In the past week or so, I’ve gotten a lot of questions from business owners and executives who want to know one thing: How can they get the new year started on the right foot from an internet marketing perspective?
The answer I give sometimes surprises them. While many think they’re going to hear about the latest SEO trick or pay-per-click advertising gimmick, my number one recommendation is to begin the new year with a website audit. That’s a comprehensive look at your existing site that can point to problems and opportunities.
A thorough website audit is like having a mechanic take a good look at your car before along road trip, in that it can help you deal with headaches and hassles before they become something to worry about. What might we find if we look under the hood on your pages? Here are just some of the things we look for during the website audit process…
Design and Usability
Good web design isn’t just about the way your site looks. It also influences the feeling customers get for your pages, and the ease (or hassle) they have in finding the answers they need. An audit can help spot bottlenecks or usability issues that could be affecting your sales.
Search Engine Positioning
Whether your website is highly-visible on Google or not, the search engine optimization portion of your audit is critical. That’s because we can evaluate your search ranking across dozens of terms, and see why searchers are or aren’t finding your site already. With that info, you can make the adjustments needed to attract attention from Google.
Structural Website Issues
It’s not unusual for us to come across websites that have broken links, missing images, redundant content, and other mistakes that hurt a company’s credibility or search engine visibility. However, it can be hard to spot these kinds of details when you’re simply looking through your site one page at a time. During a website audit, we can pick out problem areas and fix them quickly.
While website layouts and navigation structures are important, it’s your content that brings you traffic from Google and convinces visitors to take the next step. There are a number of ways we can analyze your content, including recency, relevance, and keyword density. Each of these factors is important to figuring out what does and doesn’t work on your website.
Marketing and Optimization Strategy
In the end, the most important thing about your website is whether or not it’s helping you to reach your business goals. By examining your web analytics and marketing strategy, we can tell you whether your plans are up-to-date, and if you’re likely to meet your goals in 2017. That’s important if you want the highest possible ROI from your web presence.
A website audit helps you ensure that everything about your layout is working the way it’s supposed to. It also points you toward areas where you might be able to build on past success and open up new marketing opportunities.