How to Audit a Website to Improve SEO and Conversions

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When was the last time you checked your website? If you’ve never audited your website before, it’s been a while since you did, or you’re planning a website redesign in the near future, use this post as your website audit checklist to make sure your website is prepared for maximum SEO and conversion results.

Next, let’s learn what a website audit is, why it’s important, and how to use the information to improve your SEO and conversions.

What is a Website Audit?

A website audit is an examination of page performance prior to full-scale search engine optimization (SEO) or website redesign. Auditing your website can determine whether or not it is optimized to meet your traffic goals, and if not, how you can improve it to increase performance.

Before we dive into the things to watch out for while auditing your website, let’s review some of the benefits of doing one. Here are some of the main benefits from a marketing perspective:

The Benefits of a Website Audit

  1. Website performance optimization
  2. Search engine optimization
  3. Conversion rate optimization
  4. Competitive analysis
  5. Identify problems

1. Website performance optimization

Website audits generally evaluate a site not only on its content but also on its technical performance.

As a result, an audit will give you the opportunity to inspect the robustness of your website’s technical framework and infrastructure, assess how search engine-friendly your website is, and determine how easy it is for users to navigate and find content. intuitively on your website.

2. Search engine optimization

By conducting a website audit, you will be able to identify any missed SEO opportunities and remediate any misdirected or poorly executed SEO errors (e.g. keyword stuffing, exact match anchor text links, etc.) across the entire content of your website.

It will also allow you to refocus your SEO efforts on users first and search engines second. This will protect you from constantly chasing changes to search ranking algorithms, which means you won’t apply bad practices just to appear at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs).

3. Conversion rate optimization

Website audits also allow you to re-evaluate the effectiveness of your website in terms of generating and converting leads. As a result, you’ll be able to spot any previously overlooked opportunities to convert visitors into leads so you can add relevant CTAs, as well as identify gaps in your landing pages so you can optimize them and increase conversions.

4. Competitive analysis

Conducting a website audit will allow you to compare your website with that of the competition. You can analyze how well you are ranking against the competition for keywords and determine potential new sources of income.

Using SEO audit tools, such as the HubSpot website classifier, to audit competitor websites to gather more information. You can learn how your competitors attract visitors and see how they get conversions.

Ultimately, this will help you think of new tactics and strategies for your site.

5. Identify problems

When you audit a website, you may find issues that are hurting your SEO and conversions. Maybe it’s broken links, hidden content, long page load times, or longer. Identifying these problems will help you repair problems that are diverting traffic.

As you can see, evaluating both the content and the technical aspects of your website will open up opportunities to dramatically improve the traffic and conversions your website generates.

Now that you know what a website audit is and why you should do one, let’s take a look at how to do one.

How to Audit a Website

  1. Run your website URL through a site audit tool
  2. Find technical errors
  3. Identify SEO issues
  4. Analyze design and UX
  5. Evaluate website content
  6. Generate a checklist of all site problems and recommended solutions

1. Run your website URL through a site audit tool

Before you start, you’ll want to find a website auditing tool that can help you analyze your website’s performance. When you use site auditing software to run your site, you can get specific recommendations and test your page performance.

2. Find technical errors

Once you’ve submitted your site to an audit tool, you’ll want to look for technical errors. These could be related to performance, SEO, mobile devices, security, and more. The technical structure of the site and the configuration of your site play an important role in the performance of your website for customers.

3. Identify SEO problems

Now, you’ll want to look at SEO-related issues so you can improve your search engine rankings. This could mean looking at meta descriptions, checking image alt text, and more.

4. Analyze design and UX

One of the things I like to look for when auditing a website is user experience. How does this layout work for your clients? Some programs have heat maps of the parts of their design that attract the most attention and what users read. This type of analysis will let you know how the overall design and user experience are affecting your visitors.

5. Evaluate the content of the website

An audit of a website will help you evaluate the content of the website, including blogs, website pages, etc. You’ll want to know how your current pages are stacking. Ask yourself, “Does my content rank well in search engines?” and “Is my performance and on-page SEO aligned with my traffic numbers?”

6. Generate a checklist of all site problems and recommended solutions

Lastly, when conducting a website audit, it is important to have a place to put a summary of all your findings. List the site issues and recommended fixes so that you can send that information to the appropriate teams.

Now let’s dive even more specifically so you know what to check for in this website audit.

Assessments to Take When Auditing Your Website

But first, enter your website in HubSpot’s Website Grader; This will give you an overview of your website’s strengths so that you can gauge your focus on each of the assessments that follow in this article.

