What Information Do You Get From an SEO Audit?

An SEO Audit is a way to look at your website and check the technical aspects, content and off-site health of your company’s website. This is more in-depth and consultant based than a free SEO scan that some companies offer as bait to talk you into a long-term contract. All comprehensive SEO Audits should include information about these three areas.

Technical Review

The technical SEO part of the audit reviews a lot of technical parts of the website. Are you using the right tags and markup on your pages? Do you have a site map that Google can read. Is your robots.txt file blocking some important parts of your site from being indexed? These are important items that require a solid technical knowledge of websites and how search engines index them. The technical part of one of our SEO audits includes over 70 individual items on a checklist that we use to determine technical soundness of a site. The technical side is very important because it is what helps make sure that the search engines can find and understand the content on your site. If your site has serious technical problems…like we once found where the designer had marked the site to not be indexed by Google, then it doesn’t matter if you have the best content or user experience.

User Experience and Content Review

Comprehensive site reviews should include information about the content you have on your site. Do you have videos, a blog, answers to questions prospective customers may want to know, and more. Are your pages short word count or do they need better structuring to make them more readable? Should we add some videos or illustrations to make the page better and hold a visitor’s attention. These types of insights are not one-size-fits-all and require spending some time on the site. There are some more straight forward items in the User Experience department that can be looked at as well, such as color schemes, use of motion, ease of navigation, etc. This part of the review looks at what brings visitors into the site and how to keep them on the site longer and become customers. The more data we have available (analytics, Google Search Console), the better we’ll do at reviewing the content on your site.

Off-Site Signals

The final part of a comprehensive SEO review is off-site signals. Some of these contribute heavily to traffic. Having your business listed in Google’s My Business directory, for example, is a critical step. Directory listings, reviews, social media and links are all important aspects to making sure your business looks credible and sends good trust signals to the search engines.

Why an SEO Audit is a Good Idea for Your Website

When is the last time you checked on the health of your website for SEO purposes. If your business is like a lot of local businesses, you don’t have a dedicated in-house SEO employee. You might have a general marketing coordinator or someone to post some new blog posts on your website or on social media platforms. But have you ever had someone actually check your website for opportunities that could help it show up a lot more to your potential customers?

Most Website Designers Don’t Know SEO

This is very clear from looking at a lot of websites. The most obvious sign is that the Title in your browser for the home page of your new website says “HOME” and nothing else. The fact it says home is a huge problem, unless you are involved in the business of homes and even then it needs to be in some type of context. 25% of all websites don’t even have titles on their pages according to a HubSpot analysis. While getting the perfect page title isn’t easy, having “home” or no page title just shows a complete lack of knowledge among web designers. There are many more examples…but just realize that in many cases the web designer is much better at making the site look good to people than they are at making it look good to a search engine.

Just Because Your Website Shows Up, Doesn’t Mean it is Optimized

Type a little html in a text editor and upload the file to a server and you have a basic website. While almost no websites are designed that way anymore, it is an illustration that just because your website shows up when you type in your url, doesn’t mean it is optimized to be found. There are many technical items that should be checked to make sure your website is running at its best. Sometimes there may be limits based on the hosting platform you currently have, but there are often a lot of small tweaks that can be made to make a website run faster, be indexed by search engines easier and just work better.

A Cost Effective Way to Improve

For small businesses with an owner inclined to spend time on web marketing or an employed tasked with SEO as part of many other duties, an SEO audit can provide a road map. SEO Audits are like hiring a consultant to take a look at the current situation and provide direction for how to improve. We use this same tool as the starting point with any ongoing SEO clients because it provides us with a starting point for what to spend our time working on. If you’re a small business that can’t afford to spend thousands of dollars a year on SEO, a site audit is a great way to get pointed in the right direction of what to do next to improve your site without the ongoing fees.

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