We want to pull relevant traffic to our website, as these will most probably turn out to be quality leads which have a higher chance at conversion. Which is why organic search engine traffic is the best traffic. You may ask why?
It’s simple, because these people are already searching for the term which your content is ranking for. When people search for specific terms, it means they are looking for a solution, and your business can provide the solution for them. This works way better than “pushing” out advertisements asking people to buy from you.
The cost of SEO is significantly lower than running paid ads, thus decreasing acquisition cost per customer. You could even say that SEO is FREE if you have the experience and know-how to implement it yourself.
Otherwise the only cost you incur for doing SEO is hiring a trustworthy SEO agency to help grow your rankings.
As mentioned above, by putting out good content with a well-thought-out SEO strategy, we are able to pull more relevant traffic to your business website. Traffic which reaches your website via SEO strategies are more likely to convert as the audience fits your website content.
This also means that there’s an intent in the search, an intent to look for a service or product to solve their problem, and your website fit their search intent. So, the likelihood for conversion for traffic with intent is exceptionally high compared to traffic which came from a paid advertisement.
We’re in business for the long-term, and unless you are a multi-million-dollar company, you probably don’t have the marketing budget to put out paid advertising for the long term. Your best bet then is to pull traffic to your business website instead of pushing out ads.
Having well written SEO copy will give you a cost-effective long-term traffic magnet which can last you years without additional cost once the content has been put up. We think it’s a no-brainer.
As mentioned above, the content on your website lasts a long time. A well written piece can last several years and keep pulling in relevant traffic, giving you consistent results over a longer period of time. If you are out for long lasting results, then your best bet is to get your website content search engine optimized.
Google loves content, but there’s one thing Google loves even more, relevant and optimized content. Google has a reputation to maintain, as such they are stringent in filtering and matching relevant content to searchers. Imagine Google giving you irrelevant search results every time you searched for something, chances are you won’t be using Google anymore.
The only way for you to pass the Google or any search engine’s test is by putting out well-crafted search engine optimized content. This will help search engine spiders to crawl and index your website as accurately as possible, and subsequently serve your website as relevant search results in your industry.
Having good SEO content on your website will help improve your overall online marketing efforts. Be it social media or SEM, you will see an overall improvement in your online marketing ROI as any complementing marketing activity will serve to support and push your rankings even higher.
Good SEO copy can be tweaked and re-used in social media and other marketing channels, which will then point back to your website, thus increasing the results of your overall online marketing effort.
We know that Google updates their algorithm often, sometimes it’s to tackle some unscrupulous black hat practices, but oftentimes it’s to improve overall user experience.
The only sure-fire safe way to stay in Google’s good books is to produce killer content which is search engine optimized. Killer content needs to be relevant to the search term you want to rank for as well, as such there is still no avoiding SEO-ing your copywriting.
Good SEO Copywriting not only gives users relevant content that’s helpful, it also helps to build your brand. Users who frequently find your web page in their search results will tend to remember your brand more easily. Having good SEO copy will increase the repetitive appearance of your brand in the search results for your target audience and thus helps to build brand retention in them.
Search engine results pages (SERPs) will always try to serve the most relevant search results to the user. By optimizing your content for your target keywords, you increase the chances of search engines serving your web page as a relevant search result.
As more users click-through to your web page, search engines will see that your web page is more relevant than the one above and increase your ranking over-time. Having good SEO copy will eventually land your website on the front-page of major search engine results.
The Internet or World Wide Web as its name suggests, is meant to be inter-national or world-wide. We are fortunate to live in this era, as we now have the means to penetrate global markets while operating from our home country.
If your site has good, relevant and optimized content, then it has the potential to not only reach local markets, but international markets as well. The only limit you have is by not taking action to do SEO properly.
As mentioned previously, we are in business for the long-term, as such we would need a long-term marketing plan. Now equipped with the knowledge on the importance of SEO, let SEO concepts guide your long-term marketing strategies.
Either plan your marketing strategies around your SEO strategy or vice-versa, if you already have tons of good, relevant and optimized content, why not use it in your marketing strategy?
