Complete SEO Audit Process to Boost Your Google Rankings
The journey of a thousand optimizations typically starts with a single step – the SEO audit. For most SEO professionals, an in-depth SEO audit is Step 1 after signing a new client or going in-house at a new organization.
You have to know where you are to get to where you need to be. That’s where the SEO audit comes into play. Where you want to be is wherever people are searching for you – your products, your services, or the things you know a lot about. That indicates maximizing your visibility in the search results of Google and other search engines is essential.
An SEO audit is your roadmap for how you’ll ultimately get there. An SEO audit will reveal difficulties with any site’s SEO so you can address them and start ranking where you belong. Do you know the essential areas of a website you should be assessing? Is your SEO audit as thorough as it can be?
What is an SEO Audit?
An SEO audit is a way of analyzing how well your web presence relates to best practices – it is the first step to creating an implementation plan that will have measurable results.
The purpose of the audit is to identify as many foundational problems affecting organic search performance as possible. The SEO audit will reveal:
- Technical SEO issues
- Website structure issues
- On-page SEO issues
- Potential off-site problems
- User experience issues
- Content gaps and opportunities
- Competitive marketplace insights
An audit is a standard procedure that should occur regularly – It is essentially a “health check” for your website.
What an SEO Audit Should Be
First and foremost, an audit should be comprehensive. It should cover both structural and content components touching your SEO visibility. It should provide a big picture view of what is occurring in your current state. Any missing pieces could result in additional or improper recommendations.
Your audit should be easy to understand. As a business owner, you should attach the dots as to how SEO issues are affecting your online priorities, goals, or revenue. Any recommendations should ladder up to your overarching business goals.
Finally, your SEO audit recommendations should be actionable. There should be a clear path to completion, prioritized with projected impact and effort associated with each request. The output of any SEO audit should accurately convey a simple-to-follow roadmap.
What an SEO Audit Should Not Be
An SEO audit should not be rushed. It just takes time to uncover the root causes of the issues affecting your online health. Depending on the size of your site, a usual audit can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks to complete. Due diligence is required when making significant changes to any website, and an SEO specialist must conduct a thorough investigation to make accurate, impactful recommendations.
An SEO audit should not be one size fits all. While some technical elements are needed for all websites, a situational analysis should be performed at the outset of an SEO audit to hone in on fields of focus for that site.
What Is Analyzed in an SEO AUDIT?
While SEO audits may differ slightly, each one should analyze basic technical SEO table stakes such as sitemaps, server errors, and metadata. At a large level, an audit should cover off accessibility, indexation, and optimization.
In an SEO audit at Three Deep, our specialists analyze over 193 different SEO elements across the following categories:
- Technical Audit
- Indexation analysis
- Status Codes
- Page Speed
- URL Structure
- XML Sitemap
- Canonical Tags
- Legacy Domain Issues
- Off-page Analysis
- Mobile SEO analysis
- International SEO analysis
- On-Page Audit
- Site Content Structure
- Keyword Research
- Page Copy Theme Analysis
- Keyword Use
- Meta Data Analysis (Page Titles, Heading Tags, Meta Descriptions)
- User Experience
- Images & Video
- Internal Linking & HTML Sitemap
- Server Log Audit
- Crawl Budget Analysis
- User Agent Analysis
The data captured during the auditing process allows our team to make accurate, impactful recommendations for your specific website and situation.
What to Assume During and After an SEO Audit
As previously stated, an SEO audit can take anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks. During this time, an SEO specialist is analyzing and opening SEO opportunities on your website. However, bi-weekly or weekly check-ins keep you and your crew in the loop as to the growth.
In any given website audit, there are a few low-hanging occasions found. When these types of insights are unearthed, our crew will pass them along right away. This provides a chance to recover visibility while the remainder of the audit is carried out.
After the audit has been finished, your team will be invited to a presentation in which your SEO specialist will talk through the findings and recommendations. The Three Deep SEO team will walk you and your team through the roadmap to completion, so you know what to expect and when. Besides, you will get a comprehensive analysis of your site’s health. All of these are customized to you and your particular situation.
Why It’s Important to Audit Your Website regularly
Your website is the hub of your online brand – so, it’s essential to have routine checkups to ensure everything is in order. It’s also important to note that your website is a digital living property; it’s typically not stagnant for long periods. In any given year, content is added and removed from your site. It is for this reason that should occur regularly. We recommend that websites be audited a minimum of once per year. That enables your teams to fix critical issues as they arise.
There are other parts of SEO that you should pay attention to after your audit to stay competitive. After all, the technical foundation isn’t the end of the road for SEO success. It’s essential to pay attention to your competition’s SEO activity, keep an eye on the newest search engine best practices, and maintain local SEO best practices if your business depends on customers visiting a physical address. These are elements of a successful SEO strategy and should result from your audit and ongoing SEO maintenance.