An SEO Audit is a health check for your website that looks at the technical infrastructure of your website, the on-page elements and off-page essentials for visibility optimization online, usability and conversion.

Below are three main reasons why every company should perform an SEO audit:

  1. Ensure accessibility of sitemaps

Sitemap is a file for web crawlers that help them in reading your web pages. Using a site map makes the process of indexing your web pages more easier, provides metadata and other details that are easy for crawlers to understand. Running an SEO Audit will also tell you if your sitemap is working properly. Below are several errors that may occur, as a result:

  • URL not followed: this means crawlers can’t process the sitemap in its entirety because there are too many redirects to follow
  • URL not allowed: the sitemap that has been submitted may contain URL’s that are at a different domain, or a higher level than the sitemap file
  • Empty sitemap: there aren’t enough URL’s in your sitemap
  • Compression error: your sitemap needs to be recompressed, uploaded to your website, and resubmitted

Invalid URL: one or more URL’s that have been submitted aren’t valid

  1. To ensure effectiveness of SEO performance
    A SEO audit helps you determine the effectiveness of you and your competitors’ SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) activities. A SEO audit contains the following analysis:
  • Backlink Competitive Analysis: This analysis helps you evaluate and compare the quality of your backlinks with your competitors. To do so, you can use tools such as Google Webmaster Tools to find out which sites are linking to you or your competitor’s website.
  • Poisonous Link Analysis: This analysis helps you determine whether you’re attracting poisonous links. Poisonous links are links from bad neighborhoods such as spammy directories or link farms. To disavow poisonous links follow these steps:
  1. a) Go to Google Webmaster Tools.
    b) Go to the Dashboard, click Search Traffic, and then click Links to Your Site.
    c) Under Who Links the Most, click More.
    d) Click on Download more sample links to generate all of your inbound links.
    e) Add each poisonous link you want to disavow in a text file line by line.
    f) Go to the disavow links tool page.
    g) Click Disavow links.
    h) Click Choose file.
  • Content Keywords Analysis: This analysis helps you determine how Google interprets your website based on the content written on your site.

To perform a Content Keywords Analysis, access your Google Webmaster Tools account, click on Google Index, and then click on Content Keywords.

Once you’ve done so, you will see which keywords Google associates your website with. In this case, you would change how Google perceives your website by adding more targeted keywords in your web content.

  • Site Speed Analysis: This analysis helps you assess the speed of your website and discover ways to improve it.

To perform a Site Speed Analysis, enter your website URL in Google’s PageSpeed Insights and Google will make suggestions on how you can increase your website speed.

  • Social Sharing Button Analysis: This analysis helps you determine whether you’ve added social media sharing icons on your website.

Some of the best social media sharing buttons sources are AddThis and ShareThis.

  • Duplicate Content Analysis: This analysis helps you determine whether there’s more than one version of a webpage indexed by Google.
  • Content Audit Analysis: This analysis helps you determine whether you’ve included unique and relevant meta descriptions, title tags , SEO-friendly URLs, meta keywords and other attributes on your website.

3) It’s structure
A SEO audit contains eight major analyses that SEO experts should follow. This structure or framework ensures that you go through each component of SEO properly so you aren’t undermining any area. The framework helps you create and implement a comprehensive SEO strategy that will increase your website’s search ranking.