How to Conduct a Quick On-Site SEO Audit (Part 2)
Missing Title Tags
Done with writing unique title tags? Good! But, the buck doesn’t stop here. Making sure you aren’t missing title tags is equally as important as making sure you’ve written unique ones.
The best way to go about this step is by developing a list of pages that are missing title tags or whose text is simply your company’s name. To fish these out, you have a lot of options regarding software that will do it for you. However, a good free solution is Google Webmaster Tools (GMT).
Within your GMT account, navigate to the Optimization menu and then click HTML Improvements. Amongst the suggestions, you will be able to see those that are directly related with title tags. Take them, put them into that Excel sheet, and fix them!
Duplicate Title Tags
Tying in with the above, make room on your Excel spreadsheet for the addition of pages GWT kicks back at you as duplicate. Through an audit of duplicate title tags and writing unique title tags for those that are repeated elsewhere, you’re accomplishing a lot of good.
A lot of people tend to ignore these on-page SEO factors because they deem them such low-hanging fruit that they’re not worth the time to address. Don’t fall victim to this ideology!
Consider this: If your competitor is ignoring these factors, refusing to do the same will keep you level competitively. But, if you do take time to address the low-hanging fruit and your competitor doesn’t, where does that leave you? Ahead.
Missing Alt Tags
Unsurprisingly, missing alt tags – much like missing title tags – is not good. Alt tags are incredibly beneficial with regards to optimizing non-textual aspects of your time, like images.
Here’s an example of an image with an alt tag:
If you were to view the “source” of the image – that is, the HTML being used to render the image – you’ll find that I’ve filled out the alt tag. Don’t believe me? View the source. Don’t know how? Right-click the image and depending on your browser, either click “Inspect element” or simply “View source.”
Missing Image Names
In addition to making sure your images have alt tags, making sure they also have names plays a vital role in their optimization. Don’t just name them anything, though! Cater their names to the topic of the web page in which they exist.
The most commonly overlooked image in this regard is the company logo. The tendency for many designers is to simply name the logo “logo.jpg.” However, doing this excludes you from the SEO benefit of appropriately naming the logo – which should be “[your company name]-logo.jpg” – because it doesn’t add more targeted text for search engines to crawl.
What’s more, minding your Ps and Qs regarding correctly naming images will help you in a way you probably didn’t realize: Properly optimized images can drive traffic – and lots of it! – to your site via image searches conducted on search engines.
H tags (the “H” stands for “header”) are of significant SEO importance and are probably one of the most fundamental on-page factors to make sure you’ve locked down tight. In short, H tags are to search engines as headlines in textbooks are to students. They (the search engines) place high importance on H tags, much like a student would with headlines in textbooks, because they allow them to quickly figure out the topic of a web page without much guess work.
Feeding off that, when you’re doing an audit of your use of H tags, make sure you have an inkling of hierarchy in place with regard to their use. There are 6 H tags (H1 through H6). Headlines containing your target keyword should mostly always be wrapped in H1 tags, but don’t overdo it. Stick with a couple of H1-wrapped headlines and wrap the rest in H2 tags (but make sure it makes since to designate the headlines as sub-headlines first).
And with that comes the conclusion of Part 2 of the 3-part series, “How to Conduct a Quick On-Site SEO Audit.” The next and final part of the series will cover ways to avoid confusing the ever living bajeezus out of the search engines and a handful of tips to guide you in writing (or re-writing) content so engaging and informative people will be running to share it with their friends!