Conversely, create relevant content to complement a new marketing strategy, all with the conscious decision to SEO your newly created content so that it brings relevant traffic for your marketing campaign.
We mentioned earlier how you can build your brand with SEO copywriting. What do you think happens if people keep finding relevant content and solutions on your business website?
They begin to trust your brand, even the search engines will start to recognize your brand authority in your industry. The key is to keep putting out good, relevant and optimized content.
We all want a good user experience when surfing the web, but are we providing users who visit our websites a good user experience? Often times we are met with irrelevant content or a badly designed website, or both.
Now, with a nicely designed website, your next step would be to provide relevant content to your users. To achieve that, you need to make sure your content is optimized for the relevant search terms users will search for.
Doing this will ensure search engines refer relevant traffic to your website, and subsequently have a good experience going through your content.
As consumers, we do our research online these days before making a purchase. The same goes to your customers, they are most likely doing research before deciding to purchase your products or services.
Knowing this, it is a good opportunity for you to impact your customers buying cycle by using well written copy to convert them.
SEO is a long-term strategy, taking as long as 6 – 12 months to see significant rankings. However, once you make it up to the top of the rankings, you rarely go back down.
The only reason your rankings would drop is either due to SEO competition or a major change in the Google algorithm.
So, take your time and build a steady foundation of optimized content, this will solidify your position more easily compared to any black hat techniques.
The major benefit of online marketing is that everything you do is trackable and quantifiable, try putting up a billboard and ask your agency for statistics and conversion rates and you will be greeted with a blank stare.
Data is crucial in the digital age, it can be the determining factor to steer your business in the right direction, or continue to sail blindly in the digital ocean and hope you don’t hit a digital ice-berg.
Rest assured though, all your well-thought-out SEO copy can be tracked and quantified, giving you insights into your users and enabling you to make more educated business decisions.
Building a brand may be tough, however maintaining a good online reputation is even more vital to preserve a positive brand image.
Well-crafted SEO copy ensures that your online reputation is protected, as you are assured that the content you put out are not only positive, but relevant to searchers.
The digital age is an age of opportunity; however, it is also an age of action and speed. Those who take action first will get ahead of the competition, while the non-action takers will be left in the dust.
There are still plenty of opportunity, as many businesses are still ether deciding whether to get on the bandwagon or in the transition stage.
It is time to take action quickly to build up a solid foundation of SEO copy for your business website and stay ahead of your competition.
Google updates their algorithm often, and one such update sees Google placing more importance on local search.
The Google Venice update, for instance, made it critical for businesses to have a dedicated landing page for each of the locations they service and optimize the page with the relevant keyword combination.
It is obvious the importance of having to optimize your content in order to put out relevant information to your users.
We mentioned previously that SEO copy is trackable and quantifiable as it is a webpage and there’s a ton of data you can collect about your users.
You can track how long the user spent on your page, where do they exit to. This gives a lot of insight into the behavior of your users, which gives you vital signals as to which content is popular, allowing you to tweak your SEO and content strategy instantly.
This is just touching the surface of the amount of data you are able to collect about your users, and in the digital age, knowledge is power.
Well written copy can be quickly tweaked and used in other forms and media, what more if it is search engine optimized content.
You can integrate your marketing mix with SEO copy and spread the SEO goodness over to your social media channels and email marketing with some minor tweaks to adapt the content to the medium.
Let’s face it, people generally do not trust advertisements. We all know that SERPs have advertisements on the top and right of the page, would you rather click on an advertisement or an organic search result?
Our guess would be that the majority of people will click on the organic result instead of the advertisement, and the only way to appear on the top of SERPs is to have good, relevant and optimized content on your website.
Search Engine Optimization or better known as SEO has been in existence since the dawn of search engines.
Some covet it, some think it's all mumbo-jumbo that doesn't work.
The true believers have done something right and experienced positive results with SEO, while the non-believers probably haven't done SEO the right way and thus have a negative experience with it.
What we can tell you is that Search Engine Optimization does indeed work, but it takes a lot of work for it to bring you positive results. SEO is not by any chance a miracle pill which you can swallow and see results the next day.
