Your website needs an SEO audit to determine the site optimisation status and to keep up-to-date with the frequently changing SEO requirements. It will also help identify any unnatural or broken links, update your content, and easily track ranking changes.
At the end of the audit, you should have a list of actions that you’ll need to implement to improve website performance.
Here are a few tips to ace your website audit.
1. Check all the indexed pages by doing a site:search. Check if the homepage shows up as the first result, and if it doesn’t, investigate the possible reasons such as a penalty, poor internal linking etc.
2. Search for the brand terms and check if the proper pages are showing up. If not, investigate reasons.
3. Check Google’s cache to see the content showing up and whether the appropriate navigation links are all present.
1. Does the homepage and landing pages have adequate content? Are they completely unique?
2. Does the main website have substantial content and appropriate long tail keywords?
3. Check for keyword cannibalisation and formatting using appropriate H tags.
4. Is the content easy to read and are the headlines well written?
5. Ensure that there is more unique content than there are ads.
6. Thoroughly investigate for duplicate content in the main and sub domains.
7. Check if the content exists on a secure site and if the same content is replicated on other domains owned by the company.
1. Check robots.txt to determine if all the content is accessible.
Check site architecture
1. All the different categories of pages must be setup in order of hierarchy.
2. Check if the landing pages are high enough in the hierarchy to receive adequate link equity for competitive keywords.
3. Are there too many or too little category pages?
4. Is the pagination appropriate? Make sure that it does not hinder crawling. The important content should be higher up in terms of pagination.
5. Check how many clicks away each page is to highly, moderately, and long tail competitive keywords.
1. Are all the 301’s being used properly?
3. How long does each page take to load?
4. Are there are errors in Google Webmaster tools?
5. Are alt text and XML site maps in place?
1. Check for the canonical version of the site as specified in the Google Webmaster tools.
2. Make sure that the rel canonical link tag is appropriately implemented across the website.
1. Check for clean URLs, short URLs, and descriptive URLs for their appropriate functions.
1. Check for the number of links on a page which directs to other pages within the website.
2. Check for vertical links, horizontal links, footer links, and internal anchor text.
3. Identify broken links.
Title tags and meta tags
1. Ensure that every page has a unique, keyword rich title tag.
2. Ensure that they are not keyword stuffed and that the page titles include the brand name.
3. Also check for meta keywords and meta descriptions.
When you’re doing an actual audit, you will have to go into a lot more nitty-gritties, but the above overall guideline should help you get started.