key steps to audit your website to get a better outcome
A website audit is a critical process that can help you identify issues on your site that may be affecting its performance.
By conducting an audit, you can uncover technical SEO issues, content gaps, and other problems that are holding your site back. In this way, you can develop an actionable plan to improve your site's performance, increase traffic, and boost your search engine rankings.
In this article, I will outline the key steps to audit your website and achieve better outcomes.
What is a website audit?
A website audit is a comprehensive analysis of a website's overall health and performance. A website audit aims to identify any issues that may be negatively impacting the site's visibility, usability, and search engine ranking.
A website audit typically involves examining various elements of a website, including its technical infrastructure, content, user experience, and backlink profile.
By conducting a thorough website audit, website owners and marketers can gain insights into areas that need improvement and develop a plan to enhance the site's overall performance.
How to do a website audit step by step?
1. Choose the perfect online website audit tools
There are plenty of tools available online which you can use for your website audit. Different tools are used for different purposes. You have to check different things on your website, so you should run a variety of tools.
For instance, if you want to check your website Errors, then you should run an error-handling tool. Otherwise, when you want to perform a content SEO check, you need to run an SEO tool.
Be sure you are using the correct tool for the correct operation. There are numerous tools available to perform the same tasks, and you should find out the best ones.
Not all tools are highly qualified. Show your initial task is to find out the exact tool.
2. Run your website URL through the tool
Online tools can scan your website in different ways, but the easiest and most common way is to place your website URL on a particular tool.
When you submit your URL, then the tool will start its operation.
Otherwise, some tools ask users to copy and paste their content within it. After successfully submitting, you have to wait for a few minutes.
In some cases, you will see a progress bar that actually shows the percentage of task completion. Some tools allow you to set up email notifications, and they also allow you to close the browser tab during operation.
But if you don't have permission to close the browser tab, you will lose all of your scans.
3. Discover different issues
After scanning the data, the tool will give you detailed information about your website errors and different issues.
Tools usually show the data one after another according to importance. I recommend you check them manually, as sometimes data are shown based on individual groups.
4. Look for recommended suggestions
Tools will not only give you the data but also provide you with different suggestions for improvement. Try to understand the suggestions; that is how you will get a proper view of your website issues.
Sometimes you may fail to get exact information from random data then. The suggestions can help you to guess the proper information.
5. Analyze errors and problems
It is time to analyze the website issues more deeply. I recommend you check it manually, as it will help you to understand more clearly.
Perform a combined check where necessary. I mean, a set of errors can create another individual problem. Tools sometimes fail to detect such issues, as finding out is a bit complex.
6. Take important notes on Google doc or Excel sheet
I think it can be the right decision to write down the positive findings along with negative ones from website audits. Though it is not mandatory to put down such issues, it can help you in the future.
But it is essential to keep negative records, as you have to fix them as soon as possible. You cannot fix all issues immediately, so my recommendation is to use Google Docs and Sheets.
Put down the error records, suggestions, and ways to fix it. Write down the comments where necessary; it will help you to perform tasks more perfectly. Take notes of the progress status; that's it.
What should I look for while auditing websites?
Website performance: Assess how quickly your website loads and its overall speed.
Website usability: Evaluate the user-friendliness of your website and how easy it is for users to navigate and interact with it.
Broken links: Identify and fix any links on your website that are broken, outdated, or not working.
Search engine optimization: Analyze and optimize your website's on-page and off-page SEO elements to improve its ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Technical issues: Identify and fix any technical problems on your website, including server errors, 404 pages, and other issues that may be negatively affecting its performance.
Page redirection: Check for proper page redirection, such as 301 redirects, to ensure that users are redirected to the appropriate page.
Content quality: Evaluate the quality and relevance of your website's content, including the text, images, and videos.
Conversion rate: Measure the effectiveness of your website in converting visitors into customers or subscribers.
Device optimization: Ensure that your website is optimized for all devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets, and mobile phones.
Website security: Assess the security of your website and take necessary measures to protect it from cyber threats and attacks.
Site structure and navigation: Evaluate the organization and structure of your website, including its menus, categories, and subcategories.
HTML tags and attributes: Check the HTML tags and attributes used on your website, including title tags, meta descriptions, alt tags, and header tags, to ensure that they are properly optimized.
Meta tags: Meta tags are HTML code snippets that provide information about a webpage to search engines and include the title, description, and keyword tags.
Advantages of a website audit
Proper optimization for search engines: A website audit helps to identify areas for improvement in search engine optimization, leading to better visibility and higher search rankings.