SEO takes effort to build up, it takes time to manifest, but when it does, then it will be smooth sailing from there on.
Gone are the days where you could just keyword stuff your pages and see traffic pouring in. It also doesn't pay to play the Black Hat game, as once Google penalizes and blacklists your domain, it's as good as dead in cyberspace.
Today, we'd like to share with you 7 simple steps you can follow and implement to increase your traffic through Search Engine Optimization.
Let's get started shall we?
You first start out by listing out a list of keywords you would consider as the main keywords your target audience would most likely use to search for your business.
These are preferably short-tail keywords, usually comprised of 1 - 3 words.
There may be stiff competition for the keywords that you have chosen, accept it as a challenge as SEO is not new, Google is 20 years old now.
However, sometimes you may get lucky and stumble across less competitive niches. If you happen to be in those niches, then congratulations, your SEO journey will be much much easier.
For the rest of us though, we will need to employ some creative strategies to secure streams of traffic, that's what the rest of the steps are for after all.
Now remember, take the stiff competition as a challenge and go after your chosen primary keywords. As your site grows stronger, content targeted at your chosen primary keywords will start to rank.
Let's not get ahead of ourselves yet, for now identify the top 5 primary keywords in your category using the following guidelines:
You used to be able to use the FREE Google Keywords Planner in Google Adwords to get search volume data. However Google has reduced the accuracy of its estimates over time, thus making the data inaccurate these days. Which is why we recommend to use an SEO keyword research tool such as SEO Tester Online's Keyword Explorer tool.
Our screenshot above shows the keywords we picked:
Once you feel your chosen primary keywords describe your business well then move to the next step.
You could spend countless hours or days brainstorming every keyword or you could use your competitors to give you the answers.
By using the Copy Metrics tool in SEO Tester Online, you can identify the keywords that your competitor is ranking for.
Simply click on Copy Metrics to bring up the tool then find your competitor's page which you'd like to research and paste the link in the URL bar. Click analyze and you will be presented with all the topics your competitor is ranking for as seen below.
You can emulate the success of your competitor's page by seeing what keywords they're using and evaluate if they're suitable for your business.
If the list of topics are not enough for you, simply click on the Keywords tab to reveal even more keywords your competitor is using. You get information like the frequency the keyword is used on the page as well.
This is a goldmine of information for search engine optimization
Primary keywords usually have big search volume and match your business really well. This also means you can expect high volumes of quality traffic from them, however it is usually very difficult to rank for them as there's stiff competition.
However, don't fret, that's where the long tail keywords come in. You will use long tail keywords to supplement your primary keywords and bring you traffic. Being a secondary keyword, expect the volume to be lower, but the plus point is that the competition will be lower as well.
You can leverage several long tail keywords to bring you multiple traffic flows.
Using the technique above, create a list of 20 long tail keywords that match the following criteria:
Now if you have 20 long tail keywords for each primary keyword,
5 primary keywords X 20 long tail keywords = 100 keywords
This list will easily give you 100 long tail keywords to work with and will be a great keyword bank for you to refer to later on as you create your first pieces of content.
Up till this point you should have the following ready:
As you filter your list of keywords to just 10, you'll need to keep in mind your topic authority that your site is already ranking for. Make sure they're within the same topical areas as you will be able to rank for those keywords a lot easier since Google already trusts your authority in that topic.
As your authority in the main topics increase, you can slowly expand into other topics, however it will take significantly more time to rank for a new topic.
For the 10 keywords we recommend to pick:
2 Primary Keywords - these are the most ideal keywords that fit your business. Even if they're competitive, over time you will be able to build up your authority for them. The goal right now is to start planting content seeds into Google. These seeds will grow over time to bring you extremely valuable traffic.
4 long tail Keywords for each Primary Keyword - these long tail keywords will supplement your primary keyword. They need to be a good fit for your business and are focused on niche topics that aren't as competitive. These keywords will grow your traffic instantly, helping your primary keywords gain momentum over time.
