We usually associate the word ‘audit’ with something negative – namely, the last thing anyone wants performed on their taxes. But an SEO audit is one of the best things that can happen to your website.
You’re probably aware of how important search engine optimisation is and why it’s imperative to your online presence. Regular SEO audits help to ensure that your website meets the ever-changing standards set by search engines, effectively improving your ranking on results pages.
This is done by providing a clear picture of the current health and performance of your website. The analysis will reveal the missing actions and activities that can be done to get ahead of the competition. Not convinced? Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why every website needs an SEO audit.
SERP positions matter
According to a recent study, over 25% of people only click the first search result. To add to the confusion, search engines frequently improve the user experience by making changes to their algorithms, thus altering how websites are ranked.
Allowing your website to leave the first page is suicide. The moment that happens, all of the time, money and effort you put into developing it goes down the drain. SEO audits give you peace of mind knowing that this will never be the case by assessing the factors that determine a website’s position in SERPs (search engine results pages).
An SEO audit will also identify any issues that could be hurting your ranking.
Technical problems abound
Here are a few examples of technical problems that an SEO audit will identify and solve:
1. Website speed
The time your website takes to load is one of the foremost considerations taken by search engines when determining your ranking. This is because UX (user experience) is a major priority, and a fast website is indicative of a good one. Large images, redundant code and server response times will be analysed to ensure that everything is in working order.
2. Redirects and errors
301 redirects, 302 redirects, and 404 errors also negatively impact the user experience. They can act as roadblocks that make navigating a website frustrating. A professional SEO audit will ensure that these are non-issues.
This refers to how easy it is for Google to find and index your website. Things like your robots.txt file and HTTP header status code, in addition to not having a dynamic sitemap, can be detrimental to your site’s crawl ability.
4. Site architecture
The way your website is structured is another factor that can determine its ranking on results pages. Using subfolders and sticking to short, but descriptive URLs can help. Again, an SEO audit will identify and resolve any potential problems.
Technical issues aside, SEO audits will also cover on-page elements. This includes meta titles and descriptions, headers, content, internal linking and more. That’s a whole lot of factors that you won’t have to worry about.
Know thy Competitor
You can’t build the world’s tallest skyscraper until you know how tall the others are. Similarly, you need to know what your competitors are up to and what tactics they’re using to gain the upper hand over your website on SERPs. You can also benefit from identifying and leveraging their weaknesses.
At this point, it should come as no surprise that an SEO audit can help you achieve exactly that. It will help you figure out what you can implement into your own strategy by taking the competition’s recipes for success into account.
Depending on your current approach, it’s not impossible that you’re sinking dollars into making changes on your website that aren’t paying off. This is often the case for businesses that work with cheap or unreliable marketing agencies. Getting your website audited will reveal any mistakes that are being made.
But what about the cost of the audit? Well, you’ll be glad to know that there are local professionals who can perform an SEO audit on your website absolutely free. SEO Perth agency PWD is a great example. You can read about their free SEO audits here, which include errors, warnings, issues, notices, crawled pages, and a total score for your website.
From there, you can partner up and use their web design, SEO, PPC or branding services to determine the best way forward for your digital presence.
With the information mentioned above, you can use what you learned from the SEO audit to develop a stronger and more effective content strategy. This can go a long way in ensuring that the time and effort you invest in your website is used to its fullest potential. There’s no telling just how much money that could save you.
So, it stands to reason that an SEO audit is certainly worth doing – especially since it doesn’t have to cost you anything. Be sure to add it to your to-do list for the week ahead.