Search site audit: sequence, tools, and cases

The search audit is understood a set of measures aimed at finding the causes that prevent the Internet resource to rank highly in the results of search engines.

Every detail is important in promoting the site — from the tag in the code, to high-quality design.

In this article, I will describe how to conduct a technical verification of the site and SEO-audit by the example of one of the unconfigured sites.

Audit of an unconfigured site

Let’s take as an example an unconfigured site of my potential client .

We are not optimizing the site for the right search terms. We analyze the errors in the site for further correction.

Here I will describe than to analyze the sites, what are the main errors and how to fix them.

I’ll write the most interesting part at the end of the article!

Technical verification of the site

Quick site analysis

Service allows getting a general idea about the site.

Analysis of server redirects (check manually)

  1. Redirect is set without/with www.
  2. There is also a double of main page
  3. There is no redirect to 404 error page
  4. There is no redirect to the page with / and without / at the end: and same page with slightly different addresses turned out.
  5. I also found at random an extra page
  6. The remaining duplicates can be viewed when you have access to Yandex Webmaster.

Check the control system and analyze the main vulnerabilities / disadvantages of the system. The system is self-written in this case, and you can expect anything from it.

Robots.txt analysis (manually or semi-automatically)

User-agent: *

Disallow: /cgi-bin

Disallow: /links.php

Disallow: /setup.php

Disallow: /admin.php

Here you need to prescribe the main host, a sitemap and close the administration / admin sections

This is the bare minimum!

If you want, you can prescribe rules for each search robot, but practice shows that this is not always necessary.

Check the correctness of closing certain links from search engines can be checked through the service Yandex Webmaster.

Site Map (Automatic/Semi-Automatic)

At this address (or another predetermined) should lie a site map in xml format. It is either generated automatically or manually updated regularly. This service will automatically make a site map once. This is suitable for large sites with self-written admin panel, when there is no module to automatically generate a sitemap, but it is urgently needed for rapid indexing by search engines.

Site code analysis (Manual)

Valid layout can be checked by a special service , and the correct configuration of the code can only be evaluated manually.

Here I will move down through the page from top to bottom and describe in a row all the remarks on the site.

Meta tags

  1. <title>Selling and installation of tower, gantry, bridge cranes and other lifting equipment — </title> There is not finished tag. There is a dash at the end. In addition, it is desirable to make this tag longer, consisting of 3-4 sentences, describing this page with the maximum keywords and their synonyms.
  2. <meta name=»description» content=»Sale, rent, repair, maintenance, assembly and disassembly of tower, gantry, bridge cranes and other hoisting equipment. » /> It should not be a listing of services, but a description of the site page. For example: «Sales of tower cranes. Repair and maintenance of overhead cranes and other lifting equipment. «

 It is better to write about the rent on a separate page dedicated to the rent.

3 <meta name=»keywords» content=»Tower cranes, gantry cranes, bridge cranes, portal cranes, mobile cranes, self-mounting cranes, selling cranes, rent cranes, installation of cranes, dismantling cranes, repair of cranes, crane maintenance, expert evaluation of cranes, crane design, lifting equipment, COMANSA, LIEBHERR, POTAIN » /> Here a large number of words can be detrimental to the site. You can leave 1 -2 keys or do not fill the field. If you fill with words that are not on the page, it may have a negative impact on promoting.

Template code

  1. <meta name=»description» content=» />
    <meta name=»keywords» content=» />

This code came across just below the main meta tags. This is an unnecessary double.

  1. <div class=»logo»><a href=»/»><p></p></a></div>

For the logo, we need a title tag with the main key query. This would make a great end-to-end link.

  1. <div><span>(812) 320-33-99 </span></div></p></div>

The phone is not designed quite right. You need to remove the spans, as well as add a micro-marking of contact information for better indexing by search engines and improve the appearance of the snippet.

  1. <param name=»movie» value=»/sevka.swf» />

We need to get rid of Flash. Especially this kind of sliders is very easy to do in jquery and perfectly indexed.

  1. <li><a href=»/catalog/2/»>

Tower cranes COMANSA</a></li> All links must be signed with the title tag, and pictures with the alt tag as well!