They need to have similar search volume and also closely related to your primary keywords, preferably these are keywords that you feel excited to write about. That will make the following steps more fun and less tedious to complete.
Alright, now you have 10 keywords to work with, 8 of which should be easier to rank and be able to bring you traffic instantly. Let's move on to the fun stuff.
Now that you have your 10 keywords to work with, it's time to start writing content around those chosen keywords and publish them.
We recommend writing one article for each of your 10 keywords, you will end up with 10 solid pieces of content which you can publish and rank for.
But why 10 pieces of content? I thought two primary keywords meant two articles only?
Well the reason is to increase the odds that Google will at least rank half of those published content. Nothing is certain when it comes to search engines and Google can be quite picky these days.
To increase your odds of success, you should produce content in batches. This way we are certain to get some winners to increase your traffic. Out of the 10 pieces, Google may only rank 5, or 2 or if your content is really good and a bit lucky you may get all 10 pieces of content ranked on Google.
People always say quality over quantity, however for Search Engine Optimization, we need both quality and quantity.
Now don't sweat your pants just yet, you don't need to produce all 10 pieces all at once. In fact you can drip them out over time, we recommend 1 piece per week to keep it consistent.
If you're feeling all pumped up and can push harder, feel free to pump out as many pieces as your time permits.
Here are some on-page SEO tips that you may want to take note of:
Once you have published all 10 articles, give each piece about 2 to 3 months time to get ranked. Search engine optimization is a game of time, be patient and don't panic if it takes a bit longer than expected. If you're lucky you may see results as early as 30 days!
With a good batch of content like this, we hope to see at least 50% of the content get ranked on the first page of Google by the end of the third month. That would be a good indication that you're on track and that our strategy is working.
Rinse and repeat the above steps, keep building more content around your list of 5 primary keywords and 100 long tail keywords. Over time as you build more content, expanding topic by topic, you are guaranteed to see your traffic increase.
Alright, you've published your first 10 articles, now what? Search engine optimization is an on-going process that brings you long term results. Nothing will continue to bring you results if you stop working on it, just as how you need to eat to function, the SEO machine needs to be fed with quality content constantly to bring you results continuously.
For a start you can look at publishing one article per week, you should be accustomed to this schedule after the initial 10 you churned out earlier.
As you get better at keyword research and writing, you may consider to increase your output to two articles per week and continue from there. If you are able to churn out an article a day then you are guaranteed to dominate your niche.
Now remember, keep producing content consistently on a weekly basis, and up the output as and when you are able to. The faster you put out quality content, the faster you will see results.
Finally we've come to the final step of this SEO guide. Sure you've put out quality content on a consistent basis, search engines are picking up your keywords and serving your pages on the SERPs. This process may be a bit slow, how can you amp up the process so that you are able to get results faster?
As with anything, be it a product, service, business or even an article, you will need to promote it in order to get even better results. Shove the 'Build it and they will come' mentality out the window.
There are over a billion websites on the internet, and as Neil Patel puts it, that would average to 7 websites per person, which is way too many for comfort.
The amount of content available online today is just overwhelming, what are the chances of your content getting through to someone if it was not promoted? In fact, what are the chances of someone to use the keyword you selected to search on Google?
Well we can know this from the search volume naturally, but what are the chances of said person clicking on your content over a competitors? The odds are usually stacked against us, unless you are as famous as Neil Patel or Gary Vaynerchuk.
The natural solution to this is to promote your content on all of your available media channels, it could be social media, your email list, or simply through paid advertising.
We recommend you start with the FREE channels, social media networks such as Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter are great platforms to promote your content. You could even use Instagram if you're good at creating great visuals for your content.
Next is your email list, if you have one, consider sending your subscribers an update every time you publish a new article. At the end of the month you can send a newsletter that compiles the updates of the month to remind them of your great content.
If you have the budget, then you may consider using paid advertising, but then it would defeat the purpose of doing search engine optimization in the first place. It can however get you instant results.
The key is to continue to promote your content over at least six months, don't just share your content on social media once and forget about it. Reshare it every two weeks or every month, nobody will remember that it was shared before, and with the amount of content on social media, it may take you a few shares to reach that single person.
