Nine common SEO audit issues revealed
Website audits are an important part of any SEO strategy, before they flag down technical issues before they do too much damage to your search rankings. As a website progresses, it naturally develops complications and some issues are more common than others.
After running hundreds of SEO audits for our customers, our data reveals nine common issues that arise permanently.
Bad, broken and lost links
It’s no secret that links are an important ranking factor in Google’s search algorithm. There are five types of link problems, in particular, that we see a lot.
Low quality links: Any inbound links from third party websites that aren’t adding value to your search rankings and – in some cases – are significantly hurt.
Broken links: This is especially common in CMS platforms when image file paths are changed, such as WordPress, or inadvertently change the URL of a post after publication.
Missing internal links: Opportunities to link to other, related pages (usually blog posts) from your main pages on your site have been lost.
Unsafe links: This is especially common when you lose links while migrating from HTTP to HTTPS.
Dead link: Old links pointing to pages or files that are no longer on your site.
Thin or duplicate material
Google tells us that quality is the most important ranking factor, but quality is hard to ignore. So the search giant has to rely on other signals such as inbound links, user experience and performance measurements to test and determine the quality of each page.
There are some aspects of content quality that can be quantified, though, and the two most common concerns are:
Thin content: Pages that lack enough content to justify having a dedicated page.
Duplicate content: Multiple pages with the same or very similar content.
There are some scenarios where pages can legally highlight content, such as contact pages or indexed login pages. Google is able to understand when you justify thin content.
On the other hand, duplicate content is difficult to justify but in some cases even difficult to avoid, such as product pages where multiple versions of the same or similar product share the same specs or features that cause unique details. It becomes difficult to write.
Page titles are one of the strongest signals on the page, providing key information about the content on your pages to both users and search engines. The most common issues that come up in our audits are:
The most serious issues on the page include fraudulent or dishonest titles, click bait tactics, or titles that no one is forced to click on.
The meta description provides users with important context about the content on the page, helping them to choose which link to click. There is also an opportunity to put your list on the page.
Surprisingly, the most common error we see is that the meta description is completely missing, forcing Google to easily display the first sentence of your page. The second problem is that they are too long to show in organic listings or too short to provide valuable context.
Robot.tst does not have a sitemap
You may want to include a link to your sitemap in your Robot.tst file to help bots understand the architecture of your website, but our audits often find that it is missing.
Missing or misusing tags
More than half the entire web uses content management systems (CMS) and a major advantage of these platforms is that you can type things like page titles and meta descriptions into text fields that They use
So, even without understanding SEO, WordPress users are not likely to leave the page title field blank before publishing a new page, but even using CMS, other tags are still a nuisance. Can cause
We’ve generally found that the following tags are lost or misused when we audit.
Heading Tags: Missing tags, misuse of different heading tags or text too long.
Hreflang Tags: Implementation issues for multilingual or regional websites, ranging from incorrect language codes to broken links and backlinks to lost return links.
Canonical tags: Invalid or incorrect tags, which can cause duplicate content to be crawled and indexed.
Pages with slow load times
Loading time is still one of the most common issues highlighted in SEO audits and the search penalty for page speed is going to be heavy.
Google is set to launch a new Page Experience Signal in May this year, which includes a new signal, measurement and standard for loading times, as part of the Core WebWatts initiative.
Pages that fail to load in 2.5 seconds or less after the update will lose a small ranking increase, meaning that pages that take too long to load will fall below the SERPs. Maybe because they have sharp pages on top of them.
Images have not been improved
As a general rule, you want to make sure that the images are not larger than 1mm and that they are able to image as much as you can without sacrificing quality based on the viewing experience (you almost certainly Images do not require 4K resolution).
Another common problem we encounter with images is that ALT-Text is missing. Screen readers use this information to interpret images for visually impaired users, so missing ALT-Text is a big problem for Rasa Rasa. Google also uses this information to rank and deliver image results for relevant searches.
Missing pages and redirects
As a website grows, pages must be moved or deleted and, in some cases, you can move your entire site to a different location. When this happens, you will have internal links pointing to pages that have been moved to a new URL or removed altogether.
In this case, if you are completely missing the page, you may want to redirect to a newer version of your page or your clicked topic / anchor text to the most relevant page. You need to use 301 redirects to tell search engines and users that this page has been moved permanently.
If you plan to use the URL in queries again in the future, never use a 301 redirect and only apply a URL redirect to a 301 – redirect chain that runs through multiple URLs. Don’t set.
Everything else we see in our audit is a default 404 page that has not been modified. Create custom 404 pages with links to relevant sections of your website so that users return to your site when they mistype the URL.
Sally Newman, SEO Specialist in Vertical Leap