When starting SEO for an existing website or starting to launch a new one, it is important to perform a comprehensive SEO audit and see what problems need addressing and what work needs to be done. Getting an SEO provider that only starts working after a detailed audit can be good for the site you are going to market yourself through.
There are a few vital steps to making your SEO audit more effective. Before starting, it is important to understand the purpose of the audit, and the issues it is intended to check for. Some of the reasons why you want the audit performed include:
After that, you need to decide on the things the audit will inspect, such as sub-domains, mobile versions, https and schema. You will also want to look at any technical redesigns that have been done to date, as well as CMS migrations and performance.
The Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools History are important as well. After having gathered these properties and other data, make a section-wise tour of the site, looking at:
If the redesign or CMS migration is planned, try to figure out the launch timeline. This is usually tentative, so stay updated. Check the wireframes and site architecture information from designers and developers to assess pre-launch. The best tools to use for an SEO audit, which crawl your site and check for errors, include:
Xenu: A free tool that runs only on PC. Stick to smaller sites; because the bigger ones will almost surely give you trouble.
Screaming Frog: An affordable tool that works on Mac and PC and gives your reports on a range of SEO metrics, including heading tags and duplicate title tags.
Deep Crawl: Another inexpensive tool that runs in the cloud and does not depend on the OS. It can also track SEO factors like broken links, http status headers, missing XML sitemap, blocked URLs, thin content and facsimile content.
For checking information architecture, SEOquake is about the best option you can choose, for all indexed domains. Where topic hierarchy is concerned, DYNO mapper and PowerMapper are strong utilities to use.