Search Engine Optimization(SEO) refers to the process of making necessary changes to a website to improve its ranking in search results. In fact, 55% of clicks on search engines go to the top 3 listings, so this is definitely where you want your page to be. Despite how your business may be performing in the ‘real’ world, Google and other search engines only rank based on online factors as bots do all the work. That should tell you how important SEO is. However, SEO is something that you would not want to jump into without a proper strategy.
The first step you need to take in developing the right SEO strategy is performing an SEO analysis. SEO analysis helps you to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your SEO strategy. Remember that SEO is a zero-sum game where you’re in competition with your rivals for the same customers/visitors.
What is SEO analysis?
In-depth SEO analysis involves a review of a website’s content, structure, code, and offsite authority. You will then get an SEO score of how your website is doing. A competitive SEO analysis will then compare that score and compare your online presence to top competitors on your niche. There are many factors that affect the search engine ranking of a page, but the most important are:
- The security of your website (HTTPS vs. HTTP). Many studies have shown a correlation between HTTPS with higher search rankings because it is one of the factors Google’s algorithm takes into account
- If your website is optimized to work on mobile platforms because people are spending more time on their mobiles not only for gaming but also to optimize their lives
- Your website’s page load time as studies show most users abandon a page if it loads for more than 10 seconds
- If your website is using the correct schema markup even though you may not be a web developer, just keep track of it nonetheless
- The quality of content on your web pages because this improves your brand image
- The length of the content on your web pages since nowadays readers don’t have the patience for fluff
- Use of social signals to increase SEO authority and build up your brand
- Use of quality backlinks that improve your brand without taking anything away from it
- If you use optimized images on your web pages accompanied by alt text that search engine algorithms look for
- If your competitors are using specific search terms to outrank you, it’s probably because of one of these factors. One thing you should keep in mind about ranking is that it doesn’t equate to business growth.
- Your website can take the first spot for every search keyword or phrase and still go out of business because none of the visitors convert to real customers. In short, having the right SEO strategy and ranking high in search results is not enough.
- The right SEO should go together with a comprehensive marketing strategy that includes a conversion rate.
Why is SEO analysis important?
After developing and implementing a good SEO strategy on your website, you have to track the impact it has had on your website. For instance, if you have written 10 pages of content around different keywords and indexed them on various search engines. You will be able to analyze how these pages have been driving traffic to your website and the impact they had of your keyword rankings.
You also need to analyze the technical SEO work you have done on your website. Basically, this includes conversion rate optimization, page load speed, and coding work. You will need a web developer to help you in this, but when it comes to tracking the progress of your SEO strategy, you will need a comprehensive analysis of metrics.
In the simplest words, SEO analysis is vital for you to rank higher, drive traffic, expand your customer base, and achieve your business goals. With an analysis, you will be able to make strategic decisions, thus saving time and reducing resources spent. SEO gets complicated when you are dealing with the breadth and depth of data and the various tools available. Indeed, there are over 200 factors that determine your website’s page ranking, so you really need a tool to crunch all the data sets.
The best SEO analysis tools
There are many SEO tools you can use today to strategize and analyze your campaigns. There are many tools for this purpose, but you need to use the right tools to get the best results. If you don’t use the right tools, you may feel lost and confused and the analysis might take a longer time.
Here are some of the best SEO tools you should use:
Google Search Console
Formerly known as Google Webmaster Tools, the Google Search Console is a free service that has remained a vital tool for SEO analysis. There’s so much you can do with the tool, such as:
- check Googlebot crawl rates and statistics
- list both internal and external pages that link to your website
- get the notification for specific search results
- identify keywords that drove traffic to your website listed in the SERPs
If you are looking forward to some meaningful SEO analysis, then you should consider using Google Search Console.
Check My Links
There is nothing as worse as using broken links on your content. Check My Links is an essential tool that will help you to avoid such mistakes.
You simply need to add it to your Chrome web browser and you will be able to ensure all linked on your website are working. Check My Links will check all the links and tell you which ones are working properly. You will also see ones that are broken.
