Every summer, I take my green Toyota Echo to the dealership for an annual checkup. I do this as a preventative measure to make sure that I address problems proactively and make the most of my investment. I love my car and I want it to do as well as it can for as long as possible!
An SEO review (aka SEO audit) works much the same way for your website. It is a checkup for your website to determine if your investment is reaching its full potential. You want to make sure that potential customers can find this awesome website on which you’ve spent time and money.
SEO Review Options
In theory, you can conduct your own SEO review. There are books available (The Art of SEO comes to mind) which explain in detail the components of an SEO review. However, if you are not technically inclined, this can be a rather daunting task.
Further, there are free or almost-free SEO reviews available online. They tend to spit out a basic report after going through your website with information you may or may not find actionable. Again, it depends on your level of technical expertise.
The best option, in our humble opinion, is to bite the bullet and have an expert SEO professional conduct the SEO review. The benefits of having an SEO expert take care of this for you are obvious:
- You have a day job, the tasks of which probably don’t include tedious SEO reviews.
- When you hire an expert, you know the information you’re getting is accurate and timely.
- An SEO professional can provide further assistance after the SEO review is completed and help develop an SEO strategy for your website.
Components of an SEO Review
There are literally hundreds of factors to look at during a thorough SEO Review. However, generally, we can fit these tasks into three buckets:
Technical & Architectural
It is important that your your site is solid from a pure technical standpoint. Here we look at things like load time and the presence of a sitemap. We also make sure redirects are done properly and that your URLs are search engine-friendly. Code quality is another factor that fits into this bucket.
It’s all about content! Do you have rich, fresh, and unique content on your pages? If not, you’re probably not going to rank well no matter what you do. An SEO review looks for spelling and grammar errors, use of title/header tags, internal linking (don’t want too many on a given page!), keyword cannibalization, and much more.
Off-page SEO is all about external links and competitive analysis. There are good ways and bad ways to get links to your website. An SEO review can make sure you’ve got it right and are not getting penalized for doing something that goes against best practices. For example, you don’t want links from known brokers (remember, link schemes that promise you thousands of links are evil). You can also find out who’s linking to your competitors.
Getting Started with an SEO Review
If you’ve decided that you want to move forward with an SEO review, good for you! You will not regret it. Several good companies offer high-quality SEO reviews, so you have plenty of options.
Make sure to do your homework and get a sample report from potential service providers so you know what you’re getting. Also, make sure your technical team is on board with the SEO review, because otherwise the information won’t do you much good. You will need somebody to implement changes once the SEO review reveals existing problems.
Web Gnomes specializes in detailed SEO reviews, and we would love to work with you!