There aren’t many businesses who wouldn’t love to rank just a bit, or a lot, better in the search engines. Whether your site has recently lost some ground with its Google rankings, has never really shown up at all, or just needs some help getting over the hump, a thorough SEO audit can explain a lot of things to business owners about the state of their web presence and how it can be improved.
Here are just five reasons that you should consider an SEO audit for your website.
1. Google Webmaster Guidelines. Google periodically updates their “webmaster guidelines” and, if your site isn’t compliant it isn’t going to rank as well in the search engines. For example, mobile compatibility is now a key ranking factor for websites. An SEO audit will tell you if your website is mobile compatible or which areas of your site are lacking.
Another area where sites may also need help is with low quality backlinks. Having low quality external links can be a real problem for a site, even causing it to incur a penalty in the Google search results. Sites that aren’t in compliance with Google’s Webmasters Guidelines may not appear at all in Google’s search rankings.
2. Up-to-date SEO. SEO is constantly changing and evolving science. What worked to successfully rank a website a few years ago no longer works today. It’s an entirely different landscape, and you’ll want an SEO audit to tell you whether or not your website has the factors that are required to be a success this year, not two years ago.
3. Identify Website Errors. Many websites return page errors, most of which the owners are completely in the dark about. These page errors, known as 404 errors, not only affect the user experience, but they can also affect your rankings. An SEO audit will give you a list of the errors on your website. Once those errors are fixed, you’ll have the opportunity to recoup lost traffic and rankings.
4. Linking Strategy. While your website may link to others on the internet, there are sites out there that are also linking to you. Some of these sites could be beneficial, and others could be a detriment to your rankings and your business. An SEO audit will produce a link profile report, which you can then use to clean up unwanted links to your site.
It’s also important to have a solid internal linking strategy and site navigation, which can be included in an audit.
5. Identify Low Quality Content. Search engines love both fresh and relevant content. And they generally don’t link ‘thin’ or duplicate content. If the content on your site is outdated, incorrect, or just plain weak or incomplete, it’s likely going to have a negative impact on your rankings.
An SEO audit will give you a report on your site’s content, which you can use to make updates. If there is content that isn’t getting visitors at all for a prolonged period of time or is duplicative, it’s time to either update it or get rid of it.
Make the Health of Your Website a Priority
These are just a few of the things that an SEO audit can accomplish for your business. This type of audit should be done on a periodic basis so that your website remains updated, free of errors, and compliant with Google’s latest guidelines. By doing these things, you have a much better chance of achieving top rankings and pave a path to better returns.