Website Audit 101
Once you submit your website for our free website audit you will receive a PDF report by email which analyzes your site against over 60 different metrics. Some are pretty obvious, some are a bit more obscure, and a few are downright confusing.
In order to make things easier we’ve compiled a list of each analysis performed and explained both what it means and what you can do to help improve your results. If you still have questions don’t hesitate to contact us, we’re here to help!
Page load speed
Google likes fast websites, and so do users. If your site takes a long time to load on a computer, imagine how slow it will be on a mobile device? The speed has to do with the construction of the website as well as the web hosting. We ensure that both are optimized for the highest quality speed.
Using massive images, instead of scaling them down the the proper size, has a huge impact on the speed of a website. There are other things that can seriously affect page size, like loading unnecessary CSS files, JS scripts or web fonts.
Number of file requests
The more file requests, the longer a page takes to load. A file request includes anything that needs to be loaded when the page is viewed, this includes things such as HTML code, images, JS files, CSS files and web fonts. We limit the number of file requests, combining things where practical, or eliminating unnecessary items.
Is URL SEO friendly?
Your domain name should contain real words (real words that people can search for), not gibberish, extra punctuation or made up words. Really long domain names are a bad idea too – www.apple.com is MUCH better than www.applecomputersandphonesandtablets.com. If someone will have a hard time searching for your domain name, it’s a bad domain name.
Keyword in URL?
Having your keyword in the URL is usually pretty difficult, if you manage to pull it off, good job!
Underscore in URL?
Sometimes people use a underscore in a domain name because the preferred version is already taken, something like www.quik_silver.com. This is usually a VERY bad idea for usability and opens you up to copyright infringement complaints. If you can’t get the domain name you want, keep searching for a different one, don’t just throw in an underscore and call it a day.
Google doesn’t like underscores either and if Google doesn’t like them you shouldn’t use them. According to Google hyphens are OK though, just don’t use too many because your URL starts to look ‘spammy’.
Keyword in title tag
Your most important keyword should be in your title tag, and should appear exactly as it’s typed.
Title tag length
Title tags should be short, or they will be cut off in search results. 55 characters or less is pretty much the standard.
Description tag should have 155 characters or less
Google only shows the first 155 characters – everything else will be cut off. Better to keep it short and readable than long and missing half the sentence.
Description tag includes exact keyword
In search engine results, Google bolds keywords that match a users search, in the description tag. This will improve your CTR, thus improving your SEO.
All images have alt tags
Since search engines can’t see images like a humans can, they look for alt tags (alternative text) to help them better understand the image, and the content on the page.
Exact keyword found in an alt tag
By adding your exact target keyword to an alt tag high up on the page, you’re sending a signal to search engines that your content is about that target keyword.
Exact keyword in an image file name
Search engines read image file names to help them better understand your content. So, use variations of your target keyword instead of generic file names.
No underscores found in image file names
We never recommend using underscores to break up words in image file names. The reason is that Google says their algorithym was written to understand hyphens, not underscores.
Found heading tags: H1, H2 and H3
Search engines read your heading tags to help them better understand the overall subject and content on this page.
Exact keyword found in H1, H2 or H3 tag
The target keyword should be in the H1, H2, or H3 tag. Preferably, it should be included it in the beginning of the H1 tag.
There are no duplicate heading tags
The same heading tags should not repeat over and over. There should only be one h1 tag, one h2 tag, and one h3 tag.
You should have 2,000+ words on this page
Multiple studies have shown that having 2,000 words on a specific web page will dramatically improve it’s optimization and rankings.
Only use exact keyword 2-4 times
The target keyword should only be used between 2 and 4 times in the copy of this web page. Studies have shown this to be most effective, no matter the length of your content. Keyword density is not a factor.
Exact keyword is bolded, italicized or underlined
Visually emphasizing the keyword on this page by bolding, italicizing, or underlining it, helps people and search engines better understand the content of this page.
Exact keyword found in the first 100 words
The target keyword should be in the first 100 words of this page. This will send a signal to search engines that your content is about the target keyword.
Exact keyword found in anchor text
Despite what your natural instinct tells you, you should link to more authoritative pages, on different websites using the target keyword.
Link this page to a sitemap.html
A HTML sitemap helps people find all of the awesome content on a site, essentially growing the authority of a domain; and the authority of a domain, directly impacts it’s web pages.
HTML is W3C validated
A W3C valid page meets the industry standard requirements for clean source code. This is a great way to make sure search engines can easily crawl, understand, and properly index a page.
