An SEO analysis can be an incredibly powerful tool for marketing and growing your business. If done right, it can uncover traffic-driving keywords, shed light on your competitors, expose technical site issues, identify quality backlinks, and much more.
However, the process of doing your own SEO analysis is daunting, and many marketers have no idea where to begin.
So, here we’ll show you how to navigate the process of analyzing your own SEO performance. We’ll also take a look at some best practices and common mistakes, so you can improve your SEO and start driving your business forward.
Here are 3 Common SEO Errors to Check For During SEO Analysis
One of the main benefits of SEO analysis is that it shines a light on some of the things you’re currently doing wrong. Here are a few of the most common errors that show up during an SEO audit.
There are a lot of things that can go wrong on your website and negatively impact SEO performance. The most common on-site SEO issue is poor or inconsistent optimization when it comes to title tags and meta descriptions.
Title tags are important because they show users and search engines what your page will be about, letting Google know what keywords you want your page to rank for. It’s important to use relevant keywords in your title, but don’t stuff it full of keywords — readability and understandability for your readers must remain a priority.
Meta descriptions are important because they can boost organic click-through rates. You’re essentially giving your reader an elevator pitch for why they should click your search result and view your site over all the others. Make sure to use relevant keywords and a compelling call-to-action.
A lot of SEO work takes place away from your website. Broken backlinks to other pages are a common problem, along with failing to have enough diversity in your backlink anchor text profile.
If you have broken backlinks (backlinks that direct to a 404 page), you’re missing out on the main advantage of backlinks which is to raise your SEO profile by harnessing the authority of third-party sites.
Backlink anchor text helps to add relevance between your site and keywords. Ideally, your anchor text should be rich in keywords that relate to your products and services. This way, you’ll find it easier to rank for non-branded terms. If you fill your backlink anchor text profile with only branded terms, you’ll be missing out on opportunities to include more relevant keywords.
One of the most common technical issues in SEO is slow mobile site speed. It’s important to ensure your site loads effectively on mobile phones since a huge chunk of your traffic will likely be coming from these devices. In fact, more than half of all web traffic now comes from mobile devices.
Considering mobile-first indexing, you should ensure that your site loads properly on mobile. You should also work to optimize load times, minimize resources, and use Search Console to improve your core web vitals, as this will help improve your overall loading speed and create a much better experience for users.
Failing to focus on these elements of SEO will mean your site visitors have an unpleasant experience and leave your website long before making any purchasing decision.
The Most Important Metrics to Consider
Anyone who has dabbled in SEO will know there is a wide range of digital marketing metrics to consider, but they aren’t all created equal.
With SEO, your goal is to increase the discoverability of your site among an audience that knows what they want (in terms of a product or service) but doesn’t know who they want it from. For this reason, the metrics you should be paying attention to most are organic traffic and unbranded keyword rankings.
Let’s look at these in a little more detail.
Organic traffic is a measure of how many people are traveling to your site. Good SEO helps increase the amount of high-intent traffic (traffic that intends to convert) to your site through improved keyword rankings.
Improving organic traffic means more potential customers and — assuming the rest of your marketing is dialed in — more money.
Unbranded Keyword Rankings
Unbranded keyword rankings are search terms that don’t contain your business name. If you can rank higher and more often for unbranded keywords, this will improve the visibility of your site within search results.
This way, you’ll appear in the results of people who have never heard of your company before, increasing your reach and putting you on the radar of many new prospects.
Tools to Use for SEO Analysis
The good news for marketers is that there are a plethora of fantastic tools out there for streamlining the SEO analysis process and ensuring you get the best results possible. These tools can help with all the different elements of SEO, and each has its own strengths. Let’s take a look at some of the best SEO analysis tools.
Ahrefs is built for discovering off-site opportunities to improve your SEO. You can access thorough reports of your website’s backlink profile, anchor text, broken backlinks, and analyze your competitors’ backlinks. There are also some on-site reporting features, like the ability to view and analyze your top-performing pages.
The magic of BrightEdge lies in keyword insights and competitor analysis. This tool allows you to identify every keyword you are ranking for in the first ten pages of Google’s results. You can also access competitor insights to better understand what other websites in your niche are doing and how you stack up.
One particularly neat feature is the Universal Results report which highlights the types of rich snippets you’ve ranked for over the past year.
SEMrush comes packed with features like the ability to view keyword and traffic trends and compare branded and unbranded traffic estimates. The interlinking analysis tool tells you how many low, medium, and high-authority pages you are linking between internally on your site — an awesome way to make quick and high-impact adjustments to your internal linking strategy.
Google’s Search Console platform is invaluable for SEO — providing a complete breakdown of how your site has performed in Google’s results and which keywords and pages get the most impressions and clicks.
On top of that, Search Console shows the click-through rate for keywords and pages as well as an average ranking position. You can view your site as a whole, by category pages, or by individual pages.
This deep dive into the various aspects of your SEO performance helps you quickly identify what’s going well and what needs to improve, as well as giving a solid overall picture of your site’s SEO health.
Google Analytics allows you to view information like acquisition metrics, user behavior metrics, e-commerce, lead generation, and much more.
This is incredibly useful because it allows you to better understand your audience — their interests, behavior, the demographics they belong to, and all kinds of other information. This helps you create content that really resonates with your most valuable audience members and solves their specific problems.
The Wayback Machine
The Wayback Machine allows you to see what your site looked like at a specific point in the past. So if, for example, you notice a spike in conversions on a specific date in the past, you can use the Wayback Machine to see exactly what your site looked like on that day and pinpoint why your conversions spiked the way they did.
Start Performing Better SEO Analysis Today
Quality SEO analysis is essential if you want to optimize your site for search engines, rank high in your audience’s search results, drive traffic, and grow your business. It may seem daunting, but the fundamentals aren’t too tricky and you can gain many useful insights without too much work.
If you want to gain deeper insights into your SEO and conduct a more thorough analysis, it’s best to work with the pros. At Booyah, our team of SEO experts can help you do just that.