Why your website may need a Seo Audit

What is Seo Audit and why you should perform that

SEO audit is running a check on the SEO health of website to ensure it does not contain errors that degrade the rank of the website on Search Engine Ranking Page. SEO is essential to help index and rank the website higher than its competitors, in every search engine like Google, Bing, Yahoo, Baidu, Yandex etc. If left unchecked there are errors or technical redundancy that creeps into a website as it grows which hampers flow organic traffic.

SEO Audit is often considered secondary by many enterprises because of how we fail to acknowledge its benefit. Without an SEO audit, a website that enjoys a domain authority status may lose its significance to its thoroughly audited rival website.
You need to audit and rethink your SEO strategy because there is a constant flux in Search Engine algorithm, webmaster guidelines change, backlinks become toxic and contents get outdated.
The goal of a seasonal SEO audit is to identify weak points in your website and chalk out an actionable blueprint to transform the website, which if stringently followed helps boost the site’s SEO campaign.

SEO Audit

Is SEO Audit time-consuming?

Well, depending on the size of website and number of pages that are indexed an SEO audit may take time. This question can be answered metaphorically by considering SEO audit as a marathon not a sprint race.
Likewise, if the website has several technical faults, it may need an overhaul which can translate into several months before we can witness any results. However, if there are only cosmetic errors like structural data errors, mobile optimization requirements etc, these can be fixed within a couple of weeks.

SEO Audit

How to get started with an SEO audit?

SEO audit contains an exhaustive checklist that is extensive and requires scrutiny at many different levels and in many sectors of the digital marketing.

Hence, it is advisable to conduct an audit by an expert, a consultant who is well versed with each and every technical nuances of SEO. It is commonly observed that an audit is comprised of majorly four types of Audit.

Four important types of SEO Audit are

1) Technical Audit – making sure your site is well coded and runs fast
2) On-site Audit – full review and analysis of all pages for proper keyword use in all pertinent areas (H1-H6, title tags, content etc.)
3) Off-site Audit – analysis of back links and anchor text and authority and trust
4) Social Audit – review current mentions and visibility

To be precise Onsite SEO is more controllable and includes elements like Titles and Description, URL Structure, Text formatting, Content, Internal Link, Images, Banners, Ads, Page Speed, website structure etc.
Whereas Offsite SEO includes backlink profiling and competitor analysis. Ideally, it is convenient to start with onsite SEO as it directly affects the contents, appearance, load time etc which impacts user experience.

SEO Audit

Common SEO errors and how to solve them 

Content Issues – Includes keywords, url structure, title tags, meta description tags, meta keywords etc.
How to solve it?
Yoast SEO plugin is a tool that can be installed on WordPress assigns an identification color for each category of content posted on the website. If it strongly qualifies SEO content algorithm, Yoast assigns green, yellow for an ordinary SEO conformity and Red, if the content fails in most, if not all algorithm. It does have a free version which provides a basic understanding and a premium version which is paid and provides advanced level solutions.

Recommendation: Do not rely your entire SEO strategy and control on Yoast Seo. It is like having a mixer preparing you a meal. For sure you are going to have a decent one, but to get a tasteful meal you need a real chef who has a much more extended knowledge about the tools.

Indexing error – Errors relating to indexing is fatal to a site which includes page inclusions & page exclusion, redirects, duplicate content, broken links etc. To gain an insight on what these issues mean, you can find a description of the same here.

Which tools are the most effective?

One of the most effective tool for SEO audit is, hands down, Google Web-master tool. In order to diagnose the symptoms of an unhealthy site Google Analytics serves as an effective measure.
An analysis of the metrics laid out by Analytics can help trace the problems with the website such as bounce rate, plunge in traffic and from which source, page-load speed, mobile friendliness etc. Google Analytics is all the more essential when it is the first time that your site is audited for its SEO health. To start with, tools created by Google is free to use, do not have any usage restriction and are reliable to use.

Another amazing audit tool is Screaming frog, which conducts a comprehensive check to detect errors and technical defects in a website using a ‘page by page’ analysis.
Screaming frog has a paid and premium version, it is recommended that you opt for the premium version for the best results. Other free tools that you could try for an SEO audit are SEOPTIMER, ZADROWEB, SEO SITE CHECK UP etc.

Which one is the best? It is depending on the business and type of website. For a website that does an e-commerce business and a website that provides information, will have the differing combination of tool to complete its audit.

SEO Audit

Remember: Data should be considered from multiple sources!

When a site is audited there are various pivotal points of the website that are to be considered to provide a holistic overview. To stay competitive, it is important that every aspect of your site is covered in an audit; there is no single tool that microscopically detects every defect, hence a combination of software has to be utilised.

