An SEO Website Audit in a Nutshell
The all-consuming SEO Audit: what the heck is it, and why should your business care? Simply put, an SEO Audit is the process of combing over all the inner workings of your website to understand how they communicate with search engines. The success of an audit is dependent upon how well one’s analysis identifies missed opportunities to drive relevant traffic (which is the equivalent of lead generation).
At the end of the day the ultimate objective of a successful audit is threefold:
- To boost website traffic with the intent to convert visitors to clients
- Improve the user experience
- Identify missed opportunities, encouraging businesses to bolster their position as industry leaders
We want to be clear: an SEO Audit will help you achieve these three objectives, after the audit has been performed, problems are identified, and then acted upon. Performing an audit (or getting someone to do it for you) will not intrinsically fix the problems with your businesses’ website, but it’s a darn good start.
Think of a website audit as a diagnostic tool to figure out why your website isn’t performing well. Leveraging insights from auditing will give your company an actionable roadmap to triumph online.
The Innards of an SEO Website Audit
In brief, here’s what an in-depth SEO Audit will analyze:
On-Page SEO Components
- Broken Links
- Meta Descriptions
- Alt(ernative) Text
- Site Speed
- Keyword Usage
- Internal Linking
- Follow Links
Off-Page SEO Components
- Citations (Name, address, phone number in online directory listings)
- Web Authority
- Social Engagement
Critical Behind-The-Scenes SEO Components
- Site-Map (What is a sitemap?)
- Mobile Friendly
- Application Development
- Leveraging Analytics
Yup. Auditing is a lot of work. And in truth, this list isn’t exhaustive; think of these components as primers. But don’t panic. We can do it for you. Identifying weaknesses within your website is absolutely crucial in (1) increasing website traffic, (2) garnering visitors who convert, and (3) defining quantifiable online goals.
Because let’s face it, if you don’t quantify what you want from your website, how will you achieve your ultimate business objectives? How will you measure if your expectations are flourishing or waning?
Conversely, if you know your webspace goals, how are you going to actualize them?
Answer: You plan for execution meticulously.
The Short-Term DIY SEO Audit
Here’s a bit of best-practice advice that will always stay relevant, to both the professional SEOers, and those of you orienting themselves in the art:
Don’t focus on SEO-- the crux of success relies on the user experience first.
Yes, SEO is critically important, but the essence of accomplishment is vigorously anticipating visitors’ needs and exceeding them. Does your website offer information readers can’t find anywhere else? How is your website positioned in relation to your competitors? What are you offering others are not?
When you create website content-- even if it’s a 300 word blog, new page, or a simple social media post-- what can your readers takeaway? What piece of information have you bestowed to them that is immediately actionable?
If readers have learned something from your website, or if you’ve given them a means to expand their minds, you have achieved your objective.
Don’t focus on SEO-- focus on the user experience first. When you focus on your readers, you’re actually doing exactly what Google wants. If you work with these thoughts in tandem, you will always be successful. Pleasing Google should not be your driving catalyst-- but reaching those in need of your talents and services.
We only make an impact on the world when we are in the right place at the right time.
It’s your job to guide the people who need you, to you.
The Importance of a Professional SEO Audit
If you’ve read this far there’s one thing we want you to change fundamentally about how you approach your website:
Defining online objectives is absolutely critical for lead generation; yet success relies in the execution and implementation of your empirical goals.
Unfortunately, unless you are an SEO guru, you currently lack the skill to do to so entirely. Frankly, the scope of this blog post does not address the painstaking process of tackling our aforementioned checklists. We could go on for days about the innards of each of those components. (And if you’ve a mind to do so, there are excellent resources online to help you explore those workings. Take a peek at Moz & Kiss Metrics.)
But what we want you to take from us today is a subtle, but absolutely necessary, mindshift: you haven’t planned enough because you lack the expertise to know what to plan for in the online sphere.
And that’s not a bad thing. There are myriad moving cogs to a professional SEO audit. In fact, entire teams come together to present a comprehensive lead generation conversion strategy. Expecting yourself to know every single component is unrealistic, and frankly an unfair, self-imposed criticism.
The Bottomline: Why Your Business Needs an SEO Audit
In the SEO sphere strategy coupled with sensible flexibility reigns supreme. Without a sound methodology in manifesting company goals, you could have innumerable SEO audits performed and it wouldn’t make a lick of difference. Without the know-how on how to leverage missing metadata, troublesome URLs, wanting content, confusing site structure, and beyond (the list is literally endless), you won’t be able to succeed the way your website should.
SEO is like any other skill. It must be honed and refined. No earnest crash-course attempts of binge watching/reading the latest on the art will teach you how to meticulously plan. Practice teaches that.
And we’ve got plenty of it.
Here’s an illuminating exercise you can conduct. If you answer “no” to at least three of these questions, consider giving us a call. Be the master of your industry, and let us help you reach the people who need you-- not only with a professional SEO audit (because that’s only the first part, right?), but with the implementation that will help your rankings climb and generate.
Self-Assessment: Does Your Business Need a Professional SEO Audit:
- Do you have a well fleshed out strategy on how to get your website listed on helpful industry indexes or referral pools? (Backlinking strategy? Have you accessed the backlinks you do have?)
- Do you have a guest blogging outreach plan?
- Do you have a thoughtful content calendar?
- Have you customized your Google Analytics to disregard your IP?
- Do you have a well defined website structure that makes sense to search engines?
- Are all of your images SEO optimized?
- Have you cleaned up any dead links or 404 pages? (Did you remember to create a custom 404 page?)
- Is your website fully mobile responsive? (Did you know most of your traffic will most likely trickle in from mobile users?)
- What is your overarching social media strategy to increase user engagement and conversions?
- Which metrics are important to you in measuring success?
Feeling a bit lost? No worries. We’re here to help! Ask your questions in the comment section below!