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The 10 Best Website Audits to Keep Your Site Healthy

The doctor reminds you at your latest visit to come back in a year for another comprehensive checkup. “Keep it up,” he says with a smile, “But we still need to screen for potential problems, and make sure you’re at optimal health.”

Like that annual reminder to stay on top of your wellbeing, a website audit is one of the smartest and most proactive maintenance practices for any business with an online presence.

A website audit sounds like a mundane, straightforward thing:

  • Check page load and server response times
  • Look over content for SEO improvements
  • Assess the conversion rate

While all three of these are elements of a good, comprehensive audit, they only scratch the surface of what is available.

10 Website Audit Types You Need to Know

An amazing website is only as strong as its design, and its content. The right website audit will give you everything you need to know about performance, security, customer conversions, and so much more.

Below, we listed the 10 primary types of audits to empower you – the enterprise leader – in customizing your website review options. Once you’ve reviewed the full list, you will know how to establish an audit framework. That will enable you to report and analyze important data and act on it to launch your business to the next level.

1. Website Health Audits

This is where all good audits begin. As the name indicates, a website health audit offers a comprehensive look at how your site is doing. You may need a website health audit because traffic numbers have recently dropped, or due to the positioning of unknown causation.

The first area a website health audit will explore is the technical side of things. You will get an inside look at down time, caching, server metrics, and hosting. SEO will be analyzed, which means meta data will be looked at closely. Internal and external links will be explored, including ratings on how much value they bring to your enterprise.

2. Performance Assessment/Audit

Is your website reaching people, or is it simply taking up digital real estate? This is the primary question a performance audit strives to answer.

A performance assessment will include close analysis of traffic, leads, and sales. It will compare fluctuations in all three. A tune-up across the board on these issues can greatly improve customer conversions. Any performance audit should also include red flags – indicators of potential future glitches.

You should walk away from an audit of this type with a better understanding of the way visitors view your website and your brand, and how to get more of those visitors to find you and stick around long enough to buy something.

3. Security Audits

A security audit is another one with a self-explanatory name. If you worry about security risks, this type of audit can pay dividends in peace of mind. Hackers are always looking for weaknesses and an easy way in. Keep those entrances locked tight with a solid security audit.

4. Competitor Analysis Audits

Does your business operate in a highly-crowded field, with a large number of competitors? Perhaps you need to get the lay of the land and directly compare your online performance with your primary rival. A competitor analysis audit is a priceless way to gauge the impact that rival is having on your bottom line.

Ask for their search rankings, traffic, backlinks, keywords, and more. All is fair in love and war – and the better your arsenal, the easier it will be to do what your competitors are doing and beat them at their own game.

5. Red Flag and Recovery Audits

The most brilliant web designer, (and the most eager marketing staff) can inadvertently get a red flag from Google that destroys their ranking. Here are some of the ways that happen.

To avoid this scenario, or to make sure it never takes place again, most audits will identify the potential for red flags. Beware the snake oil salesman who promises to rid you of all your red flags, and skyrocket your search results to #1. Instead, seek out a company that can provide you with sound strategy based on lengthy experience, and hard data.

6. Conversion Optimization Audits

“Conversion” is a fancy marketing phrase that points to one result: Is the customer making a buy? Conversion optimization audits focus on website performance and SEO results that either encourage a hinder the client as they move toward a purchase. If your website is selling something, this type of audit is highly valuable.

7. On-Site Audit

After technical questions are answered, an on-site audit focuses on your pages. Are your hyperlinks updated and active? Are appropriate keywords and key phrases, based in timely research, deployed across your website? How well are calls to action phrased? Do multiple pages say the same thing? An on-site audit will look at all of these issues.

8. Off-Site Audit

If the Internet is a spider web, your website should connect to other sites with ties that bind, but do not hinder a spider’s movements or get him lost. Off-site links are a smart component of any analysis, because those backlinks all help potential clients find their way back to you. The smarter your connections, the greater your influence and impact in your chosen industry.

9. Social Media Visibility Audit

Chances are, your website is linked to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or other platforms. Perhaps clients are talking about your product, or they are sharing your content. A social media visibility audit will outline the frequency and depth of those mentions, retweets, comments, etc. An excellent social media audit will also give you the tools to set social sharing goals.

10. Local SEO Audit

If you sell tractors in farm country, or snow gear in the Midwest, you are targeting a local audience. That’s where a local SEO audit can help. To beat your competitors, you need to know what they are working with. It starts with the basics: Are your address and phone number searchable? Is it easy for people to figure out how to contact you? Local SEO audits can also help you with the appropriate keyword research and linkage to rank higher than other companies selling similar goods.

The Auditor Matters

There are plenty of free tools out there to spit out data re: your website. When you pay someone to perform an audit, you aren’t paying for the information – you are paying for the expert interpretation of that information. Make sure whoever you have entrusted with the job knows what they’re doing.

Here at MSTech, we work with companies just like yours every day to design classic and attractive websites, optimize client conversions, and rev up SEO. A customized audit is just one of the many ways that we can give you a feel for the performance potential of your site. If you feel ready to make that deep dive and take your website to the next level, click here.

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