If you deal with SEO, one of the first steps to take when optimizing a site or a blog is the analysis of the website . How to do an SEO analysis? What are the factors to consider?
In this article I will try to give you an outline and guidelines that can be useful to start your SEO business by knowing the status of the site on which you will have to go to operate.
The first aspect that you will have to analyze is the structure of the site (or architecture): it is known that the structure of a site affects its visibility, and this is mainly defined by the links
A tool like SEOZoom can be very useful for analyzing the structure of a website: by creating your project you can in fact insert the various sections of the site and understand how these are positioned on search engines and how to optimize them.
The internal links on your website can give more or less importance to certain pages, sections and categories, and therefore should be structured in an intelligent way.
Another incredibly effective tool to analyze the structure of a website is definitely Screaming Frog .
Another aspect to be evaluated is the content on the website. How many articles have already been published? How are they organized? How long and complete are they?
They are well structured (TAG H2, H3) and organized into categories and tags , it also checks for duplicate content that can cannibalize each other.
Google search console can also help you find out if there are similar or duplicate titles and descriptions that you need to correct and delete.
Trying to understand if a correct keyword research has been carried out and if the contents created reflect the purpose of the pages on the site is of fundamental importance to evaluate the effectiveness of the contents already published and if it is worth reviewing the contents already present or deleting them for create new ones.
HTTP status codes and HTTPS protocol
Another element to be analyzed is the presence or absence of the HTTPS protocol and any redirects.
Screaming Frog can help you quickly discover the various status codes (200, 301, 404), …
Status codes are server responses and are indicated by a 3-digit integer.
The first digit of the status code defines the type of response (or response class) and allow you to understand the health status of a website, which is why they are indispensable when carrying out an SEO Audit .
The most important status codes are:
- 2xx – Action received, understood and accepted by the search engine (ALL GOOD)
- 3xx – Redirection : the resource is no longer available at the address indicated and a new action must be taken to complete the request
- 4xx – Client ERROR : there is an incorrect syntax or the page is no longer available
- 5xx – SERVER ERROR: The server cannot fulfill the request or encountered an unexpected condition.
Simulating website crawling and using tools like SEO Spider can help you see how your site is viewed by search engines .
If there is Google analytics installed we can get a lot of information: not only the number of unique visitors and the time spent on individual pages or on the site, but also the traffic sources, the main pages, the loading speed of the site, the navigation path of users and the behavior within our website.
For ecommerce, if they are set, we can also evaluate the conversion goals and many other parameters thanks for example to my conversion attribution models.
Check the htaccess file and the website indexing status – are there any noindex instructions ? What is the status of indexing on Search Console?
Has an Xml Sitemap been created? Was it submitted to Google? Are there any scan errors?
Indexing is not positioning: in fact, indexing means the ability of search engines to analyze and scan a website to insert it into the search engine results.
Positioning, on the other hand, is that set of techniques that aim to improve the visibility of a website within search engines by means of techniques that improve the position within the search results pages (SERP).
Checking if a site is indexed and how many pages are indexed is very simple: just write on google site: sitename.extension (eg site: monetizing.com) to see what the results will be indexed by Google.
When you analyze a website check that the robots.txt has no rules that block access to the site for search engines.
Check the integration of structured data within the website: you can use the Structure data testing tool or learn more by reading the schema.org guidelines .
Structured data are basically supplementary information that can be sent to search engines to improve understanding of content and obtain more detailed results (for example with cooking times, average customer ratings, …).
This meta information, inserted within the pages of a website and organized according to a scheme and a set of predefined rules, help search engines to catalog the contents.
The main structural rules are microdata, microfodrmata, pdf and json-ld.
Thanks to structured data, it is possible to access rich snippets , i.e. detailed results that can affect the ranking and therefore the positioning of a website, improving the user experience within search engines.
How fast is the site? What are its performances? You can use various tools to check the speed of the site: Pingdom Tools, GTMetrix, Google Pagespeed .
Improving the speed of the site is essential: Pagespeed Insight is the free tool provided by Google that allows you to measure the speed of a web page or a site and to understand which are the resources that take the most time to load.
Link Building and Popularity
Analyzing the incoming and outgoing links of a site, the citations, mentions and co-citations will help you understand how the site is viewed by the web and what type of links it receives: are there malicious links? spam links or anchors too forced?
Tools like Majestic can really solve Negative SEO problems .
If you are interested in this topic I suggest you also read the article ” FREE SEO GUIDE “, or the book “SEO For WordPress Basic Guide”:
Before starting a link building strategy, it is good to proceed with a link audit that helps us define objectives, understand how competitors behave and structure an effective campaign to avoid Google penalties .
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Good work and good positioning on search engines,