10 simple steps and tools you need for an SEO audit of your website
Love more traffic to your website (and more customers as a result)? Find out why SEO is so important, and how to audit yours.
One of the best ways to advertise your business online is through search engine optimization (SEO). Simply put, your site needs to rank among the top websites that Google or other search engines list on the search engine result pages (SERPs) for the keywords you’ve optimized in your web content.
But while this seems an easy tip to follow on the face of it, the reality is that it takes some knowledge and work to get to the top of the SERP for the right keywords. It’s also important that you avoid common – but costly – SEO mistakes.
But it’s worth the effort: your website will not be discovered by potential clients if it isn’t ranking high enough.
How does Google rank sites for SEO?
There are many factors that Google ranking algorithms consider when ranking websites, and you must satisfy as many of those as possible.
Part of your SEO strategy has to be focused on knowing why your competitors outrank you on Google and the measures you can put in place to reverse that. The other part should be focused on analyzing how your site is fairing online.
Is it getting enough online traffic? Where is the traffic coming from? Are your marketing strategies working or do you need to redesign them? Are there conversions and if yes, are they substantial?
These questions can only be answered through SEO analysis. And to help you conduct an SEO analysis of your website, we have put together some tips comprising of seven steps and three tools. We hope you find them helpful.
Seven steps you need to take to conduct an SEO analysis
If you want to conduct an SEO analysis of your site, here are seven steps you need to take.
1) Check your visibility on Google
Your SEO analysis should start with a simple “site:example.com” search on Google, where “example” is your site’s domain name. This search will tell you how visible your site is on Google, and therefore if your target audience is finding your content online.
If your pages aren’t ranking for the top keywords in your industry, then you need to review your SEO strategies.
2) Identify your key competitors
If your pages aren’t visible on Google, then who is ranking ahead of you? Identify all these competitors and see what they do better than you so that you can know which areas of SEO you need to improve on.
If you’re a dentist, for instance, you’re competing for local services and thus you will need to track your competitor’s local SEO strategy, and specifically coin an SEO for dentists strategy that surpasses your competitor’s. This will be easy for you if you have some basic SEO training.
3) Find your baseline SEO score
This gives you valuable but basic information regarding your site’s metrics. It will tell you who visited your site and when. You will know the number of online searchers that landed on your page organically and those who are just there to spy on you or monitor your SEO strategy.
Your SEO baseline score also tells you if your pages’ word count, keyword density, page speed, and inbound links are well optimized. (Links are one of the measures Google uses to assess your site’s spam score, so they’re important to get right.)
4) Analyze your page headings
Are your titles grabbing the attention of the people searching on Google or do you need to improve on them? Are you using enough keywords in the title? Your page will only appear on the first page of a SERP if the headings match the focus keywords that Google users search for within your niche.
5) Check the effectiveness of your social media optimization
Audit your social media presence and strategy. How many followers do you have on each platform, and how many of them actively engage with your content? How many follow you to your website? Are you posting enough on Facebook?
Are your Instagram posts appealing to the target audience? Are they worthy of going viral? This information will help you determine whether you are active enough, overdoing it, or you need to improve in terms of creating and sharing content.
6) Analyze your page speed
Your pages need to load fast in order to give your visitors the best user experience. Check to see if the speed is okay or you need to improve on it. PageSpeed Insights is a tool that Google provides for free and that will help you analyze the loading speed of your website.
7) Check and fix your internal links
How well you place internal links on your site will determine how navigable your site is. If visitors cannot navigate to other pages with ease when they come to your site, your SEO ranking will keep going down.
Three simple tools you can use for your SEO analysis
Want to do an SEO analysis of your website? Here are three simple tools that will help.
This tool tells you everything you need to know about your organic rankings, from keyword rankings to monthly search volume, to backlinks.
Just go to their site and enter your site’s URL. Everything will be listed there for you, including how your pages perform against your top competitors.
2) Google Analytics
This online visibility management platform is yet another free data source by Google. It tells you how your site is doing in Google. There surely isn’t a better way of assessing your performance on Google than getting the data right from the horse’s mouth- Google.
3) Moz Pro
This one is a paid service but its services are worth the money. It will help you boost your page rankings, monitor your SEO performance, and grow your overall keyword performance.
If you want search traffic for your site you NEED to get your SEO right
If you want to get deep insights into your site’s overall performance online and improve accordingly to get the search traffic you need, then you have to perform regular SEO analysis.
It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, there are thousands of companies out there vying for the search terms your customers are using. And if you’re not getting your website in front of them with great SEO, then their money is going to your competitors.
Need practical help with your SEO?
Not many small businesses and freelancers can afford to hire the services of an SEO agency, or even commission an SEO report to find out what they need to fix. That’s why we’ve created two online training products to help you.
Get a practical introduction to SEO in an hour
Our SEO Masterclass is an hour-long, practical class on SEO. We explain in easy-to-understand terms exactly how SEO works, and what you can do to find the right keywords for your website, and what you need to to if you want to rank for them.
To make it REALLY easy for you to implement and start seeing results, we also give you an ebook of the class, plus a worksheet.
Get complete guidance on SEO in our comprehensive kit for beginners
Want to explore SEO in more depth? Our SEO Kit makes using SEO for your site reassuringly possible. In it we guide you through:
- How SEO works (and how to avoid Black Hat mistakes).
- How to plan and implement a successful keyword strategy.
- How to write for SEO (and how to optimise for voice search).
- Why backlinks are so important – and how to get the right ones.
This is a comprehensive kit for mastering SEO for small businesses and freelancers. It’s designed for beginners and can be used on your own website, or to add to your skillset to sell as a service to clients.
Whether you decide to go it alone on SEO or get our help, we highly recommend doing something. After all, if you don’t you can bet your competitors will.