How to do a Website SEO Audit in 15 minutes
So, you’re a small business owner and may not have the resources to pay somebody oodles of cash to do some SEO.
Furthermore, you want to find out quickly the status of your SEO. You could contact someone like us to do you a comprehensive FREE SEO Health Check, but otherwise here are some great checks you can do yourself in about 15 minutes.
It won’t be exhaustive but you will at least be able to diagnose a few problems. If you’ve paid someone to do your SEO, you will at least be able to check off the basics quickly.
1. Understand the Marketplace Environment
It’s important first of all to understand the web space that the site is operating in. To do this, identify and name the market. All businesses operate within a market and this needs identifying online as well. Let’s say that the market is “legal services” – we can start by running some searches for the competitive terms in the industry.
After running these searches we can look at the kind of results that appear. Interesting things to look for could be:
– Number of businesses crowding the advertisement sections (top bar and right column). This will give you an idea of how competitive the terms are.
– What kind of sites are crowding out the top placements? Are they directories, associations or your competitors businesses?
After doing this you have got a brief (certainly not exhaustive) sense of your market environment online. It’s also a good way of doing some competitor analysis.
2. Are you there Robot?
We now want to see if the basics are there: the robots.txt file and sitemap.xml location
This shows us if the person developing the site cared (or bothered) with the basic requirements of SEO.
Enter your following website address: www.example.com/robots.txt and see if it’s there.
Enter www.example.com/sitemap.xml and again, see if it’s there.
Note: Some sites may use a less common directory name. For example, we use /sitemap_index.xml – so, some more checking might be required to get your sitemap location.
3. The Website Architecture
Have a look at your webpage and look at the architecture (how the links flow together). The Home page is the central hub and provides access to all other pages. It’s important to have a good website structure to give the search engines the easiest time of crawling. My post here talks in more depth about the importance of a good website structure.
4. Check that you are indexed
Enter site:www.example.com into Google or other search engine for your own website and see if it shows up. If it doesn’t show up, there could be a penalty from Google or crawl errors from bad site architecture (see above).
Those are 15 minutes worth of checks you can do (if you’re being quick!), but it’s only the tip of the iceberg as many more factors need checking to see exactly where you are with SEO.
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