Are you looking at your website with total frustration? You might be ready to call it quits because you’re not getting enough traffic to monetize your site.
This frustration is common with many site owners who have high expectations to strike it big with an online business. It feels like a failure when that doesn’t happen.
It’s understandable, but now isn’t the time to walk away. There’s a good chance that there are simple things on your site that can be fixed through a website audit.
This website audit checklist your chance to spot opportunities to improve your traffic and conversions. Read on to learn why you need to do a website audit and the steps to take to make it happen.
Why Do You Need a Website Audit?
Did you know that Google uses more than 200 search ranking factors when it ranks search results? A website audit will go over the most important ranking factors to make sure your website is in prime position for top rankings.
An audit can uncover security holes in your site and give users a great experience. That will help you create conversions and more business.
There are website security audits, on-site SEO audits, traffic conversion audits, technical audits, and off-site SEO audits. These audits overlap and the website audit checklist here will touch upon each area.
Website Audit Checklist for a Complete Audit
You will want to access the backend of your website, open Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and have this checklist by your side as you go through the content. We’ll start off with technical aspects of your site, move to on-site SEO, and then off-site SEO.
1. Website Goals
A complete website audit starts off with the goals you have for your website. It will help you understand why traffic from search engines is important to you.
Next, you’ll want to consider what you want people to do when they get to your site. You may want to have someone fill out an application, schedule an appointment, or make a purchase.
The reason why this is important is that you need to make it clear to users what you want them to do on your site. If it’s not clear, they won’t take action.
2. Site Speed and Security
Site speed and security have a number of effects on your website. Both are ranking factors by Google, so your search rankings will be affected.
Conversions are also impacted by site speed and security. The longer your site takes to load (even just a few milliseconds) the more likely someone will leave. An SSL certificate will give reasons for users to trust your site, making them more comfortable to buy.
You can run a site speed test through Google’s Page Speed Insights. You may be able to get an SSL certificate through your website host if you don’t have one installed already.
3. 404 Errors and Broken Links
No one likes to click on broken links or go to a dead end on your site. You want to check Google Search Console to see if there are any crawl errors. You can fix these errors by redirecting the links to another page on your site.
There are a number of broken link tools that will scan your site for all internal and external links. You may have to replace external links with new sources if you find that the links don’t work anymore.
4. Proper Page Headings
Each page on your site needs a hierarchy of page headings. An H1 heading should only be used once on a page, and that’s often for the page title.
An H2 heading breaks up content into different ideas. Each numbered item on this checklist is an H2 heading. You may use H3 and H4 headings if they make sense, but you don’t need them.
Headings are great to add keywords and create a cleaner user experience.
You need to learn how to pick the right keywords to target. Once you do which keywords are worth targeting, it’s time to make sure they appear in the right places on your website.
Each page on your site should have specific keywords that appear in the main heading, page description, and appear naturally on the page. You can have variations of the same keyword appear throughout the content as well.
6. Meta Descriptions
Each page needs to have a description that will tell users and search engines what the page is about. It’s a couple of sentences that will give context to the content of your page.
They’re also necessary to boost SEO traffic because users read these descriptions to find the most relevant information.
Backlinks are an important tool to use on your site because they are an indicator of valuable content. If a page is perceived as valuable to readers, then it will rank higher in search results.
You want to have backlinks from quality sites. Unfortunately, there are spammy sites that will link to you. You can find them in Google Search Console and disavow those links that could drag down your rankings.
8. Directory Listings
Finally, you want to check your directory listings in Google My Business, Bing Places, and other relevant directories. Your business name, address, and phone number have to be accurate and consistent.
If they’re not, then you need to make those corrections. Directory listings can make a big difference for local businesses. If you don’t have these listings, make it a priority to fill them out.
A Simple Website Audit Checklist for More Traffic
It can be frustrating when your website doesn’t get results. You can move towards getting those results by following this website audit checklist. This will break down the overall website experience into small chunks that you can improve over time.
As you make these improvements, you’ll start to notice an increase in traffic and conversions because users have a better website experience.
Don’t stop there! Great SEO takes consistency and a lot of work. A website audit should be done every 6 months or so as Google updates its algorithm.
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