If you have an Ecommerce website, one of the things you should have planned in at regular intervals is to do an SEO audit of your website.
Really you should be auditing everything you do from a content marketing perspective on regular basis (content audit, social media audit etc).
Running an SEO audit is an essential part of any plan or strategy, because it will give you a clear picture of what is performing well and driving traffic and conversions, what isn’t working as well as you thought and needs changing, and what has fallen completely flat.
It will also help you identify any serious technical problems with your website, which you can quickly fix to start seeing instant improvements in your SEO.
When you do an SEO audit of your Ecommerce website, these are the main things you should be looking at.
Having a website be optimised for mobile has become one of the most important parts of Ecommerce SEO now.
Mobile traffic makes up just over 40% of all Ecommerce traffic today and is projected to become the majority source for traffic by 2023 according to a report by WorldPay.
But, Google has also shifted its focus to a more “mobile first” results strategy, meaning sites which have been built for mobile will get priority in search over those still geared towards desktop only.
So, you’ll want to make sure your website is fit for mobile.
If you want Google and search engines to be able to find your website and crawl your content (which, you do) then you need to make sure your Ecommerce website has robots/txt and an XML sitemap.
You can use SEO tools like ahrefs to understand this.
You can use these kinds of SEO tools to find out how many of your webpages are showing up on Google.
Ideally you want them all to be found, but if the number is lower than you thought, then it means Google isn’t indexing your pages (so no-one will be able to find them).
Using an SEO crawl tool you can identify any technical problems which might be causing search visibility issues.
Linking between pages is an important part of Ecommerce SEO and improving the user experience.
Some pages are only discovered by Google because they were found following a link from a previously recognised page.
The main thing to look for is the number of broken links on your website.
Broken links are links from one page that go to another page that no longer exists.
These broken links are a red flag for Google.
Again, using SEO tools you can identify these broken links and either redirect them to the updated version of the deleted page (preferred) or, if there is no updated page, redirect them to your home page.
Chance are, as an Ecommerce website you’ll be asking people to enter sensitive information into your site, like card details and home address etc.
We’ve all seen those sites that flag as “not secure” and don’t have the padlock on the URL.
This means the site doesn’t have an SSL certificate and its security isn’t upto date.
Which means any information you send via that website could be intercepted by hackers.
During your audit, make sure your website is recorded as https:// which means it’s secure and will give peace of mind to your customers – and not put them off buying from you.
Check page speed
Slow websites are one of the main reasons consumers abandon a website.
They don’t have time to sit around waiting for ages while your website loads up – and they don’t have to because there’s loads more choice apart from for them to look at.
There’s been a lot of research done into how a slow page load speed impacts customer loss from a website, but the general consensus is that any page that takes longer than three seconds to load will lose around 50% of customers.
There’s a couple of things that can impact page load speed, but all are pretty simple to put right.
Steps like compressing image or media files and caching files can help to speed up your website.
Duplicate content is any content that appears more than once on a website (particularly in a URL).
It’s a particular problem for Ecommerce websites that have similar descriptions of products on different pages.
Again, you can use an SEO tool like ahrefs to help identify any duplicate content you have.
Duplicate content is a problem because if Google sees it, it won’t know which content to give the page authority to, and it might not give it to the page you want to rank.
Worse, it could split the page authority between the duplicate pages, meaning neither page will rank as well as it could.
If you do have duplicate content, you could try combining content like blogs which cover similar topics into a single, longer form piece of content and redirecting to the new article.
If not, you can add canonical tags to the pages you want Google to treat as the main page.
A backlink profile is the number, and quality, of third party websites which are linking back to your website.
Backlinks are one of the most important factors in determining where your website will rank in search – according to Google.
When checking your backlink profile (which you can do using any SEO tool) you should check two things.
The number of backlinks, and the quality of them.
If you have lots of backlinks, but many of them are spammy, paid for links using link farms and blogging networks, you risk damaging your search authority.
What you want is a good level of quality links generated through content marketing and digital PR.
This will drive legitimate, high domain authority backlinks to your website, and signal to Google that you should appear higher in search.
Get a free SEO audit
While doing an SEO audit might seem daunting, it’s pretty straight forward if you have the SEO tools available to review your website.
If you don’t have access to those tools, we can run a free technical SEO audit on your website.
An SEO consultant will use our suite of SEO and website analytics tools to review your website, and provide a report on the areas you could improve on to start seeing better results.