If you’ve invested time and resources in creating a website for your business, it’s important to make sure that your site is doing everything you need it to do, and that includes pulling in your target audience and converting those visitors to customers. As technology is constantly evolving, it’s not enough to simply design a beautiful website and wait for the magic to happen. Instead, you need to evaluate your website regularly in order to find problems and make improvements. Site audits are one way to identify how to improve your site, increase traffic, and ultimately make more sales.
What Do Site Audits Involve?
A website audit is a checkup that examines every aspect of your website’s structure, content, and functionality. While some audits focus exclusively on a single area, such as search engine optimization (SEO) or content, the ideal approach is to do a comprehensive audit that covers every component of your website’s design and performance. The following are some of the main areas that an audit will typically cover.
Search engine optimization refers to a myriad of factors that affect how visible your website is to search engines and how well the site ranks in search results for selected keywords. One of the things an SEO audit will do is make sure that your site is being indexed and crawled by the major search engines. In addition, it will examine on-page elements that can affect a site’s ranking, such as keyword use, URLs, title tags, image tags, and meta descriptions. An audit may also look at off-page issues like the number of backlinks and the number of domains linking to your site as well as the number of shares the site receives on social media.
The overall design of your website can play a big role in attracting visitors and directing them into the sales funnel. Thus, a site audit should examine all of the site’s design components to make sure users are getting the best possible experience when they visit. An audit will typically look at whether the design of the website is up to date and visually appealing and whether all branding elements (e.g. logos, images, and colors) are consistent. In addition, an audit will check how easy the site is to navigate.
The technical aspects of your website affect how well the site functions and how easily visitors can access it. For example, your site needs to render correctly on all major browsers and mobile platforms. Plugins, security protocols, SSL certificates, and social media integration should all be checked to see if updates are needed. It’s also important to make sure each page loads quickly.
Your website’s content is at the heart of your relationship with your customers. Content provides a way to engage with customers, to establish a voice, to answer questions and solve problems, and to give visitors a reason to return. The key to making content an effective part of your digital marketing strategy is to keep it fresh and relevant. An audit will look at the quality of the content on your site and check for duplications. An audit can also evaluate what types of content or what topics are the most successful at converting customers.
What Are The Benefits Of Site Audits?
A site audit provides a complete picture of what your website contains and how all of those elements are working together. More importantly, an audit can help you find flaws in your site’s design that are negatively impacting your business. A thorough audit can offer the following benefits:
- an increase in traffic
- an increase in conversions
- greater visibility to search engines
- more effective SEO
- a better user experience
- higher quality content
- a more effective content strategy
- savings on marketing expenses
How Is A Site Audit Performed?
To perform your own site audits, you’ll need an exhaustive checklist to make sure you don’t miss any steps, and you’ll also need some specialized software tools to help you collect and analyze data. See the checklist below to get an idea of what the process entails.
A Typical Auditing Checklist
Though not a comprehensive list, the following are some of the common steps in the site audit process.
- Check to see what pages are being indexed
- Check to see how often the site is being crawled
- Check to see if each landing page is mobile friendly
- Check for 404, internal server, redirect, and other errors
- Check for dynamic and too-long URLs
- Check for broken links
- Check for pages with duplicate title tags or descriptions
- Check for duplicated content
- Check to see if each landing page contains one or two paragraphs of readable text
- Check to see if the content is unique, authoritative, and helpful
- Check the ratio of content to advertising on each page
- Check on-page content for keywords and variations
- Check URLs, image file names, and descriptions for keywords
- Check to see if any content is being blocked by the robots.txt
- Check for both hierarchical and vertical linking structures within the website
- Check to see if XML site maps are in place
- Check to see if SSL certificates have expired
- Check the loading time for each page
- Check for relevant social share buttons
- Check for a link to a blog
How We Can Help
Performing a site audit is a complex and time-consuming task, and without specialized knowledge of web development and digital marketing, it can be difficult for a business owner to glean helpful insights from audit results. That’s why many people turn to professionals for help. At Webdirexion, we offer comprehensive site audits for our clients, give detailed recommendations, and make any changes needed to improve their website’s performance. Contact us today to learn more about how a site audit can help you increase your traffic and make more sales.
Briana is our content maven at Webdirexion bringing writing, editing, SEO, and social media skills to the team. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a B.A. in Communication Studies and has served as an “Ambassador for Global Awareness” a volunteer assignment to promote civil rights and social action.
At Webdirexion she is helping with writing, editing, quality checks, and learning page layout and split testing using the Divi WordPress theme.