With all the free software available online, you do get a fairly accurate picture of the SEO health of your website. An auditor can analyse the data and draw a plan to target the areas of SEO that is doing the most harm for your website.

 Your starting point are your data

Additionally, when equipped with so much data, recommendation and plans must be properly analysed. They shall include strategies to better Keyword usage, Penalty removal, content recommendations, Link building etc.
By implementing these strategies, a website can witness significant improvement in its ranking, load time and traffic inflow.
However this requires frequent monitoring and analysis as there multiple changes taking place in the world of SEO. At the initial steps pertaining to the repair of your website, not only will the user experience be enhanced but also Google will respect it and boost its ranking.

SEO Audit

Should you audit your website seasonally?

An SEO audit needs to be done periodically, i.e Monthly, Quarterly or Biannually depending on many factors, such as growth rate of your traffic and of your sector.
There are several reasons to consider timely, scheduled and frequent audit because of constant changes in Search Engine Algorithm, revisions in Google Webmaster guideline, the expiry of content or content redundancy and aged or toxic backlinks.
Due to ever changing and dynamic SEO, the need to keep your site free from errors, in better conformity to algorithm becomes a necessity than a luxury.

Therefore it is best to keep your website updated and let it evolve with frequent audit and experience a higher traffic compared to your competitor.

A beginner guide to Google tag manager

Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager: The revolutionary new tool by Google that helps with SEO

Before we dive into the oft-riveting question that is ‘How does Google tag work?’, let us try to understand know the definition and significance of a tag. A tag is essentially a snippet of code that helps you analyse web traffic, overlook your marketing campaign and study about user behavior.

Imagine possessing the ownership of a console that helps your steer your business. Your website performance can be tracked and evaluated using a single tab. Google tag manager (GTM) seamlessly help any user like a website owner, entrepreneur or individual bloggers to monitor every metric associated with their website.

It is one stop shop to manage traffic, clicks, ad revenue or PPC results of your website without having to run and operate individual tool. GTM is easy to install, simple to operate and effective in its result. It creates a platform for a non-technical person to perform operations that a developer is trained to execute. It is a SEO tool that interweaves every website performance monitor into a unified system for better tag management.

Why is Google Tag Manager a Game-changer?

It is extremely frustrating and a time-killer when your website is performing lower than its potential. A website, especially a blog primarily exists to provide value to its reader seamlessly. Before the introduction of Google tag manager, a site owner would have to hard code a script from a snippet into the HTML source file.

It eliminates the need to code, and aids in applying analytics, advertising, monitor user behaviour etc by only copy pasting tracking ids. GTM deploys tags on website asynchronously, which means a tag that is slow in its deployment does not affect or does not repress other tags from being deployed.

It simplifies this otherwise crucial yet complicated process into a task that can be single handedly managed by a non-technical business owner. In fact, GTM puts you in the position of a front runner of your website, which grants you massive control and personalization over the site proving to be a game changer for its user. A user of GTM can optimise the use of marketing technologies deployed on a website, reduces time and financial expenditure. It puts them at an advantage over a competitor that is not a GTM user.

What are Tags, Triggers and Variable?

Google tag manager is extremely important for updating code of on your website. GTM supports first and third party tags, the list of the tags is continually expanding, such as Google Analytics, Ad words, Eyereturn, Tribal fusion, Adroll, Floodlight etc. Essentially a GTM consist of two significant bits namely Tags, Variables and Triggers. Understanding these two terms can answer the question ‘How Google tag manager works?’

Tags – It is a snippet of code that is incorporated on a web page. Tag is like a command or direction given by a user to GTM. For example “Send information of a potential buyer on your website.”

Trigger – It defines when and where the tag has to be executed. Example “When a buyer adds a product to their cart”

Variables – Variable stores value that tags and triggers can execute. Essentially a variable is a function which is represented using a syntax command like {{Variable Name}}. You can find more about Variable here.

Metrics define the performance of a website, without this information, a business is operating on a blinder. With growing use of a variety of first and third-party web tags, GTM has gained paramount importance. In addition Google, through its tools it is pushing the integration of GTM, and therefore it has become a mandate and is no longer an add-on or an option.

What are the opportunities available to an SEO expert?

SEO experts have already embraced GTM, a tool that is rapidly evolving with changing business. GTM chops and disintegrates a monumental task, thereby making the process of operation digestible.

A business or blog to be effective in marketing must be able to trace the results of the efforts invested. GTM simplifies the process by incorporating multiple marketing tools into a single console, thereby providing a direct comparison between different marketing tags.

