Website audit is a comprehensive examination process of a website to evaluate its performance, security, speed, and other aspects. This is commonly performed by an SEO specialist or website developer when they aim to optimize a website.
But what does website auditing entail exactly? If you're still puzzled about how to do it, let's explore the following Talentport article!
What is Website Audit?
Website audit is a step-by-step examination and improvement of various aspects of a website comprehensively. This includes technical elements, user experience, and SEO.
Throughout this process, you will focus on fixing broken links or images that don't appear, enhancing website speed, and assessing security levels. The purpose is to optimize the website to reach its full potential.
Things to Consider During Website Audit
During the website audit process, there are several crucial factors that demand your attention for an optimal audit. Here are the aspects you should focus on:
Content and Website Structure
In this phase, examine the website's performance concerning its content. Several elements require scrutiny, including keyword usage, title tags, images, and their descriptions. Understanding which sections will appear in search engines based on keywords is vital to enhancing the potential for a higher ranking.
The second audit aspect is the website's design. Check whether it's user-friendly and mobile-friendly. Both are essential to ensure users find the website visually appealing and easy to navigate. User experience profoundly impacts how long visitors stay on your website.
In addition to an attractive design, users prefer fast-loading websites. This preference extends to search engines as well; website speed significantly affects ranking. Therefore, it's crucial to address this aspect during the audit process.
Technical Aspects of the Website
You should also examine the technical condition of the website. Ensure the website is indexed by Google. This indexing status directly influences whether the website can be found on search engines.
Pay close attention to the website's security. Make sure there are no issues such as data theft, hacking attempts, or unauthorized access to your website.
How to Audit a Website
Now that you know what areas to examine during an audit, it's time to understand the proper way to conduct a website audit. Here are the steps:
Check Website Structure
The first step in website auditing is to assess your website's appearance. Navigate through the website to evaluate the design's user-friendliness. Identify any intrusive pop-ups or disruptive elements within the website. Also, ensure that the website covers the keywords necessary to rank the products you intend to promote.
Without proper navigation, users and Google's web crawlers will struggle to access your site effectively. During the audit, confirm that every navigation element directs users to the intended pages. Avoid cluttering the navigation menu with irrelevant items.
Ensure Mobile-Friendly Design
Nowadays, most users access websites via their smartphones. Therefore, it's essential to ensure that your website functions seamlessly on mobile devices. You can use Google's tools to check your website's mobile-friendliness: Google's Mobile-Friendly Test.
Check Robots.Txt and XML Sitemap
Robots.txt informs Google about which pages should and shouldn't be indexed. XML sitemap lists the website's pages, aiding Google in understanding its structure. Both are crucial for proper indexing and visibility in search results.
HTTPS ensures a more secure website by encrypting data exchanged between the website and users using SSL. This prevents hackers from stealing data or injecting viruses into the website.
Inspect Broken Links and Error 404
Broken links are inaccessible links on a website, while Error 404 is an HTTPS status code indicating that the requested webpage does not exist on the server. During the audit, ensure that all links and pages on the website are accessible and functional.
Review Meta Title and Meta Description
Every webpage should have a meta title and meta description. These elements facilitate Google's indexing process, attract traffic, and promote content. As a crucial part of website auditing, ensure that each page has compelling meta titles and descriptions.
SEO Website Audit Tools
Website SEO audit is a common practice among SEO specialists. It is done to optimize websites and formulate SEO strategies. To facilitate the audit process, you can use several SEO website audit tools. Here are some recommendations:
Screaming Frog is a comprehensive SEO website audit tool. Its features help you analyze and audit various technical SEO issues. It can identify problems such as broken links, duplicate content, generate XML sitemaps, pages with suboptimal metadata, and much more. The tool offers both free and paid versions, with the paid version offering more advanced features.
Google Search Console
This is a free website audit tool. Google Search Console allows you to monitor your website's performance in Google's organic search results. It informs you about domains linking to your site and analyzes pages with high traffic. It also lets you check keyword rankings.
SEMrush Site Audit
SEMrush Site Audit is a powerful tool that can diagnose over 130 technical SEO issues. It provides reliable dashboards and reports. Its advantages include detailed analysis and reliable reporting features.
DeepCrawl can monitor website performance and speed, test XML sitemaps, and check content quality. It can diagnose various website issues, including analysis of page quantity, URLs, broken links, and the number of H1 tags. DeepCrawl also offers impressive historical data display features, allowing you to compare audit results and identify issues that need attention. It comes with a cost of around $14 per month for one project or $62 for three projects. However, there is a free 14-day trial period for users to evaluate its features before subscribing.
Ahrefs is one of the best website audit tools. Ahrefs is a tool that offers a complete feature for SEO needs. Keyword research, content comparison, and of course, website audit.
Auditing with Ahrefs is really easy. You just need to put the main domain of the website, and let Ahrefs do the rest. Ahrefs will analyze and let us know if it found an issue.
Page Modified is a tool that extracts technical SEO data from a website and organizes it into a spreadsheet format. It can identify internal links, duplicate content, and XML sitemaps on the website. Moreover, Page Modified can diagnose various SEO issues on site pages, such as pages without H1 headers, empty title tags, and pages with missing or suboptimal meta descriptions. While it offers free access, some features are limited. To enjoy all of Page Modified's features, users are required to pay around $5 per month.