No Flash found
Search engines and some browsers can’t read, crawl, understand or even display Flash. It’s no longer 2005, there’s absolutely no good reason to use flash for anything.
Remove inline CSS
CSS is great to use, but not in the source code of a web page. Keep all of your CSS in a separate file or folder, otherwise you will make it more difficult for search engines to crawl and understand content of a page.
Text to HTML ratio is too low (<25%)
At least 25% of this web page’s code should be actual text that a search engines can understand, not HTML.
Found schema markup
Search engines look for schema markup to help them better display web pages to users in the search results.
Link to a sitemap.xml
A sitemap.xml helps search engines find all the other awesome content on a domain, and the awesomeness of a domain impacts the optimization and authority of it’s web page.
Add a tweet button
The amount tweets a web page gets is a signal of how awesome and informative the page’s content is. A tweet button let’s your visitors easily share this page.
Add a Facebook share or like button
A Facebook “Like” or “Share” button lets your visitors easily share this incredible content with their followers; and more shares lets search engines know that you must have awesome content.
Add a Google+ button
Having a Google+ button on this page lets people share this awesome content with all of their followers. More shares usually results in more links. Note that the amount of Google+ shares does not impact a web page’s raking in Google. However, it will help get links and more shares on other social media channels, which can effect rankings.
We found a link to a blog
The authority of this page is heavily influenced by how much this site grows with awesome content; and a blog is an easy way to grow your site with awesome and informative content.
Add a mobile sitemap
Having a mobile sitemap tells search engines which pages are mobile friendly, and search engines tend to rank mobile friendly pages higher in mobile browsers.
Add an Apple icon
Adding an apple icon and tell search engines that you care about how people view your content on mobile phones. This will make a site more SEO friendly in mobile search results.
We found a viewport meta tag
A viewport meta tag will send a signal to search engines that this web page can be easily viewed in mobile browsers, resulting in higher mobile search results.
Page Link Analysis
Found X links from other sites
This is the total number of links to a web page, from other web pages and websites.
Found X links from unique domains
This is the total number of unique domains (different websites) that link to a web page. The more unique domains that link to a page the better with regard to SEO.
This page has X outbound links
This is the number of outbound links from a web page to different websites.
This page has X outbound follow links
This is the number of times a web page allows a search engine to follow a link from the audit web page to a different website. This should be kept to a minimal.
MozTrust Page Score
This score measures how trustworthy the links are to this page. (MozTrust does not effect your MSA score)
MozRank Page Score
This score measures how important this page is by looking at the number and quality of other web pages linking to it. (MozRank does not effect your MSA score)
Moz Page Authority
Page Authority is a predication by Moz on how well a web page will perform in search engines, on a scale of 1-100. (Page Authority does not affect your MSA Score)
Root Domain Link Analysis
Found X links from other sites
This is the total number of web pages, on different websites, that link to the domain (home page) of the audited web page, from different websites.
Found X links from unique domains
This is the total number of different unique websites, that link to the domain (home page) of the audited web page, from different websites. This looks for a link on dmoz.org to the audited web page’s website.
MozTrust Domain Score
This score measures how trustworthy the links are to your domain (home page). (MozTrust does not effect your MSA score)
MozRank Domain Score
Moz Domain Authority
This score estimates how well your entire website should perform in search engines, on a scale of 1-100 (Domain Authority does not effect your MSA score).
Number of pages indexed by Google
The size of a website directly impacts the authority and optimization of a web page on that site. So, adding more pages to a site, with quality content, will help increase a page’s sarch engine rankings.
In the eyes of major search engines, an older domain has more authority than a newer domain. This impacts the optimization of the audited web page.
A domain that expires in less than a year may look very suspicious to a search engine. SEO- friendly domains should not expire for at least 5 years. This impacts the optimization of the audited web page.
Preferred domain set
Search engines sometimes mistakenly think www.domain.com and domain.com are two different websites. Setting a preferred domain tells search engines that you either prefer to have “www” at the beginning of your domain or not. Picking one and redirecting the others help avoid duplicate content concerns from search engines.
Cannonicalize your IP address
A site’s IP address should be redirected to the preferred domain name. Otherwise, Google may think the IP address and URL are two different websites with the same exact content.
Robots.txt file found
A robots.txt file tells search engines how to crawl your site and which pages to index. More importantly, it tells search engines which pages not to index.
A favicon is a 16px by 16px icon associated with your URL. It should be named favicon.ico and located this domain’s root folder on the server. You can see a site’s favicon next to the URL and title tag in most browsers. Having a favicon tells search engines how serious you are about your website, and therefore the content on your website.