By doing this, an SEO expert has access to key metrics in a consolidated setup. Click rates from website user can be compared to the number of page views while using the same tools with differing triggers. Key information like these, provide necessary insight to take advanced steps in Digital marketing and helps us position the brand more suitably.

A SEO expert can learn more accurate user behaviour by using GTM. Google forces GTM user’s i.e SEO experts to paste GTM snippet on the header of page. It wants your site to load up precious information on user’s behaviour before it even loads up the key content on the website.

Google made the installation of GTM easy because with the ever-changing social media landscape, marketing conditions and search engine algorithm, a business owner has to immediately respond to such changes. Google understands that the IT team of your company is busy working on product catalogues update.

If you are a business owner and you wish to add a squeeze or landing page tag on your website for only two days. Time becomes crucial at the launch of a product, hence GTM allows you add and publish the tag in a few minutes. Once the product launch is complete, you can disable the tag. The beauty of GTM lies in its simplicity and relative ease at deploying tags which otherwise would have been a monumental task.

Two most important feature of GTM

  1. GTM completely removes the need to alter, edit or modify your website source file. GTM contains container which stores tag and deploy them as and when instructed by the website owner.
  2. Moreover, GTM allows its user to debug and preview each tag and how they respond. You do not have to test a defunct code by experimenting on your website, why should you lose essential data.

Loss of information is loss of business, right? Google understand this pain area, and included a debug and preview function that allows you to test the shallow waters become you take the dive. By doing this, you essentially can proof your website from unintended consequences and view the impact before it becomes live.

Can this tool be solely used for SEO purpose?

GTM offers unparalleled flexibility for managing and tracking the performance of a website. Web users who land on a webpage, may not completely read the entire content. GTM helps in tracking the actual percentage of page read say 25%, 50%, 75% or 100%. It helps in microscopically analysing user-behaviour.

By setting up Google Tag Manager, the code of website remains untouched and snippets of code from multiple tags can be edited and modified without tampering the source file of the website. With the source code file retaining its base DNA, the website loads faster.

What are other tools I can use together with GTM?

With GTM a digital marketer can throw all the tags in GTM container. For instance, a more refined form of analytics is possible using GTM universal analytics tag. On Google Tag Manager’s official website, specific micro events can be tracked on Google Analytics such as click on links, any kind of click on a page or when a form is submitted.

GTM evaluates the performance of marketing effort by calculating –

  • Analytics – Tracking page views, Impact of call to action through Tag template such as Universal analytic, Unified digital management etc.
  • Search – GTM can help in monitoring how effective is an ad click, what is the final behavior of customer such as website purchase, phone calls, app downloads, newsletter sign up and more through Adword conversion tracking.
  • Remarketing – For a business or website owner to magnify their marketing efforts through PPC, GTM offers a wide variety of Remarketing templates such as Adroll SmartPixel, Adword Remarketing etc.
  • Display track advertising – With tag templates such as Doubleclick Floodlight counter, Double click Floodlight Sales and Turn conversion tracking, a marketer gets to know number of times a user have visited a particular page after seeing or clicking their ads.

Google tag manager shortcomings

GTM is an excellent tool, however, it has its share of shortcomings!

An SEO expert must have Google Tag Manager to independently control and manage the promotion and marketing of a website. However, being overtly reliant on a single tool can cause an imbalance in the budgeting and marketing effort. Therefore, it is prudent if you club your marketing strategy through various other tools including Google Tag Manager.

Google Tag Manager is fraught with a few shortcomings in its approach. GTM expects its user to have technical knowledge of at least above a basic level. When you seek help from GTM guide, it leads to a developer guide which may sound alien to most marketers.

GTM acts an excellent starter application for tag management, however falls short for medium or large businesses. It is free to use tool and caters perfectly for small businesses or blog that are individually managed. With big businesses comes larger complexities and because GTM lacks dedicated support, and it may not be the best choice.

The real question is, how quickly can I learn and master Google Tag Manager?

As an SEO professional, learning GTM should consume lot of time. If you are building the basics then, you need to invest a lot of time by undertaking online courses or skimming knowledge through blog or videos.

This makes the learning curve steep for digital marketers who do not possess some background in coding. When using a GTM, it is also important to understand how tags fire and records data. For example , hen using an Analytic tag, you may experience that the tags are firing but no data is being recorded in Analytics.

Due to lack of dedicated support, it may be impossible to find out that the requisite variable may not have entered in Analytic tag. The most effective solution to his would be creating a custom variable that holds the Analytic property ID. There are specifics that needs to be learnt by trial and error, and through extensive research of highly personalized problems that arise out of the use of GTM.

So, let us know what you think about the tool. You can find more info on how to install here. We really appreciate it. Do you think was it hard to learn? Did it save time to you as well? Let us know in the comments below.