Website Audits: are they Necessary in 2021?
13th August, 2021Start Reading
Conducting a website audit benefits any business looking to increase its online presence. But what is a website audit and how do you even audit a website? In this article, we look at everything you should know about website audits including the different types of website audits and how to audit a website.
What is a Website Audit?
Website audits are an analysis of a business’s website to identify discrepancies that may result in Google penalties. Penalties affect ranking on Google’s search engine rankings page (SERP). Website audits are an essential measure to improve the efficiency and visibility of a website. Audits improve Google search ranking while increasing site traffic and performance. A website audit is important because it presents a business with an exceptional opportunity for growth online.
Benefits of Website Audits
Website Performance Optimization
Website audits typically examine a site for not only its content but also for its technical performance. Therefore, an audit will give you an opportunity to explore the robustness of your website’s technical framework and infrastructure. It will also allow you to inspect how friendly your site is to search engines and assess how easy it is for users to navigate and intuitively find content on your website.
Search Engine Optimization
As a result of conducting a website audit, you will be able to identify any missed SEO opportunities and remedy and misguided or poorly executed SEO pitfalls (e.g. keyword stuffing, exact match anchor text links, etc.) throughout the content of your website.
Furthermore, a website audit will also allow you to re-focus your SEO efforts on users first and search engines second. This will safeguard you from constantly chasing changes to search ranking algorithms, meaning you won't be applying misguided practices just to show up at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs).
Conversion Rate Optimization
Thirdly, website audits enable you to re-evaluate the effectiveness of your website in terms of lead generation and conversion. Due to this, you will be able to spot any previously overlooked opportunities to convert visitors into leads so you can add relevant CTAs, as well as identify deficiencies in your landing pages so you can optimize them to boost conversions.
As you can see, assessing both the content and technical aspects of your website will open up opportunities to drastically improve the traffic and conversions your website generates.
Different Types of Website Audits
Different types of website audits cover different areas. It suggested that a combination of different audits be conducted to gain a comprehensive understanding and analysis of the website.
Competitive website audit
In order to create a better strategy that sets you apart from other competing brands, you need to have insight into how your website is performing against other leaders in your industry and what they are doing which is working to their advantage. This type of audit captures a full picture of what competitors are doing for search engine optimisation (SEO). A business should note what is working and what is not. This gives the business an idea of what they can target by observing what your competitors are doing right, you can replicate and improve on these successful tactics.
You can move forward faster when you know how to offer the best answer to search queries.
You not only need your web page indexed and ranking, but you will also be ahead when you understand your competition and which actionable strategies to implement. It is no longer sufficient to be present online, you need to target the right markets and attract qualified customers for your business products and services.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the practice of making websites attractive to individuals online as well as search engines resulting in a high ranking on the search results and increased organic traffic on the site. SEO audits focus on technical areas that impact how the website ranks on the search engine result pages. The audit covers aspects such as page loading time and authority checks and helps you to come up with a strategy that will ensure you improve your SEO standings and make the website more visible to online visitors.
Technical Website Audit
This type of website audit allows you to get data on your current state of affairs for things such as tags, page loading times, navigation and more. From that data that comes from this type of audit, it is important that you prioritise the things that need to fix or improved based on the severity of the problem. You will want to make all of these elements work together to enhance site navigation and to help the right customers find the site, rather than simply focus on placing content for search bots.
How to Audit a Website
Select a site audit tool
There are many tools that a business can use in order to conduct a website audit. Some of the premium paid site tools that can be used include SEMrush or other niche free website auditors. Using these site tools allow you to gain a report of your website of all the things that may need to be fixed.
Run your website URL through the site audit tool
After choosing the tool you wish to use to audit your website, all you have to do is enter your website into the tool. It does all the work for you by crawling your website and extracting key information for you to use.
The website auditing process includes
- User engagement
- User experience
- Site health
- Website performance
Identify any Issues
Following a website audit, a business receives a summary report including any discrepancies discovered. It also provides the most effective way to correct them. Issues with your website can include technical issues such as broken images and links as well as site and page load times. While these don't seem very important to SEO initiatives, they can actually affect your SEO initiatives. Identifying these issues is imperative as rectifying them allows for improved online presence and the overall user-friendliness of the website.
Identifying SEO problems may overlap with some of the technical issues. Common issues identified in an SEO audit include duplicate, short, long or missing title tags or meta descriptions.
Checklist of problems to address
It is important to have a comprehensive list of all the things that must be fixed on your site. Some of these technical and SEO issues can be fixed yourself, but some of them may be too complex and thus it is suggested to seek help from a professional. You should compile a list of all the things you think you could do yourself and a separate list of the things that you may need professional help with.
Website audits should be conducted regularly in order to identify any areas of improvement and weakness. Regular website audits keep businesses agile and aligned with Google’s best practices. Typically, website audits can be tricky and that’s why we recommend hiring a professional to take the guesswork out of website audits. Here at Socialmindr, we perform website audits for our clients in order to identify any areas of weakness within the website.