After all the hard work and dedication of months, finally, you are ready to relaunch your website in a new avatar, bringing it back to life with a touch of modernity, stylish looks, and new technology running it. Isn’t it a really exciting time? Of course, all the efforts and hard work are for getting your website live quickly for your audience and generate as much traffic as possible, and that’s completely normal and fine…
But hold fire!
Before even thinking of developing your new website, you should be sure and convinced enough that everything is going to function smoothly from an SEO point of view! After all, your hard work is not to lose all of your traffic, rankings, and revenue that it generates, right? So, today, we’re digging at why you need to carry out a Technical SEO Audit before you relaunch your dream website.
To play safer and tick all the boxes of your expectations from the relaunch of the website it is necessary to perform an SEO audit. A proper technical SEO audit will help you to trace the potential SEO loopholes before the relaunch, helping you to get the issues fixed in time before the relaunching.
An SEO audit performed before relaunching the website is quite different from the general SEO audit because it is going to be a situation of Before Vs. After an, it has its set of challenges.
There are various tools available used to perform an SEO audit subject to the website accessibility on the web to scan the site. But a redesigned website may be hidden behind password-protected gates or maybe on an internal server making it inaccessible to online these tools.
So, What Is A Technical SEO Audit?
To put it into simple words, a thorough analysis of your website, lifting the hood and diving straight into the engine that powers the website is a technical SEO Audit usually performed by SEO experts. Generally, while performing an SEO audit, SEO experts will be analyzing every aspect of the website with the help of multiple tools.
Your website is reviewed and assessed against the best practice SEO guidelines such as Page Titles, Page Speed, Canonical Tags during and technical SEO audit. Also, a site is reviewed from a structural perspective, to ensure its strength to the best.
While performing the technical SEO Audit a historical performance and issues of the website are also tracked, analyzed, and addressed.
The Technical SEO audit will help you to create a plan of action for your website developers, to fix the issues as part of a site builder to make your relaunch successful.
Why have a Technical SEO Audit?
After covering what technical SEO audit is all about briefly you will be probably wondering why you would even need one if your website is running really well for years, generating revenue each month quite consistently, right?
Well, you would be really surprised to know what potential your website holds for you as soon as you submit a new sitemap and announce to Google you have a website relaunched in the new look and feel! Relaunch audit can be under two simple steps namely pre-launch and post-launch.
When to Carry Out A Technical SEO Audit?
So far you must be knowing that what is the exact need of the technical SEO audit, now the question is when to conduct this audit to unlock the real opportunities for improving the website. Always get a technical SEO audit done before the relaunching & development as simple as that. It should be the very first thing to do as part of any new website development process to help you to define the development work required for the new website success by planned development of itinerary, allowing the developers to schedule all aspects of the website build.
However, conducting a technical SEO audit in mid of the website development can cause delays and difficulties for the developers to resolve the issues timely leading to re-develop parts of the website
Many businesses do not develop a website by themselves instead they take the help of experts and get their website designed by the designers. Many times the designers do not prioritize the SEO part which might create the issues in near future costing you huge. So, you must perform a Technical SEO Audit before a relaunch covering the below aspects;
- Analytics review
- Technical review
- Content review
- Link review
BenchmarkingSome pre-launch audits may go deeper than the above five points, but for a start, let’s dig into these aspects
As you relaunch the website in an all-new look and feel, you just want to ensure that your web analytics continue to seamlessly track from the old website version to the new version. Ascertain your analytics tracking code is on every page is programmed correctly.
An if in case you are not using Google Tag Manager (GTM) it’s a good time to integrate it for adding additional marketing tags to your site with ease without any web designer or developer support.
For using GTM for the first time, don’t skip to remove any Google Analytics code from the site and add it via GTM and not duplicate them on pages. Be sure to add an annotation to easily identify the relaunch date when looking at the graphs.
Technical issues can completely damage your SEO Practices. As you are well informed how your existing site works but are not sure regarding the new design, layout, images, and code creating some glitches in your website’s smooth functioning.
One of the more common technical SEO is new page load time which can create a deep impact. Ensure the smooth and quick page load as all the servers and web hosts are created equal, and some just aren’t as fast to start loading your pages. So it is advisable to test out your time to the first byte using various tools and ensure the speedy page upload
The image size can be a huge issue on websites. Many times website content is not updated by web designers themselves and that’s the beauty of a Content Management System (CMS) it allows everyone working in the organization regardless of their technical knowledge to contribute to the website, but this can also lead to some severe problems for page speed because of image uploads. Here’s an example of how this happens.
While writing and rewriting content on the website you must review your keywords and should optimize them for generating more traffic and if in case there is no appropriate page on the current site for them, you are advised to consider creating a new page if needed on the new site.
If you are using the CMS, you will need a plugin to edit the title tag and meta description tag on each page & if you are using Word Press you can use the Yoast SEO plugin to perform this task and keep your content updated and attractive.
You have to take care of 301 redirects if your domain isn’t changing, You must certainly optimize your internal links from page to page on your site for proper website functioning. It’s advisable to do the process of adding or editing content during relaunch and add the internal links to pages.
Finally, it’s time to benchmark SEO metrics to ensure the organic traffic to the site from various search engines, current rankings for various high-traffic keywords. This will help you to keep your website on track and tempt more and more readers to scroll down your website
Once you go live with your new website, you will be required to monitor it closely to trace any changes in organic traffic and ranking internally every day roughly for a couple of weeks to ensure seamless and smooth functioning, comparing daily data to benchmark set. If any dips or losses are observed, diagnose the problem as soon as possible.
Legacy SEO Issues
Analysis of the potential legacy issues is very crucial while performing the technical SEO audit as this can be your hidden pitfall for a long time and also can be moved over to a new website during development due to unawareness of developers.
Even your website may have been running well in the past as Google’s crawl budget you still might face this Legacy issues that can be traced at time or relaunch. Once given a soft penalty if still issues are not addressed might lead to a full algorithmic penalty resulting in a significant drop in rankings, loss of visitors, and conversions.
How Do I Find Someone Perfect To conduct A Technical SEO Audit?
Now you know all about the technical SEO audit as part of a website relaunch, the next step is to find someone to carry it out for you. A lot of people out there are willing to conduct technical SEO audits for your website but you have to consider the qualitative aspects of these audits covering everything that developers can understand and implement.
Generally, these audits are carried out by a team working closely with developers. These audits should be incredibly serious to allow you to hit the ground running!
Your website is voice of your business!