What is a Technical SEO Audit?
A technical SEO audit is a process of checking the technical aspects of a site in order to determine if they are following Google best practices. If you want your website to be competitive in organic search it’s important to monitor the health of your website through a technical SEO audit. For most companies, SEO is one of the most important aspects of their business, generating the lowest costs per acquisition of any other marketing channel. If you’re not paying attention to the technical set up of your website, you can’t be competitive in SEO and you’re missing out on inbound traffic your site could be attracting.
Why is a Technical SEO Audit Important?
If your business intends to compete for rankings and traffic, your site must be following technical SEO best practices. The more competitive the industry, the more important this is. When a user performs a Google search, Google wants to give the person the best result for their search. But what is the best result? In simple terms, you could say the webpage with the best information on the search topic would be the best result; but what if 2 pages have equally good content? This is where technical SEO really matters. There are over 200 factors that Google uses to judge your webpage. If your site is not in compliance with technical SEO best practices but your competitors are, then their webpages will be served in front of yours. And since only 10 SERP results are on page one, you can imagine that it if you want to outpace your competition, you want to be better than they are from a technical perspective.
Razor Rank Technical SEO Services
Razor Rank's team has extensive experience with all aspects of technical search engine optimization. We can provide solutions for issues found and help with implementation. Our team can work alongside your developers and quarterback projects across multiple teams for complex projects.
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Technical SEO Audit Checklist
When performing a technical site audit there are a large number of items that should be checked, and a determination made as to whether best practices are being followed. It’s one thing to do a technical audit, but the most important part of the audit is not the issue identification, it’s the issue resolution. Below is a partial list of items that should be evaluated during a technical SEO audit.
What Tools Can be used for a Technical Website Audit?
There are many SEO tools that can help you with your site audit, these are just a few:
The Screaming Frog SEO tool is a website crawler that helps us improve onsite SEO, by extracting data & auditing for common SEO issues
Google Search Console
Google Search Console tools and reports help us measure your site's Search traffic and performance, fix issues, and make your site shine in Google Search results.
3 Parts of a Technical Website Audit
Although there are hundreds of items that can be evaluated in a technical audit, there are 3 high-level categories that should be considered in evaluating a site and determining the SEO strategy and direction to be used to make the site more competitive in organic search.
Technical SEO Audit
Often the most important aspect of a technical website audit is the content audit. You can have a wonderfully SEO compliant website with blazing page load speed, perfectly configured canonical tags, well configured rel=”next” and rel=”prev” tags, and so on... but if your content strategy is not well conceived and executed, you’ve missed the mark. Your website should have a formal content strategy, specifically designed to attract visitors interested in your products and services. The technical audit should review content strategy, and evaluate whether the target pages of the site have been set up to acquire broad phrase and long tail keywords. Each page should be assigned multiple keywords; Titles and meta data should be configured based on keyword research. Internal linking is also an important factor to evaluate in a technical audit.
A backlink audit is another important aspect of a technical audit. If your website has thousands of backlinks, they may provide powerful SEO value and the site can benefit from high domain authority, however, if a website has a significant number of low-quality backlinks, Google’s algorithm can identify these and demote the site in rankings. In the example below, a mattress retailer had cleared the technical audit – we resolved all issues, including content- but the rankings were terrible. You can see the red on the left, with keyword rankings on page 5-10 of SERPs. The backlink audit revealed thousands of toxic backlinks pointing at the site. Once they were removed, you can see where the rankings made a sharp increase, and almost all keywords popped onto page one and two of Google SERPs!
Technical Site Error Fixing is not ‘SEO Strategy’
Many companies subscribe to technical error checking dashboards and keep an eye on issues like, duplicate H1 tags, 404 errors, broken links and a litany of bugs they need to fix, and this is a great practice. Keeping your site healthy is critical in staying competitive in organic search. However, it is important to realize that technical error fixing is not ‘SEO strategy.’
SEO strategy starts after the bugs are fixed, and that strategy may consist of many tactics, like the creation of a formal content strategy, a title strategy, an internal linking strategy, a link building strategy, and many other items that contribute to the ongoing success of a website in organic search.