Do you wonder why your website doesn’t rank in SERPs even if you’ve engaging content and a few backlinks here-&-there to stand out in the game?
Statistically, there are over 1.74 billion websites live on the internet and not every website can make it to the top-10 of the SERPs. Likewise, your chances of getting ranked in search engines are next to nothing if you’ve not worked enough on the key pillar of search engine optimization: Technical SEO.
Are you preoccupied with the question: What is Technical SEO?
Plain simply, Technical SEO is all about dealing with technical aspects of the website – either it’s to make the website fast for quick crawling or setting XML sitemap to tell search engines about content available inside a website.
In short, Technical SEO comes under the fold of On-Page SEO (that focuses more on on-site improvement for higher rankings in search engines).
For the majority of online businesses and websites, their SEO efforts fall apart when they overlook an important thing here: Technical SEO audit.
In this blog, you’ll get authentic, tried-and-tested information on how to conduct a successful technical SEO audit for your website for maximum outreach and audience engagement.
What is a Technical SEO Audit?
A technical SEO audit is all about analyzing the health of a website. In other words, to diagnose loopholes and find quick-fixes for technical aspects of websites for quick visibility across the internet. Unfortunately most of the websites go through technical SEO audit once in a blue moon, well, in fact, every website should go through this process after every six months.
Tragic but true, not every website owner is capable enough to analyze and evaluate technical aspects of a website for improved search engine optimization. Therefore, trustworthy professionals with experience in best website development services can help in enhancing technical aspects of a website.
An Effective Technical SEO Audit in just 7 Simple Steps:-
1. Start off your Technical SEO Audit with Crawl
The most important factor in technical SEO is crawlability. Therefore, before moving ahead anywhere, a professionally trained SEO expert looks for crawlability and indexability at first.
In this regard, I would suggest Ubersuggest’s ‘SEO Analyzer’ because it is easy-to-use, updated and free.
2. Check out XML Sitemap
The XML sitemap acts as a map for search engine crawlers as it helps them detect website pages and lets them rank likewise. In reality, it is not easy to build an XML sitemap as it requires in-depth know-how of coding.
There are a few key guidelines which you must ensure for your site’s XML sitemap:
- Don’t forget to submit your Sitemap to Google Search Console.
- It should be following the XML sitemap protocol.
- Keep all of your pages updated in the sitemap
- Make sure to format your sitemap in an XML document.
3. Site Load Speed: A Maker or Breaker of a Website Reputation
Siteload speed is yet another important technical SEO factor that should be checked out. According to SEMrush, more than 23% of websites suffer from an instant drop in traffic due to slow page load times.
One thing every website manager and the owner should bear in mind: Site speed is all about intuitive user-experience because search engines take it under consideration when evaluating key metrics for ranking i.e. bounce rate.
Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool can come handy for finding your website’s load time. It is as easy as A-B-C to use this tool. Just enter your site URL and Google will do the rest of the thing for you.
You can find out site load time for mobile devices like it happens for desktop. (After Google’s latest update about mobile-first indexing); an ideal page load speed should be less than 3 seconds. If it exceeds; that website should undergo major tweaks for better technical SEO.
4. Look for Duplicate Metadata
While you’re doing a technical SEO audit, don’t forget to check for duplicate metadata. Especially ecommerce sites and websites with multiple pages are easily vulnerable to duplication of metadata or simply called Meta descriptions.
Initially, duplication of metadata or Meta description doesn’t look harmful but overtime, it harms a website technically. Duplicate Meta descriptions happen when there are many products and pages with similar content. So, a detailed technical SEO audit will inform you about Meta description issues and will enable you to get rid of duplicated ones as soon as possible.
Plus, you can also detect where you’re missing tags which could be a reason for increased bounce rate for your any particular keyword.
5. Detect Keyword Cannibalization
Nothing can be confusing for search engines more than ‘Keyword Cannibalization’. It states that ‘If you want to rank two pages for similar keywords, Google or any search engine finds it difficult to decide which one to rank because you’ve multiple pages or posts for similar keywords.’
In fact, one consolidated page has more chances of standing out than two pages with lower CTR, poor authority and inadequate conversion rates.
A big blunder SEO practitioner’s commit is to optimize homepage and other subpages for the similar keyword – it is the keyword cannibalization in practice which kills technical SEO.
Therefore, it is better to look for Google Search Console’s Performance report to discover pages competing for the same keywords. Plus, with ‘filter’ you can easily find out pages with similar keywords in the URL or by typing ‘keywords’ you can look into details of pages ranking for those particular keywords.
6. Look Duplicate Content Throughout your Website
Duplicate content is the reason why you can’t get ranked now in SERPs.It is one of the factors that every website should go through technical SEO audit.
An important thing which everybody should bear in mind: Duplication of content is not just restrained to Meta description; everything from blog posts, to web content should be kept under the radar so that you could get away with the stigma of cookie-cutter or plagiarized content.
Copyscape and Grammarly are a couple of tools for catching duplicated content on the Internet. SEMrush, Screaming Frog can also come in handy for detecting duplicated content.
One of the benefits of technical SEO audit is that it can help you in finding content low in quality. For example, a piece of blog missing H1 is a big turn-off more than anything.
So with a thorough audit of your website SEO, you can save your authority in your targeted audience.
7. Track for Broken Links
Broken link (of any type) is bad for you as it leads to bad user experience, lower rankings, and increased bounce rates. With technical SEO audit, you can identify and fix broken links on your website.
For instance, you can’t get rid of 404 error messages completely. In case, a user types URL incorrectly or you modify your URL, it shows 404 errors that frustrate users and search engines altogether.
Therefore, with Technical SEO audit, you could check all pages with 404 errors and keep all those pages that are functional and helpful for your website.
With DrLinkCheck.com, you can look into broken links just by entering your URL of a website and it will generate a comprehensive report for you.
What is the need for a Technical SEO audit?
Every search engine from Google to Bing has one mission:To provide its users the best and genuine results of their search queries in a fraction of seconds.
For example, Google’s Robots crawl and assess any web page on the basis of various factors: user’s experience, page loading speed, mobile-friendliness, domain age and authority etc. Likewise, technical aspects do the same – they take authority, credibility and visibility of a website to the next level.
On the other hand, the slightest mistake in a technical SEO can make things go awry. Believe it or not; it will cost you money, time and energy. For example, a little error in XML sitemap or robots.txt.file can block any search engine from crawling your site that can be the last nail in your website’s coffin.
The majority of online marketers and SEO experts are prone to the fallacy that technical details of a website are meant to please search engines only; it is a big misconception. A visitor-friendly website should work fast, good, and securely. In fact, the poor technical foundation of a website means zero sales, and no business can survive with zero sales.
Long story short, a comprehensive technical SEO audit builds win-win situations for both users and search engines as it keeps your website away from technical flaws.
How would you conduct a successful technical SEO audit for your website? Let’s share your thoughts in the comment section below: