SEO

The Importance Of Having An SEO Audit

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For most website and blog owners, doing an SEO audit isn’t a high priority. Maybe it does cross their minds once in a while, but they don’t see it as something urgent. However, with Google placing premium on things like site load speeds, de-ranking websites with excessive keyword insertions and many other things, periodic SEO audit has become very important.

Carrying out an evaluation to determine the health and state of a website is both important and well worth it. This is because you get to ascertain the high performing and underperforming aspects of your website. With this information, you will be able to make the adjustments necessary to improve and enhance your website’s performance on the search engines.

Start With the Crawl

The first step you should take is find out just how “crawlable” your website is. A properly crawled website is a properly indexed website. So, when the search engine bots hit your website, you don’t want them crawling some pages and not crawling others –unless that’s the general intent. To do this, you can use crawler a tool like Screaming Frog’s SEO Spider (free for the first 500 URLs). Then, sign up with either Google or Bing Webmaster tools. These tools combined can provide you with a slew of information about your website’s crawl-ability.

Can Your Site Be Accessed and Indexed?

The next thing to do would be to check just how accessible your website is to the search engine bots. This often involves checking the health of your robots.txt, xml sitemaps, robots meta tags, http status codes, site navigation, JavaScript and flash navigation, website’s architecture, and site speed/performance. Then using the “site:your site url” command, you can easily find out just how many of your website’s pages are indexed in the SEs, which ones are considered higher priority and most relevant.

What’s the State of Your WebPages?

Your on-page optimization is crucial to your website’s success. Without it, your website might as well be non-existent. The url and individual pages have to optimised for specific and related keywords without over-optimising them, have excellent content, low bounce rate, titles, meta descriptions, a decent number of outbound links, content-ad ratio and increased visitor interactivity to be given a pass mark. So, find out everything you can about this. You can use Google analytics and Google or Bing webmaster tools for the analysis.

Where are the Links Coming From?

The search engines still think of links as an essential part of your ranking. Without links, your websites won’t rank. Period. So, carry out an analysis on where your links are coming from, your inbound links neighbourhood, link and anchor text relevance/variation, social interactivity and authority of the sites hosting your backlinks.

These are the four crucial aspects of an SEO audit. Websites with pass marks –over 70%- in all these are more likely to rank higher than websites with lower scores. Struggling with your rankings and desire higher rankings today? Carry out an SEO audit. You’ll never regret it.

Daniel Ruyter is co-founder of the SEO consulting firm Alpha Tree Marketing.

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