3 Jun, 2020

5 Critical Areas You Should Check When Conducting an SEO Audit

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Search engine optimisation is a continuous process. You should refine your SEO strategies continuously and make the necessary adjustments to your website. Not only can it help ensure that your site complies with Google’s policies, but it also allows you to establish a robust organic presence online.

One way to determine if you’re on the right track is to conduct an SEO audit. Checking your website’s every nook and cranny will help ensure that everything’s okay under the hood. Also, it can prevent any minor technical and content-related issue from hurting your site’s performance.

Conducting an SEO Audit

SEO is more than just ranking for relevant keywords. It is also about improving web design and providing your visitors with excellent user experience, amongst others. To meet these SEO requirements, here are the areas you should look into when auditing your site:

1. Page loading time

Find out how long it takes your website to load and ensure that it doesn’t exceed five seconds. Google said the slower your webpages load, the bigger the chance web visitors would leave. If it takes longer than five seconds, there is a 90% chance you’ll lose a visitor. It further increases by 106% if your page loading time takes longer than six seconds.

Having a slow website could have a significant impact on small businesses. It could result in poor SEO, which could lead to lower search rankings, higher bounce rates, and fewer sales/conversation. Slow page loading times could hurt big companies, too. For instance, a mere one-second delay in page loading time could cause Amazon to lose $1.6 billion in annual sales.

2. Keyword ranking

When conducting an SEO audit, find out how your webpages are performing according to the keywords you’re targeting. Tracking keyword rankings will help verify if you’re heading in the right direction and ensure that you’re receiving a significant amount of web traffic.

If you’re not ranking well for the keywords you’re targeting, it will help to conduct thorough keyword research. By doing so, you can respond to search queries properly and ensure that your content matches user intent. This will help you obtain better search rankings on Google.

3. Mobile-friendliness

Mobile internet has become quite popular over the last few years, and this trend is most likely to continue. The World Advertising Research Centre recently revealed that by 2025, 72.6% of Internet users, or about 3.7 billion people, will access the web through their smartphones. With more and more people going online through mobile devices, you’d want your website to be as mobile-friendly as possible.

When auditing your site, see if it is shown and rendered correctly regardless of screen size. Make sure to avoid long-scrolls and consider your audience’s needs when designing your webpages. You can check out Google’s online resource to determine how you can further improve your site’s mobile-friendliness. 

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4. URL structure

Think of your site’s URL structure, which includes site navigation and internal links, as the foundation of a building. If the foundation is weak, the building can collapse with one push. Since a site’s technical structure influences user engagement and Google rankings, ensure that yours is strong and stable to achieve SEO success.

When conducting an SEO audit, you can use HubSpot’s Website Grader to determine if your web structure is technically sound.  

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5. Content relevance

With the launch of Google’s BERT update, creating high-quality and relevant content is now more valuable than ever. Today, it isn’t enough that your webpages, articles, videos, and infographics contain relevant keywords and match user intent. Therefore, see if your web content is highly relevant not only to the keywords you’re targeting but also to your audience and niche/industry.

If you think your content needs some improvement, here’s how you can optimise it for user intent:

1. Perform a Google analysis of the keywords you want to rank for.

2. Research the types of content that are popular amongst your audience.

3. Identify semantically related keywords to the ones you’re targeting.

4. Create content that answers your audience’s questions.

5. Incorporate both your primary and semantically relevant keywords in your content.

Answer the Public is a free keyword research tool you can use when creating optimised content for your audience. It helps you identify variations of keywords you’re targeting and even provides questions your audience might ask when using those keywords in their search queries. 

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Conclusion

Search engine optimisation is a continuous process. It needs constant improvement and adjustment to ensure optimum success. Auditing your site is the first step towards improving your SEO strategies. By knowing which areas of your campaign are lacking, you’ll know which part of them you should prioritise and adjust first. This will help you save a significant amount of time and effort when implementing corrections to your site.

At Springhill Marketing, we have highly skilled and experienced SEO experts who can optimise your website for search engines. Contact us to for an SEO audit and to obtain the optimisation solutions you need.

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