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How to Conduct a Technical SEO Audit Like a Pro

How to Conduct a Technical SEO Audit Like a Pro

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In the world of digital marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is crucial for driving organic traffic and improving online visibility. A technical SEO audit is an essential part of any SEO strategy, ensuring that your website is optimized for search engine algorithms and can be easily crawled and indexed. Here's how to conduct a technical SEO audit like a pro.

1. Start with a Crawl

Before you do anything else, you need to understand how search engines are currently interacting with your site. Use tools like Google Search Console, Screaming Frog, or Ahrefs to crawl your website. This will give you an overview of your site's structure and highlight any immediate issues such as broken links, duplicate content, or page errors.

Example: When using Screaming Frog to crawl your site, you might find that several pages return 404 errors because they were removed or relocated without proper redirection.

2. Check for Mobile-Friendliness

With mobile searches increasingly surpassing desktop searches, having a mobile-friendly website is non-negotiable. Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool can help you determine if your web pages are optimized for mobile devices.

Example: Running the test might reveal that some elements on your page are too close together on mobile screens, making it difficult for users to interact with those elements.

3. Analyze Site Speed

Site speed is a critical ranking factor. Tools like [Google PageSpeed Insights](https://pagespeed.web.dev/) provide valuable insights into how quickly your pages load on both desktop and mobile devices and offer suggestions for improvement.

Example: PageSpeed Insights could indicate that large image files are slowing down your page load times. Compressing these images could significantly improve speed.

4. Review Your Site Architecture

A well-organized site architecture helps search engines understand the hierarchy and importance of content on your website. Ensure that your navigation is logical and that key pages are no more than three clicks away from the homepage.

Example: You may discover that some important product pages are buried deep within the site structure, requiring five or more clicks from the homepage to reach them.

5. Examine Indexation

Check which of your pages are actually being indexed by search engines using the "site:" search operator in Google (e.g., "site:yourdomain.com"). Compare this list against your sitemap to ensure all important pages are being indexed.

Example: If you find out that several new blog posts aren't appearing in indexation results, there might be an issue with how these pages are linked within your site or possibly even a 'noindex' tag mistakenly placed on them.

6. Evaluate On-page Elements

On-page elements such as title tags, meta descriptions, header tags (H1s), and alt text should be optimized for relevancy and keywords without overstuffing them.

Example: You may notice that some of your title tags exceed the optimal length of 50-60 characters or don’t include target keywords relevant to their respective pages.

7. Assess Internal Linking Structure

Internal linking helps distribute page authority throughout your website and guides visitors through their journey on your site. Look for opportunities to link related content naturally within blog posts or other web pages.

Example: An audit could reveal missed opportunities where one high-authority article doesn't link to another relevant piece of content within the same domain that could benefit from additional traffic and authority transferal.

8. Inspect External Links

Backlinks remain one of the top ranking factors in SEO; however, not all backlinks are created equal. Use tools like Moz’s Link Explorer or Ahrefs’ Site Explorer to analyze incoming links’ quality and relevance.

Example: The analysis might show some toxic backlinks from spammy websites which could negatively affect rankings if not disavowed properly via Google Search Console.

9. Verify HTTPS Status

Security is paramount in today’s internet landscape; thus Google favors sites using HTTPS encryption over HTTP ones. Make sure all versions of URLs redirect correctly to their secure HTTPS counterparts.

Example: During verification, you might find certain resources loading over HTTP instead of HTTPS causing mixed-content issues which can compromise security signals sent to search engines.

10. Check XML Sitemaps & Robots.txt File

Ensure that XML sitemaps are up-to-date with current URLs listed correctly and submitted via Google Search Console while also verifying robots.txt files aren’t unintentionally blocking important resources from being crawled.

Example: You may find outdated URLs in the sitemap leading crawlers astray or directives in robots.txt file mistakenly blocking access to CSS/JS files necessary for rendering page layouts properly.

By following these steps diligently during a technical SEO audit process:

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  • Crawl Analysis: Detected multiple instances where server response was slow affecting crawl efficiency.

  • Mobile Usability: Identified clickable elements too close together impairing user experience on smartphones.

  • Page Speed Insights: Found uncompressed images hindering load times across various landing pages.

  • Site Architecture Review: Uncovered key service pages nested too deeply within navigation structure limiting accessibility.

  • Indexation Examination: Discovered recent articles missing from SERPs due to incorrect noindex directives applied.

  • On-page Element Optimization: Tweaked overly long title tags incorporating primary keywords succinctly.

  • Internal Link Building: Created strategic links between high-value content pieces boosting overall domain authority.

  • External Link Assessment: Pinpointed harmful backlinks recommending removal through disavowal requests filed with Google Search Console.

  • HTTPS Verification: Corrected mixed-content warnings ensuring all assets loaded securely enhancing trust signals perceived by crawlers.

  • Sitemap & Robots.txt Validation: Updated XML sitemaps reflecting accurate URL structures while revising robots.txt file permissions allowing full resource accessibility by bots.

You can ensure every aspect contributing towards organic ranking potential has been thoroughly scrutinized leaving no stone unturned in pursuit of peak performance within SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). With continuous monitoring adjustments based upon findings derived during audits success becomes less about luck more about precision execution strategy implementation elevating brand presence online effectively efficiently like never before!

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