Moz Pro has an impressive suite of solutions. This includes:
- Keyword research-come up with a list of target keywords, compare your website’s ranking with competitors and create a list of keywords based on essential metrics such as organic CTR
- Rank tracking–keep track of how your website compares to your competitors while constantly monitoring how various keywords rank on the internet. Plus, you can analyze how your website is mostly viewed either on desktop or mobile devices
- Site crawl – analyze your own website to find out what issues are affecting it. You can then find out how these issues are affecting your SEO and if there are any common issues to fix and be notified in case of any new occurrences
- On-page optimization – to make the content on your pages more optimized, use the keywords you use against page combinations to know how to do it better. Meanwhile, check other authority websites and get new ideas to use on your own website
- Link research – Link Tracking Lists helps you receive a complete analysis of your profile and compare it to that of your competitors while setting new goals and keeping track of progress with your link-building
- Custom reports –generate and export the reports you need covering crawl data rankings among search engines and links, personalize these charts and graphs and also brand them
UpCity SEO Report Card
Before you can execute any SEO strategy, you need to find out a lot about your website. UpCity’s free tools perform an analysis of your website and give you a report of the following:
- A general summary of your website and how it compares to the competition in the same space
- The building of links that drive traffic to your website
- Rank analysis among search engines
- Accessibility of your website from desktop and mobile devices
- Analysis of the website for content quality, page responsiveness, load speeds, etc.
Knowing these should help you know where to start in improving your SEO strategies, and it’s all free.
Website Grader from HubSpot
HubSpot lets you know where your website stands compared to your competition in the form of a grade between 0 and 100. All you need is to enter your website’s URL and voila – your website is graded. The grade is determined from an analysis of factors as:
- Mobile accessibility – how responsive your site is on mobile devices, its accessibility and how your visitors responded to it. This accounts for 30 out of the maximum 100 points
- Overall performance – the size of your site’s pages, how fast it responds to requests, browser caching, etc. These are important to the user experience and account for 30 points
- SEO – from titles to meta descriptions, use of tags and sitemap presence, these SEO factors are analyzed and ranged from 0 to 30 points to form your website SEO audit
- Security – simply having a valid SSL certificate grants you 10 points
All of the above SEO analysis tools are different in their own way, but they all give you a starting point for improving your site’s ranking because you can’t make improvements until you recognize where the problem was.
Among the SEO tools, however, Google’s Webmaster Tools is still one of the most popular ones to date. That is because it is free, easy to use and provided by Google – the most popular search engine provider – and that gives people a lot of confidence in it. But as long as a company has a budget for SEO analysis, investing in paid tools like Moz Pro can give a lot of additional benefits.
What should you expect from an SEO analysis?
Depending on the tool you choose for your SEO analysis, you will get varying information from the reports. Nevertheless, there are several common data you should expect to receive such as:
- An SEO analysis of competition shows you who the top competitors within your industry are and how they perform in their SEO compared to your own SEO strategy
- Analysis of your keywords, how they rank, how often they are searched through search engines, the keywords your competitors use and how those perform and organic CTR
- An audit of your backlinks to identify the ones that are spammy or have lower quality. Good backlinks increase traffic to your website and therefore rankings, but bad ones lose you points
- How your site performs in terms of loading speeds and page navigation as people don’t have the patience to wait
- More information about your website’s structure and organization to make navigation easy and effective
- A website SEO audit of your current pages, those that have repetitive content and those that may have inferior content
- Use of meta descriptions, alt text for the images used and integration with social media
- How the site responds on both desktop and mobile devices
It doesn’t take an expert to recognize that this is vital information for any site owner. Knowing this information on your website in a single comprehensive SEO analysis report should help you make necessary changes. This should help improve page rankings and lead to long-term success through a comprehensive SEO plan.
What will a proper SEO analysis do for you?
Once you have run an SEO analysis using one of the tools mentioned above, you should know how to improve your website and beat competitors for that top spot in search engines. But that is not the ultimate goal, as you can have the ultimate SEO strategy but lack business. Then it comes down to actually converting those clicks and visits into an actual business. This means:
- Turning higher ranking into increased organic traffic to your website and more potential customers
- Higher quality backlinks also increase your site’s visibility from authority websites and further raises the site’s ranking among search engines. Once the cycle begins it becomes like a row of dominos
- Website SEO audit on your own current pages tell you how to improve content to reduce the bounce rate and keep visitors interested either on desktop or mobile devices
- Once you have the visitor’s attention, engage them into taking action through increased calls and sent web forms
- Increasing phone calls and web forms mean more sales for your business and less for your competition, which ultimately leads to more revenue