How would you do? Have an idea of what website audit benefits you need the most? Here we go.

1. Website Audit for performance evaluation

In the first part of your website audit, you need to focus on how users navigate your website, from the home page to blog posts, landing pages, and any related content in between.

Make a list of the pages on your website and ask yourself the following questions to evaluate them for optimization opportunities:

Is your website optimized for maximum usability?

The more visitors you can attract to your website, the more opportunities you have to generate leads and ultimately customers. But only if your website works fine.

As I’m sure you can imagine, just having a website doesn’t guarantee results. As part of determining the overall efficiency of your website, your audit should check to make sure your site is designed with your visitors in mind. The layout and general navigability of your website should correspond with what a person would come to the site to search for, such as more information on a business-related topic, resources, product/pricing information, testimonials, etc. This will largely depend on your individual business.

The main goal here is to make it easier for people to get the information they are looking for. As a result, you will likely see conversion rates improve on their own.

To audit the usability of your website, consider the following:

  • Are all of our business’ top value propositions easily accessible through our top navigations / menu items?
  • Do we have a simple but intuitive website layout and page layout? Make sure the pages are not too cluttered; riddled with ads, CTAs, or links; or devoid of internal links entirely.
  • Are the conversion paths and / or the shopping cart or checkout processes intuitive? Are there a lot of distractions along the way that could create friction for your site visitors?

You may also consider doing some user testing with members of your target audience to ensure that you are effectively displaying the content they are looking for and that it is easy for them to navigate to the parts of your website that interest them.

How is the overall speed of your website?

Are there excessive page sizes and/or long page load and server response times? Does your site go down frequently? Site speed can suffer when image files are too large or when HTML and CSS need to be cleaned up, all of which can dramatically improve the speed of your site.

Ultimately, optimized and fast-loading pages will lead to higher visitor engagement, retention, and conversions. To quickly check the load time of a web page, download MozBar, a Moz toolbar that you can attach to your browser for simple page analysis every time you visit a website.

2. Website Audit SEO evaluation

Optimizing the performance of your website is crucial to retain visitors, but the question above is not the only one to ask yourself. You should also audit the content you are posting to make sure it really solves your visitors’ problems.

Is the content on your website of high quality?

When evaluating the quality of your content, think about it from the perspective of your target audience. Was this information satisfied? Did you answer all my questions? Can you give me all the relevant resources for this topic? Do I know what to do next?

Keep in mind that quality content must appeal to the interests, needs, and concerns of your buyers; be interesting and well written, provide valuable, comprehensive, and detailed information on a particular topic; and leave the reader with the next steps (such as calls to action, links to resources, etc.).

If you’re still unsure whether your content is high-quality, test it with this checklist: “How to tell if your marketing content is really valuable.”

Is your website search engine optimized?

Make sure all your web pages follow the best on-page SEO practices. To audit your content for on-page SEO, perform a keyword analysis in which you do the following:

  • Check out their analytics to review keyword performance. What keywords bring you the biggest gains in traffic and leads?
  • Evaluate how well you are considering keyword performance in your content strategy. How much relevant content are you adding to your website to target those keywords?
  • Review the basics of SEO on the page such as URLs, page titles, meta description, and text. Make sure keywords are included where relevant.

To help you conduct an on-page SEO audit of your content, read the “Step-by-Step Guide to Flawless On-Page SEO,” which also includes a free downloadable on-page SEO template to keep you on track.

3. Evaluation of the conversion rate

While high-quality search engine optimized content is a great way to increase your traffic numbers, what really counts is what happens once those visitors are on your website. Unless, of course, you don’t worry about conversions (ha!).

Is your website optimized for lead generation and conversions?

This is where optimized calls to action (CTAs), marketing offers, and landing pages play a big role in your website’s performance. Not only do they offer you opportunities to capture visitor information so you can keep track of potential customers, but they also keep your visitors engaged with your content and your brand.

To audit your website for maximum conversion potential, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How many marketing offers do I have in my content arsenal to drive through to landing pages?
  • Do I have a variety of marketing offers that appeal to all of my different buyer personas?
  • Do I have landing pages / conversion forms on my website to get started?
  • How optimized are those landing pages?
  • Do I have conversion opportunities for visitors at different stages of the funnel?
  • Am I using calls to action effectively? Am I missing opportunities to include calls to action on multiple pages of my website?

For more information on CTA selection, see our post, “How to Select the Right CTA for Every Page on Your Website.”

4. Technical evaluation

Once you’ve tackled the top three goals of auditing a website, it’s time for a developer or someone in your IT department to do a technical assessment. You can also hire an exterior …

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