Identify issues and get recommendations: A website audit provides a comprehensive analysis of a website's strengths and weaknesses and recommendations to fix any issues identified.
Create better usability: A website audit helps to identify any usability issues and provides recommendations for creating a more user-friendly website.
Competitive analysis: A website audit helps to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of competitors' websites, providing insights into what they are doing well and areas for improvement.
Increase website security and performance: A website audit helps to identify any security vulnerabilities and performance issues, allowing website owners to take necessary steps to improve website security and speed.
Improve website accessibility: A website audit can help to identify any accessibility issues on a website, ensuring that all users, including those with disabilities, can easily access and navigate the site.
Enhance user experience: By identifying and addressing issues that affect user experience, such as slow load times, broken links, and confusing navigation, a website audit can help to create a more positive user experience.
Increase conversions: A website audit can help to identify opportunities to improve conversion rates, such as by optimizing calls to action, improving site speed, and creating more engaging content.
Save time and money: By identifying issues early on, a website audit can help to save time and money by preventing more costly and time-consuming problems from arising down the line.
Keep up with evolving web standards: A website audit can help to ensure that a website is up-to-date with the latest web standards and best practices, ensuring that it remains competitive and effective in today's online landscape.
In conclusion, a website audit is a vital process that can help to identify issues and provide recommendations for improving a website's overall health and performance.
By conducting a thorough audit, website owners and marketers can gain valuable insights into areas that need improvement, such as SEO, usability, security, and more.
Ultimately, a website audit can help to enhance user experience, increase conversions, and boost search engine rankings, leading to better visibility, more traffic, and increased revenue.
So, whether you're a small business owner or a digital marketer, a website audit is an essential tool for achieving success online.
Frequently asked questions
Q1. What is the purpose of a website audit?
A1. The purpose of a website audit is to evaluate the health and performance of a website, identify issues and opportunities for improvement, and provide recommendations for addressing those issues.
Q2. How often should I conduct a website audit?
A2. The frequency of website audits depends on various factors, including the size and complexity of the website, the rate of change in the industry, and the level of resources available.
Generally, it's recommended to conduct a website audit at least once a year.
Q3. What are the benefits of conducting a website audit?
A3. The benefits of conducting a website audit include identifying and addressing issues that affect search engine rankings, usability, security, and more, which can lead to better visibility, more traffic, and increased revenue.
It can also help to keep up with evolving web standards and improve the overall user experience.
Q4. What are the key areas to focus on during a website audit?
A4. The key areas to focus on during a website audit include website performance, usability, broken links, SEO, technical issues, page redirection, content quality, conversion rate, device optimization, website security, site structure and navigation, and HTML tags and attributes.
Q5. How do I measure website performance during a website audit?
A5. Website performance can be measured using various tools and metrics, such as page load speed, page size, number of requests, and time to first byte.
It's important to ensure that a website loads quickly and efficiently across all devices to provide the best user experience.
Q6. How do I identify and fix broken links during a website audit?
A6. Broken links can be identified using a website crawler tool and fixed by either updating the links or redirecting them to the appropriate pages.
It's important to regularly check for broken links as they can negatively impact SEO and user experience.
Q7. What is website security, and how can I improve it during a website audit?
A7. Website security refers to measures taken to protect a website from cyber threats and attacks.
During a website audit, it's important to ensure that the website has an SSL certificate, strong passwords, regular backups, and protection against malware and viruses.
Q8. What is SEO, and how can I improve it during a website audit?
A8. SEO stands for search engine optimization, which refers to the process of improving a website's visibility and ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs).
During a website audit, it's important to ensure that the website has properly optimized meta tags, quality content, relevant keywords, and high-quality backlinks.
Q9. How do I evaluate the usability of a website during a website audit?
A9. Usability can be evaluated by analyzing the website's navigation, layout, content, and user flow.
It's important to ensure that the website is user-friendly, easy to navigate, and provides a positive user experience.
Q10. What are the steps involved in conducting a website audit?
A10. The steps involved in conducting a website audit include the following:
Define the objectives and goals of the audit.
Analyze website performance and speed.
Evaluate website usability and user experience.
Check for broken links and technical issues.
Analyze SEO elements, including meta tags, keywords, and backlinks.
Review website security measures.
Evaluate site structure and navigation.
Check HTML tags and attributes.
Identify opportunities for improvement and provide recommendations.
Implement recommended changes and monitor results.