What to Expect from an SEO Technical Audit and Why it Matters

SEO is all about ensuring that your website wins when it comes to search engine ranking. There is no point in having a great website if the right people do not see it. If you don’t rank in a top spot for the relevant keywords that promote your product or service, you may as well not bother.  

Keyword research and targeting is essential for effective SEO, but just as, if not more, important, and very often overlooked, are technical SEO audits

A technical SEO audit should include a thorough examination of various technical aspects of a website to identify issues that may affect its search engine visibility and performance. An added and important bonus is that a speeded-up and optimised website will also enhance the user experience. 

Here are some key components typically included in a technical SEO audit:

1. Site Structure and Navigation

Assess the website’s structure and navigation to ensure it is logical, intuitive, and user-friendly. This involves evaluating the hierarchy of pages, URL structure, internal linking, and navigation menus to facilitate easy access to content for both users and search engine crawlers.

2. Indexing and Crawlability

Analyze how search engine crawlers access and index the website’s pages. Check for any barriers that may hinder crawling and indexing, such as robots.txt directives, meta robots tags, and noindex directives. Ensure that important pages are crawlable and indexable to maximize visibility on search engine result pages (SERPs).

3. Page Speed and Performance

Evaluate the website’s loading speed and overall performance, including factors such as server response time, page load times, and resource optimization (images, scripts, CSS). Optimize page speed to improve user experience and satisfy search engine ranking algorithms, which favor fast-loading websites.

4. Mobile-Friendliness

Assess the website’s compatibility and responsiveness across various mobile devices and screen sizes. With Google’s mobile-first indexing, ensuring a mobile-friendly experience is crucial for SEO success. Check for mobile usability issues and optimize the site for mobile users to enhance visibility and rankings on mobile search results.

5. Schema Markup and Structured Data

Implement structured data markup (e.g., Schema.org) to provide search engines with additional context about the website’s content. This helps search engines understand and display rich snippets, such as product information, reviews, events, and FAQs, in search results, enhancing visibility and click-through rates.

6. Security and HTTPS

Ensure that the website is secure and served over HTTPS to protect user data and enhance trustworthiness. Check for SSL/TLS certificate installation, proper redirection from HTTP to HTTPS, and security measures to prevent hacking, malware, and other security threats. Secure websites are favored by search engines and may receive a ranking boost.

7. Site Accessibility and Internationalization

Evaluate the website’s accessibility for users with disabilities and compliance with web accessibility standards (e.g., WCAG). Assess internationalization settings, such as hreflang tags, to properly target and serve content to users in different languages and regions, optimizing global SEO performance.

8. Analytics and Tracking Setup

Verify proper implementation of analytics tracking codes (e.g., Google Analytics) and other tracking tools to monitor website traffic, user behavior, and SEO performance metrics. Ensure accurate data collection and reporting to inform SEO strategies and measure the effectiveness of optimization efforts.

By conducting a comprehensive technical SEO audit and addressing the identified issues, website owners and SEO professionals can optimize their websites for better search engine visibility, user experience, and overall performance.