What is Technical SEO?
Why Should I Do Technical SEO Audits?
A website is like a machine, and like all machines needs to be maintained and well-oiled for it to perform to optimum levels. You should be performing technical SEO audits on a fairly regular basis. We recommend quarterly intervals, especially for new websites.
Technical SEO audits assess the entire infrastructure of your website and if performed thoroughly, will pick up problem areas both on-site and off-site. If you want to get down to work and perform your own technical SEO audit on your site, take a look at our Technical SEO Audit Checklist, a comprehensive guide sure to help you get to grips with your site’s SEO.
In the meantime, we’re going to explain why you need to perform technical SEO audits. If your website is not properly optimised, you’re probably losing significant amounts of search engine traffic.
Change to search engine algorithms
Search engines are constantly tweaking their algorithms to improve the performance of their search engines. Their goal is to learn how to predict what information end-users are searching for so they can produce the best results that match search intent.
As you can imagine with the large volume of searches that are performed on a daily basis (Google handles 3.5 billion searches a day), perfecting an algorithm is an ongoing process.
Search engines are typically secretive about how their algorithms work and we don’t know how often they are updated. Google usually announce two or three major updates to their core algorithm each year, but the company also once said it is updated 500 times a year – so more than once a day.
We certainly know that websites can be effected at any time, especially now that Penguin and Panda has been added to Google’s core algorithm. And this is arguably the principle reason why you need to perform technical SEO audits on a regular basis. The rules for ranking mean that SEO is constantly changing.
Webmaster guidelines are updated
Search engines like Google and Bing are also constantly changing their guidelines and webmasters that are not compliant with the latest rules will suffer a fall in search engine rankings. When you carry out technical SEO audits consult the guidelines for updates.
As your website matures, content will become outdated, especially the earlier pieces. Given search engines rank individual webpages rather than entire websites, it is worth your while to run SEO audits to identify pages that are under-performing and address the content. Older page content probably requires a refresh and re-promoting.
Technical SEO audits will also pick up on broken links in your content, either internally if you have moved pages to another url, and in particularly external links that direct to pages that are no longer available.
You may also want to update metadata such as title tags and meta descriptions so that they work better with algorithm updates. For example, a spread of keywords on any one page is not necessary now as semantics enable search engines to understand the context of page content without the need for keywords.
A better strategy now is to focus the content around one keyword that search engines can index and match against search intent. Therefore, you probably want to assess content for targeted keywords and update your H2 tags.
Get Rid of Spammy links
No matter how hard search engines try, it is impossible to prevent black hat marketers leaving spammy web links on your website. It is therefore the responsibility of website owners to clean up low quality links. And the only way to do that is by conducting a technical SEO audit to identify where the links are.
Strengthen the core attributes of your SEO
A thorough site audit strengthens the core of your SEO efforts whilst also tidying up the loose threads round the edges. In order to rank well in search engines your website needs to perform well whenever end-users visit.
A thorough SEO audit should include test page load speeds, page errors, browser and resolution compatibility and HTML validation – particularly now the majority of searches are performed on mobile devices and Google has launched AMP codes.
If you don’t perform SEO audits on your website, it will not perform as well as you need it to. Poor SEO ultimately has a negative impact on your search engine standings and conversions. To sum up, you need to perform technical SEO audits so your online business does not suffer.