It can be hard to determine the best ways to improve your seo and to identify errors on your website. Carrying out a manual website audit by simply scouring each page by eye and testing functionality manually can be time consuming and tedious at the best of times. Luckily this is why website auditing tools exist!
What is a website audit?
A website audit is a complete analysis of your website that highlights factors that are directly affecting your website’s ability to rank on Google and other search engines.
It is important to audit your website periodically to ensure you have no functional issues or any loose ends on your website. This gives you a great baseline and the best possible chance to rank highly for your selected keywords. A website audit is also a great way to discover errors on your website after going through the process of having a new web design created.
Website audits are extremely useful in ensuring your website doesn’t contain any issues that will affect customer experience such as broken links, or lack of mobile friendliness. This will help ensure you achieve a good conversion rate and don’t lose customers as a result of technical issues.
What does a website audit show?
Website audits can range in the depth of information they provide. For the purpose of this article we will describe the various factors that our own “Honest Media Website Audit” will display the number of issues present on the website under each of the following titles:
- Pages with duplicate titles
- Pages with duplicate meta descriptions
- Images that are missing an alt attribute
- Pages that are missing an H1 tag
- Pages that have a low word count (less than 300 words)
- Pages that have multiple H1 tags
- Whether there is a missing sitemap.xml reference in robots.txt
- Occurrences of a missing http encryption
- Pages that are too large in size
- Whether an Invalid sitemap.xml format is being used
- Pages that blocked crawls by robots.txt
- Missing www canonical references
- Broken internal images
- Broken internal links
- Pages that have duplicate content
- Pages with no viewport tag
- Broken external links
- Pages that are missing a title
- Pages that returned a 4XX http status code
- Pages that returned a 5XX http status code
- Missing sitemap.xml files
- Internal links that contain “nofollow” attributes
- Pages with underscores in the URL
- Pages using frames
- Pages using flash
- Pages that are missing a doctype declaration
- Pages that are missing a language declaration
- Pages that are loading slowly
- Pages with temporary redirects
- Pages that are missing a meta description
- Pages that are missing an encoding declaration
- Pages with matching H1 and title content
- Pages that have too many URL parameters
- Pages that have a short title
- Pages that have a long title
- Pages that have too many on-page links
- Pages that have a low text to HTML ratio
- Missing robots.txt files
- Pages with long URLs
- External links that contain “nofollow” attributes
- Pages blocked from being indexed
What do you do with the information produced by a website audit?
Once your website audit has identified any issues present on your website it’s time to pull up your sleeves and get to work making fixes! If you have the technical know how it’s simply a matter of going through your list of problems and knocking them off one by one until there are no issues shown.
If you don’t possess the technical know how or have the time to go through your site and make the changes, web agencies such as The Honest Agency are here to help. Our SEO team will get to work on your behalf making fixes and ensuring your website is performing at peak efficiency.
After your website audit keep conversion rate optimisation in mind!
Once your website audit is complete and you’ve had all errors on your website seen to, it is worth delving into the world of conversion rate optimisation to ensure you have the best possible chance of converting “views” into “enquires” or “leads”.
Conversion rate optimisation is effectively the act of making sure your audience has a great experience on your website and that you reduce any barriers a potential customer may have in making an enquiry.
The way we like to put it is “Why spend time and money on driving customers to your website and then not being able to land them once they get there?”.
Some general conversion rate optimisation tips are:
- Place your phone number in the header
- Have a call to action on every page
- Place your contact details in the footer
- Install live chat if this works with your business model
- Reduce navigation options and ensure user paths are clear
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