How to do your own website audit in 2021
Looking to do SEO yourself? All good SEO strategies start with a comprehensive SEO audit.
We all want more organic traffic and conversions from Google (and other search engines), but learning the process that is involved can be overwhelming. It doesn’t have to be that way.
If you run a website, whether it’s a personal blog, a brick and mortar store or a service-based business, it’s important that you keep your website healthy.
Have you ever run a website audit and been lost in the results? You’re not alone.
From technical redirects to developing a backlink strategy – a complete audit can answer lots of questions. But if you don’t know where to look or how to interpret the data, you’re missing out on valuable insights.
DIY SEO is a complete guide to creating your own process to understand the health of your online business.
In fact, it’s the exact process I use to audit 100’s of client websites for Easy Mode Media. Including what tools and services I use for each task and a wide range of alternatives to suit every budget (even free).
In this guide, I’m going to explain my complete process for 8 different pillars that I consider vital to understanding a complete SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Analysis.
These 8 SEO pillars are:
- Technical Audit
- Visual and User Experience Audit
- Site Speed Analysis
- Analytics Auditing
- Backlink and Off-Page Optimization
- Competitor Research
- Keyword Tracking and Research
- Local SEO Audit
Along the way, there are examples and a number of tips on how to fix errors and capitalize on opportunities for every section in the book.
This is an 96-page guide book. It looks into each of these areas and how they relate to the big picture of a healthy and effective website.
On top of that, you can also contact me with any further questions you have. A complete guide and one-on-one walkthrough of my SEO process for a fraction of the cost to get it done for you.
This deal won’t be staying at the price forever. Get started today.
Let’s dive into what to expect from each of the topics mentioned above.
1. Technical Audit
To start, we look at automating a website crawl. This identifies errors that have the potential to lower the user experience and make your site appear less trustworthy to Google.
We will look at broken links, long-redirect chains, resources not being indexed by Google, what a sitemap and robots.txt file do for a website, plus so much more.
Included in this section, we also look into on-page features of an audit. Factors such as meta descriptions, title tags and empty alt-texts of images all come into focus here.
By looking at all the factors on your website, there can be 1000’s of issues and ways to optimize a website just in this first section.
2. Visual and User Experience Audit
This is one area I find is often overlooked when an audit is performed, but skipping this is a mistake.
Sure, your landing pages might look good on your computer screen, but there are so many devices people use to explore the internet that you have to look into this much deeper.
We look at how to test your site for multiple screen sizes and what factors cause a bad user experience.
This user experience (or UX for short) is a buzzword for digital marketers, but it is crucial to get right.
With a good UX, you’ll notice people spend longer on your website and conversion rates increase.
3. Site Speed Analysis
This is often one of the biggest opportunities for website owners. Creating a fast website isn’t as easy as you might think. That’s why it has its own section.
First, we look at the best tools to use to get a good grasp on what is slowing your landing pages down.
Then, we investigate potential solutions for a number of common issues.
While your site may look incredible, if it is too slow, people won’t stick around to wait for the page to load.
As site speed only become more and more important, this is usually one of the best ways to increase rankings significantly.
4. Analytics Auditing
Data collected from users visiting your website can be confusing. Here, we look at two industry standard tools; Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
Between these two tools, you will be able to identify problem pages, content that engages your readers, what Google thinks your website is about, where a user is in the world and how they accessed your website.
Armed with this information, you can create a powerful marketing strategy. Identify the content you should create, pages that don’t convert well or target a specific country/city/language.
Understanding your audience is one vital aspect of a successful website and analytics are the key.
5. Backlink and Off-Page Optimization
Backlinks are often talked about as the “biggest SEO factor”, and there is some truth to this.
However, not all links are equal and some will potentially damage the rankings and image of your website.
Some might even get you a manual action from Google. If you’ve ever seen your organic traffic disappear overnight, there’s a good chance your site has been blacklisted by Google.
Learn how to identify the backlinks you should be targeting and whether disavowing backlinks is the right thing to do.
6. Competitor Research
I love competitor research. You learn so much about your niche and industry from what your competition is doing.
What backlinks are they creating? What keywords are they targeting? What content ranks well that you can outperform them on?
There are many valuable questions answered by competitor research and is often a tactic to use when the next step for a business strategy isn’t clear.
Clients I work with are always amazed at the data we can find out from competitors, even without having access to their website at all.
7. Keyword Tracking and Research
Without keyword research, opportunities are likely being missed. You might be answering a question that no one is searching for, or targeting a keyword that has zero chance of ranking on the first page of Google.
Here, I run through the tools I use to identify what terms people are searching for and realistic expectations of what can make that first page.
If you’re not doing keyword research correctly, you’re writing content with a blindfold on. You’re not seeing the bigger picture and secondary questions that would make a great addition to your content.
Tracking the progress of your keyword rankings is also a crucial thing to keep an eye on. Any sudden ranking spikes or dips can be a great opportunity or devastating threat to how much traffic you can expect from Google.
8. Local SEO Audit
Local SEO isn’t applicable to every website, but it’s important to understand if you’re business can benefit from this strategy.
If you run a local business, whether a brick and mortar store or service you’re offering others, understanding Local SEO is important to doing well in local search results.
In this section, we look at how to keep an eye on local SEO factors and create a Google My Business account.
We also look at the most important metrics and signals to pay attention to, as well as how to get more glowing reviews and referrals from your local community.
Ready to understand and improve your website SEO?
With these 8 areas combined, you will have all the tools at your disposal to audit, improve and maintain a strong SEO strategy.
You should look to audit your website 1-2 times a year. But this can get very costly. By learning DIY SEO, you’ll save money after the very first audit you run.
On top of that, you’ll learn best practices of Search Engine Optimization along the way, which will help you create better and more engaging content along the way.
Extras included with this guide book
I’m also offering my expertise to answer specific questions you have when going through the book. I can give personalized direction to help you really understand SEO and how to audit your website.
I love connecting with people who have SEO questions. I can help you get a huge amount of value beyond the expertise written in this guide.
Want to add a website audit checklist PDF to follow along with?
To go along with the DIY SEO ebook guide, you can print off a complete website audit checklist template to follow along with.
This checklist follows the chapters in this book, so you can keep track of what is and isn’t completed. That way, you’ll never overlook a crucial SEO factor again.
Do you have more questions? I would love to help answer them about this guide, or SEO in general.