I’m always amazed by the growing number of “SEO Experts” out there… I mean, hey, if you’ve been doing SEO for more than six months, your a friggin guru!
Because being an SEO is the cool thing to do for a profession and there’s a plethora of information about the trade online (good and bad) it’s hard to know if what you/your team/your agency is reading and executing on your site is going to provide sustainable results for years to come. Because of this, third party SEO audits are becoming a very popular thing and are an extremely wise investment for just about any company.
Let’s talk about the different situations you might be in and how an SEO audit can help you tackle your marketing initiatives and accomplish your goals.
You’re Just Getting Started With SEO
If you are just getting started with SEO and are serious about investing your time and money into a campaign, an SEO audit can give you a good idea if your site is in good shape from a search engine stand point or if you are already in some trouble. A good website audit can help you uncover technical issues that could make it hard for the search engines to crawl and index your website and so forth. An audit can also tell you what is working for you and shouldn’t be changed.
You’ve Been Outsourcing Your SEO For While
This is probably one of the biggest reasons companies want an SEO audit. Let’s face it, there are a lot of CRAPPY SEO companies out there and they can hose you over in a hurry. I always recommend to anyone outsourcing their SEO to have a third party perform a site audit at least once per year. This keeps the SEO company honest and alerts the client of any foul practice or low quality SEO that could hurt them in the long run.
You’re Thinking About Bringing SEO In House
Very similar to the one above, if you’ve been outsourcing your SEO and are thinking about bringing it in house, you will definitely want a third party to perform an SEO audit. This will give your in house team a road map of areas that need your immediate attention and strategies and tactics that haven’t been working so well for them in the past.
You’ve Been Doing SEO In House For Awhile
If you’ve been doing SEO in house for awhile and your team hasn’t had much turnover, it’s also wise to perform a site audit… probably yearly. Yes, your team is most likely reading and staying up to date with the latest and greatest strategies being spewed by thought leaders, but are they doing exactly what your business needs for sustainable results? You’ll never know unless you get a website audit.
You’re Not Happy With Your Website’s Current Performance
Another reason to get a search engine optimization audit is because you are unhappy with your current website’s performance. If you’re working your tail off and things don’t seem to be improving, a site audit can quickly uncover the root cause and provide insight into what you can do to boost your visibility in the search engines.
You’ve Been Hit By An Algorithm Update
Um… fairly obvious, but if your website has been hit by an algorithm update, you should consider a website audit. Not only will an audit help you identify what algorithm update affected your negatively, but what that algo update targeted and what steps need to be taken to fix it.
You Need An Advocate To Sell SEO Changes Internally
Believe it or not, a lot of companies have a hard time selling SEO to executives as well as site changes to IT. This was the case when I worked with Dell. If you need an outside “advocate” to come in and help sell your strategy and changes, a site audit is a fantastic idea!
I’ve also seen companies hire a consultant to perform site audit just to receive confirmation that your recommendations have legs and will provide value to the company.
You Want To Measure Your SEO Progress
Lastly, if you want to measure the progress of your SEO efforts, you might want to consider an SEO website audit. For my clients, I try and perform website audits on a monthly basis, just to make sure we are on the right track and making progress.
In closing, if a search engine optimization site audit isn’t in your plans for 2013 or 2014, I highly recommend you to consider one, regardless of whether you work at a large or small organization. 9/10 times, an audit will always help your SEO campaign, will open your eyes to new ideas or methodologies, and will validate your strategy when selling your IT or management team.