How to do ON-Page SEO Audit in 10 steps
“Google’s mission is to deliver the world’s information to users in an accessible and useful way. Page speed is becoming increasingly important in achieving this mission, especially on the mobile web. We are now starting to see strong correlations between fast page load times and higher search rankings.”
Above quote exceptionally describes the requirements of a perfect website that can correctly crawl, index, and render by Google. Through SEO audit, you can spot the problems or errors which prevent your site from ranking on Google and other search engines.
What is SEO Audit
SEO Audit is a first and foremost step of the SEO process, and it provides a clean foundation to your website.
If you have developed a website and it is not at the top of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP), there is a high possibility of massive SEO flaws. These errors stop Google from ranking your website. Therefore, SEO audit is a necessity of refined internet sites.
There are several free and paid tools available for different steps of SEO Audit or you can take help of digital experts.
SEO Audit is required for both newly developed and existing websites. However, processes and types of audits are different for both types of websites.
A quick monthly and full-fledged quarterly audit is mandatory for regular website maintenance.
Types of SEO Audit
There are three main types of SEO audit:
· On-Page SEO
· Off-Page SEO
· Technical SEO
All three types of SEO are required for ranking in search engines. In this article, we will primarily focus on On-Page SEO.
On-page SEO audits optimise a website that appeals to both customers and search engines. Backend elements optimization of every website page occurs in this type of SEO. Which makes a website delectable for users.
Here is 10 important checklists for On-Page SEO audit:
- Content quality
- Keyword Research
- Canonical URL
- Meta Tags
- Meta Description
- H1 tag
- Internal linking
- Image optimization
- Website speed
- Mobile friendly website
1. Content Quality
Content is the main part of communication which provides information to visitors about your venture. It should be
- Short and crisp
- Information in chunks (Subheadings, Small paragraphs, Bullet lists)
- Use images and videos
- Avoid copying
- No duplicate (Repetitive) content
You can use standard audit tools COPYSCAPE and Screamingfrog to check plagiarism.
2. Keyword Research
Keywords play an important role in SERP ranking. Using the right keywords provides a massive number of clicks, impressions and CTR
I preferably use Google Keyword Planner and SemRush as all keyword tools get their data from Google Keyword Planner.
- Use keyword research tools to find keywords with high search volume and low competition.
- Avoid using of forced keywords
- Do not use a pile of keywords
- Include keywords in titles and description both.
3. Canonical URL
Canonical tag stays in the code of an individual page of a website that guides browser engines which URL you want them to index. It is the most representative page of a website from a set of duplicate pages. Your website should be accessible only on one legitimate URL with original content.
<link rel="canonical" href="https://infinitepixels.co.in/" />
For instance: Here are four versions of the same URL. These look the same but Google finds them differently.
- http://www. examples.com/
- https://www. examples.com/
These all should be end up on the legitimate URL
If you ignore this tag, Google will take more time to find your original website. Moreover, when visitors access duplicate pages, they leave the website early due to poor experience. It leads to high bounce rate and low ranking.
4. Meta Tags
Meta tags are the title of a page shown by search results. These are like “small elements with a large impact.” It is the second most important aspect in On-Page optimization.
For example: if you search “home decor items” on Google, you will get pepperfry as one of the top results with page title tag “Buy Home Decor Items.” Title tags with Meta description gives maximum visibility about your website content.
- Title tags should be short (maximum 60 characters) because search engines will cut down long tags by ellipsis.
- Meta tags should contain keywords in the beginning of the title.
5. Meta Description
This attribute is a summary of a page which appears on the SERP to target customers. Therefore, it is needed that Meta description should be well-written and delightful with relatable keywords.
An optimal Meta description is 155-160 characters or less.
Meta description does not directly affect browser ranking. But a defined meta description can provide you high CTR (Click Through Rate).
6. H1 tags
H1 is a HTML tag that indicates a heading on a website. H1 tags are the most visually notable content on the page. These tags provide information to crawlers and visitors about the site content. Hence, search engines mark this attribute as user friendly which improves the ranking of your website.
How you can add an H1 tag in HTML
An opening H1 tag (<h1>), enter the page title, then add a closing H1 tag (</h1>).
<h1>How to do SEO Optimization</h1>
- HTML has 6 different heading tags H1, H2, H3, H4, H5 and H6. They used to differentiate the type of headings.
- Focus on long tail target keywords for h1 tag that can answer the user intent.
- H1 should be from 20-70 characters.
- Do not use multiple H1 in one page.
7. Internal linking
A procedure of linking one page of a website to another page in the same domain is called internal linking. If any page is not linked to other pages that is called “Orphan Page.”
Internal linking is the best way to increase click rate and retention time. Therefore, a low ranking page can also get better ranking if it is attached with a high rank page.
Linking navigates to users and Google as well.
Types of internal linking
- Contextual links
- Navigational links
- Footer links
- Image links
- An appropriate and clear anchor text drives more traffic and provides a satisfied user experience.
- Upload WordPress plugins to detect internal links and avoid repetition.
- Create content regularly in the form of blogs or articles to create more links. Moreover, develop multiple pages so that you can connect them internally.
8. Image optimization
Images on the pages attract and hold the users. Use high quality images with proper size, resolution and relative to body text.
- Image size can reduce the page speed. Hence, for better user experience, compress the images without degrading the quality by using tools such as TinyPNG . Adobe Photoshop has feature to save for web option that reduce the size of image without compromising in quality.
- Use relevant keywords for image file names when you upload on page. Do not use underscore because search engines do not recognise it. Replace space between words with hyphens.
For example: (Red-velvet-cake-in-bakery)
- Mention image Alt tags to describe an image. It is not only necessary for SEO ranking but very helpful for visually impaired readers. Because low or no vision users use audio prompter for screen reading.
In other aspects, Google is poor to crawl images in-depth, so alternative text helps the search engines to find relatable pictures.
9. Website speed
Page speed is an important character of delivering the best user experience to the visitors. There are many factors that can hamper loading speed such as page size, network, database, coding problems and server. Slow page speed can increase bounce rate and slow conversion.
To fix these issues, you can take help of a web developer. For a website page download, it should take a maximum 3 seconds for better Google ranking.
Take the help of below mentioned website load speed tester tools to know loading performance and needed improvements.
10. Mobile friendly website
It is evident that 60% of Google search comes from mobile. Hence, since 2015, mobile friendliness has been a ranking factor.
People spend more time on mobile than desktop or laptop. Therefore, your website should be adjustable and responsive on any type of screen for ameliorate user experience.
Use Google mobile friendly testing tool to check mobile friendliness.
Choose mobile friendly configuration for mobile optimization.
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