  1. <h1> SevZapKran SPb — delivery, installation, commissioning, service and repair of lifting equipment.</h1> Tag H1 is designed correctly, without unnecessary code. However the text should be more concise and clear. A word SPb and the name of the company to write in the headings is no longer necessary. You can write as follows: «Sale and installation of tower cranes» and below subheadings to describe all services.
  2. <span style=»font-size:12.0pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; mso-fareast-language:RU» mce_style=»font-size:12.0pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;mso-fareast-language:RU»> Such pieces of code should be placed in a style sheet. Any garbage in the code negatively affects the position of the site.
  3. In addition, the code contains impurities of Word design, which indicates that the visual editor was inserted the text designed in Word directly, without clearing it. This is also very bad for the site.

Friendly SEO URL

The section pages have a similar look:

If the control system allows, you should regenerate the pages so that only one address makes it clear what it is about, for example,

Text formatting (check manually)

Now it is necessary to scroll through the main pages and check in the code how the text is formatted. It is necessary to check also whether the lists are decorated, whether there are pictures in an optimal format, prescribed whether the subheadings, whether there is no excessive bold text or overspamming.

The lists are not designed on this site, and some pages contain only one sentence of the content.

Automated site analysis

There are many services. I use this one

It quickly analyzes the site for broken links, checks the quality of the linking and the length of the headers on the site.

 For multi-page sites, it is impossible to manually view all pages, but with a tool like this you can greatly facilitate your work.

After analyzing the site, I found a lot of pages with pdf documents without meta tags, and pages with approximately the same headers.

It all needs to be manually unique.

If the pages are more than 300-odd pieces, then you need to write or set up a script to automatically generate Title based on general information about the page.

General analysis, whether the site is promoted at all

On, there is a service for selecting queries close to the top. Enter any site, and if it is on the Internet for more than 2-3 months, the system will show queries for which it saw over the past 2-3 weeks in the top 100 search engines.

So, if these queries in the top 10 is less than 20 pcs, then most likely the site has not been promoted and configured correctly (given the large amount of content — from 50 pages).

This site happens to be on the specified positions because of its age and accumulated company name.

Analysis of the site snippet

 As you can see from the screenshot, now the snippet is not perfect.

  1. The header should be shortened / split into shorter sentences so that the search engine does not cut it.
  2. Quick links need to be made by setting up the linking intelligently.
  3. The snippet text should be rewritten with more enticing words. We find this text on the page and replace it.
  4. In the webmaster, we add the subject of the site, and the case of the name of the site, so that it is at least with a capital letter in the output. Then the snippet will be more attractive.
  5. We will need links to social networks for the set. We add them to the webmaster and site footer.
  6. Do not forget about micromarking. It directly affects the snippet.

Thus, the snippet will be the most filled and attractive!

Analysis of links to the site (if you do not have access to webmaster)

On, you can analyze the inbound links to the resource.

Quite a few sites are linked to our analyzed site. This is mostly message boards.


This kind of audit should be conducted for each site, just taken for promotion. Based on this, you should make a list of recommendations for the site owner or webmaster, who will set it up.

This list is not complete. There are books written about the internal optimization of the site.

In this article, I reflected the main points to which you should pay attention when auditing the site.

Now here is the most interesting part:

The bottom line is that perfect sites are disastrously few! The errors/defects will be on almost all sites.

Let’s take a fairly well-known company to promote sites and do a little analysis of this company’s site I took at random the very first in the list.

  1. There are no redirects with www/without www.
  2. In the robots, site map shows and gives out an error 404!
  3.…p?SECTION_ID=6, there is no Friendly SEO URL. There is strange title.
  4. The code of the articles is overloaded.
  5. Paragraph styles are desirable to align and links to sign titles.

Well, etc…

In general, the second conclusion is this:

Sites need to analyze and improve constantly! There are no absolutely perfect sites, because even if everything is set up,  there will be new services, standards, or modules, without which all the advantages can be lost.

Author: CEO of Intop-Media, Eugene Gluschenko.

Article for the contest on 12/09/2013


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