An SEO site audit is one of the most important tools in identifying your website’s current SEO standing and overall rankings potential. In short, SEO site audits offer insights on how to improve your law firm's website to rank high in search engine results.
In most cases, an SEO audit looks at the technical infrastructure of a website, the on-page and the off-page elements that affects a website’s usability, overall search engine visibility, and conversion rate optimization (CRO).
Put simply, SEO site audit gives you a comprehensive picture of the effectiveness of your website and the marketing strategies you have out in place.
It's also worth mentioning that SEO site audits should be conducted regularly, at least every year. There are many reasons why your law firm or legal practice should perform regular SEO audits, or invest in an SEO site audit from a professional SEO company.
Google and other search engines are always updating their algorithms in a bid to better the search results. As an online marketer, you need to be informed of any algorithm changes so you can make the necessary changes to the content on your website.
Google Panda, which was introduced in 2011, looks at the quality of the content in your site. By quality, Google Panda looks at “thin” content (content that adds little or no value to your visitors), duplicate content (content sourced from other sites) and keyword stuffed content (overused keywords).
Sites with low content are ranked low and they may not be indexed in Google. For a site to rank high, it must have original content – Google has way of checking that you are the creator of the content.
The only way to recover from a Panda hit is to perform an SEO site audit and make necessary changes. Every month Google refreshes the algorithm. If not refreshing, they call an update. To be on the safe, always publish high quality content.
Google Penguin was created in 2012 with an aim of hitting sites that create unnatural backlinks. A link is like a vote to your site. If a popular site shares a link to your site, Google will take it that your site should be highly ranked. If an unknown site shares a link to your site, it is not going to count much – unless many small sites vote for you.
In the past, you could cheat the algorithm by creating a horde of self-made links and using anchor texts. Nowadays, one self-made link may affect your whole site. While a genuine link from a known site is good, getting many links from low quality sites is also effective. Like Google Panda, Google Penguin algorithm updates refresh regularly. Get good links and your site will not be unindexed or ranked low.
Google, Bing and Yahoo are always changing their webmaster guidelines. An SEO site audit ensures that you always comply with the new tools. Here elements of Google Webmaster Tools and Analytics are key to check a site's health and overall crawl and indexing rates, which indicate trust in a site.
These enhance the usability of your website. If your website is returning a 404, 403 or any other error to the visitors, the only way to tell is through an audit. Websites errors may also include broken links.
Performing an audit will identify them and help direct the lost traffic. The meta descriptions and the title tags are the first thing that a visitor will see the moment they visit your site. It is important that they are relevant to your site content. Even a good article becomes outdated, an SEO site audit will identify outdated content.
Basically, a comprehensive audit looks at site accessibility (robots meta tags, robots.txt, XML sitemap, site architecture and performance among others), indexability (whether your webpages are indexed, whether penalized and why), on-page ranking factors (URL, content and HTML Markup), off-page ranking factors (backlinks, popularity, trustworthiness and social engagement) and finally competitive analysis.
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