How to: Perform a website SEO health check
Many digital marketers know a lot about SEO, but struggle to understand the big picture.
One of the most important macro skills we develop at CandidSky is the ability to interpret how healthy a website is from an SEO perspective. One of the best ways to determine the health of your website is to perform a technical check-up. It will tell you what you need to do to improve your SEO and how your competitors are doing. Continue reading for a few hints and tips on what to look for.
Check your meta data
The most important item of metadata on your site is page title tags. Each page on the site must have a unique and relevant title tag, which explains to search engines, what the focus of the page is. Additionally, the inclusion of a meta description for each page improves user experience, as well as increasing the likelihood that a user will click onto your site.
Check your sitemap.xml and robots.txt files
Make sure your site has a sitemap and a robots.txt file. Sitemaps are a sign of an organised and easily indexable site, which is good for SEO. A site with good SEO will also have a robots.txt file with no major disallows. It’s important that the robots.txt exists and that it’s not disallowing the crawlers from indexing important areas of your site. e.g.
Check your site speed or load time
Google ranks a site high only if the site has a good load time. If your site is slow, then SEO will suffer. By using a free tool such as Pingdom, you can test your site speed, as well as getting an indication of how you are performing versus your competitors. If your site speed is between 1 – 3 seconds, then it’s categorised as a fast loading site, so thumbs up.
Check your on-site content
A site needs continual, updated content in order to rank well. It’s very difficult to sustain good SEO rankings without consistently relevant content output.
Healthy content marketing is an essential ingredient of first class SEO. By having a consistent flow of fresh and well-written content, either on a company blog or simply on product or category pages, will prompt search engines to crawl your website regularly. This dramatically increases the likelihood of it being more prominent in organic search listings.
Much like ‘a healthy body means a healthy mind’, ‘an optimised site means optimal rankings’. Follow our quick health check steps, maintain each stage and your organic rankings will improve.