Before you start the optimization process, you must assess the issues why your website is holding back in search results. It has been found that certain technical glitches make the website invisible to the search engines. As a result of this, you will not be able to climb higher on the ladder of ranking, though your website carries quality content and service and this is the significance of the technical site audit checklist.
After 2011 and till now there are a lot of changes and addition to the process of audit checklist. At the very end, this process does not include the issues what are holding back your website, but you have to prepare a list what will have to be done for better improvement. If you can make it clear why the steps are to be taken and what will be the outcome, it will be quite easy for the developers and content team to implement the same. Here are some steps that you can make your audit more compact and effective.
Quick Synopsis :-
i. Check pages and organic landing pages in Google Analytic
- The home page should be shown as the first result, if not count it.
- If your home is not shown at the first, it must be the result of poor architecture.
- Count the returned pages.
- Check your website’s response on a site search.
- How many pages are found valuable in the search engine index?
ii. Google’s Cache for Key Pages and Branded Term
- Check the navigation links and also note down the links which are not visible on the site.
- Is the content showing up in proper structure?
- Check the text only version of the cached pages.
iii. Mobile User Friendlines
- Does your website have mobile friendly label?
- If yes, then check the user’s response and landing page’s usability on Mobile.
- If no, then prepare for it, as it has an impact over organic visit.
On Page Optimization :-
- Make sure the title tags are exclusive and well optimized having your brand name
- Title tags should be within 50-60 characters.
- Each page must contain title and Meta description.
- This will help improve organic traffic.
- URLs must be descriptive and optimized.
- Frequent changing of URLs may have a negative impact on traffic.
- Shorter URLs have better usability.
- There should be no excessive parameters or session id.
- The exposure of URLs to search engine should be constant and static.
ii. The on-page content must include the primary keyword phrase.
iii. There should be variable and alternating key word phrases except repeated uses.
iv. There should be sufficient contents on the key pages.
v. In H1 tag there must be the primary keyword phrase.
vi. Images are to be linked with keyword phrases.
Content Issues :-
i. Home Page and Landing Pages.
- The home must have at least one character.
- The content should of sufficient words to be understood by the search engines that what the page contains about.
- Check if the landing pages are optimized or not?
- Contents should be real with having proper target keywords.
ii. Check Content format that H tags and images are properly used.
iii. The content should carry enough information to educate the users about the product and services.
iv. There should be appreciable headlines on blog posts.
v. Check the amount of ads compared to contents.
vi. Duplicate content issue.
- There must be one URL specified to a single content.
- Check the delicacy issue of the content using copy s
- Check if the content shows anywhere else in the domain.
- Printer friendly pages may be the cause of duplicate content issue.
Internal Linking and Site Structural Design :-
i. There is no rule or limit, but your site must have at least 80-100 links on a page.
ii. Vertical and horizontal linking.
- Product pages must be linked to the product category pages.
- Product pages should also be linked to the other relevant product pages.
iii. Don’t use massive blocks of links stuck in the content.
iv. There should be presentable anchor text.
v. Check, if there is any broken link within the site.
Technical Issues and Site Speed :-
i. Check it if the root has been directed to the landing page using 301 properly.
iii. Use the new Schema org mark ups and rich snippets in such types like people, events, reviews, products, recipes, and breadcrumb navigation. You can get more compact information regarding this in http://schema.org/docs/gs.html.
- Having a single vocabulary and markup syntax, supported by the major search engines means that webmasters do not have to make tradeoffs based on which markup type is supported by which search engine. Schema.org supports a wide collection of item types, although not all of these are yet used to create rich snippets.
- With schema.org, webmasters have a single place to go to learn about markup for a wide selection of item types, search engines get structured information that helps improve search result quality, and users end up with better search results and a better experience on the web.
- Schema.org markup can be used on web pages written in any language. Though the schema.org site is currently available in English only, but in later future it has been planned to translate to other languages.
- Google currently supports rich snippets for people, events, reviews, products, recipes, and breadcrumb navigation, and you can use the new schema.org markup for these types, just as with our regular markup formats.
iv. Redirect chains significantly reduce the amount of link equity associated with the final URL, so redirects should be pointed directly to the final URL.
v. Always check for errors In Google webmaster tools.
vi. There should be proper usage of Flash, I Frames and Java Script.
vii. XML site maps
- XML sitemaps should be in proper place covering healthy site architecture.
- XML sitemaps are to be structured to show index problems followed by protocols.
viii. Canonical version of the site must be established and specified in Google’s webmaster tools along with proper 301s.
ix. Check for significant site speed to achieve user satisfaction.
x. Check the compression feature is enabled or not using GzipTest.
xi. Enable caching with optimization of images for the web.
Accessibility and Index :-
i. Is the entire site or important pages are blocked, check the robot.txt.>
iii. Use the web developer toolbar, if necessary.
iv. Use the User Agent Add-on to change the user agent to Google bot.
v. Check the SEOmoz PRO Campaign and also check for Check for 4xx errors and 5xx errors.
vi. Check for XML sitemaps are submitted and listed in the robots.txt, Google or Bing webmaster tool.
vii. Check if pages accidentally being tagged with the Meta robots no index command.
viii. Examine the site quickly by using crawl tool such Moz or Screaming Frog.
Mobile Accessibility :
i. Is your site a mobile set up?
ii. If yes, then check the presentable structure, design, fonts and images.
iii. Make sure about Analytic for several mobile contents.
iv. In case of dynamic serving, there must be varying HTTP header. It will help to determine search engines to find specific mobile contents.
v. Evaluate the experience of your website in both desktop and mobile using.
vi. If a mobile site (m.) exists, does the desktop equivalent URL point to the mobile version with rel=”alternate”?
vii. Is the mobile view canonical to the desktop version?
ii. Having the same Google Analytic property will create problems with page view-related metrics such as inflating page views and pages per visit and reducing the bounce rate.
iii. Internal searches are properly surveillance by Analytic code.
iv. There should be demographic tracking on the website.
v. Make sure that internal IP addresses, Meta refresh, Java Script refresh are disabled.
vi. UTM Campaign Parameters and Event tracking are set up for marketing efforts and other interactions.
i. Check the international domains and versions mentioned in the URLs.
ii. Make sure that country based targeting is enabled Webmaster tools.
- If the website is specified for a country, it should be mentioned in the Webmaster tools.
- If the site is holds international section, it will also be targeted in the Webmaster tools.
iii. Implement hreflang / rel alternate if relevant
iv. Keep update the several site languages and maintain the different versions.
v. Make sure that the URL language and currency is relevant to the native locations.
So, these are the major technical aspects to be examined while making an audit to point out the faults and needs of a website. With the spinning time there may be more issues born, and the same will be operated time by time. On the basis of the audit report you should take the measurable steps to improve your business status. Check this out and drop your remarks about the same.