Unless your content is time sensitive, we highly recommend you to reshare your content as many times as possible, but don't post the same content every hour, that would make you look desperate and have a severe lack of original content.
We recommend SEO Tester Online as the tool of choice to do your search engine optimization research work.
It is one of the best looking tools out there and is simple to use, plus it gives you a ton of useful data.
We did a review of the tool recently, you may checkout our SEO Tester Online review to learn more about it's other cool features and functions.
You can also check out their official website for more details, but if you do decide to subscribe to the tool, we have a an ongoing partnership with SEO Tester Online that grants users who purchase through us a 20% discount off the shelf price for the first year which we are happy to give to our readers. Just contact us via our contact page and ask for the discount and we would be happy to set it up for you.
We hope you learned something from this guide and are ready to start your SEO journey, if you need any help in SEO, Web Design or Digital Marketing in general be sure to contact us for a FREE consultation and find out how we can help your business out. Until the next one.
Living in the Digital Age is a blessing for most of us, especially the small businesses as it gives the little guy a fighting chance against the Goliaths in the industry. Every business needs a website today, but sadly not every business has one yet, those who resist the digital wave are destined to slowly fade into obscurity.
The digital savvy businesses with a proper website have another challenge - bringing traffic to said site. You see, a website is like a brick and mortar store, and to much popularity, no, the old adage of build it and they will come sadly does not apply to websites as much as physical shops.
Websites are virtual entities, existing in digital space, unseen by the naked eye as you stroll the streets or shop in a mall. As such, if you build it and leave it, then most certainly your website will not have much traffic.
How does one bring traffic to their website then? The fastest and easiest would be to put out ads, there are plenty of options today, ranging from search engine ads such as Google Ads to ads on social media such as Facebook Ads. You see instant results, but they disappear as soon as you stop pumping money into your ad campaign.
Budgets are always limited for any business, what more if you're a small business thriving in today's economy. As such paid ads are definitely not a long term solution.
Fret not, there's a long term and dare I say Evergreen method which is much more economical and will continue to bring results for you long after your ad budget runs out. What's this magical solution you ask? SEO and Content Marketing, but that is better left for another article, as today we will be introducing you to an SEO Tool which is able to help you achieve Evergreen success.
This tool is SEO Tester Online (STO). Now let's dive into how this tool can help you achieve success in the long term.
After logging in to SEO Tester Online, you are greeted with the Dashboard. This page summarizes the tools available to you as well as the number of credits you have left for the month.
As SEO Tester Online runs on a credit system, every SEO Spider deployed will deplete the number of pages and exports you have in total. A popular item in SEO Tester Online is the White Label reports (coming soon in June) where you can provide SEO Audit Reports to clients and prospects using your own branding.
At the bottom of the page are four boxes which describes the functions for each tool in the SEO Tester Online toolset.
That's all for the Dashboard, it's clean, and simple to understand, use of colors are pleasant and makes the UI look stylish.
Let's move on to the next tool - SEO Checker.
The SEO Checker as described on the dashboard is as below:
The online SEO analysis tool for a web page.
Find the SEO errors and solve them to improve your positiong.
As in the description, this tool allows you to analyse the SEO of a single webpage. You can analyse your own page, or a competitor page and find out what they're doing right and improve your own SEO.
Next we look at the results pages for the SEO Checker tool. Here we have the Overview page which shows an overall SEO score as how STO sees it. The SEO score comprises of 5 main areas, namely Basic, Content, Web Performance, Mobile Performance and Social.
There's also a rendering of the checked page in both desktop and mobile views to make sure you have the correct page checked. You may also opt to download the report as a PDF document.
In the next page, we have the Basic area of the analysis. The major items analysed here are:
There are tips for each item which explains in detail what they are their purpose, best practices and how to improve and add any missing item to your web page. Scores are given based on a total of 100 points.
Next we have Content, which basically analyses the content on your page. The analysed items are as below:
This section even shows you the number of words you have on the page. Again there are detailed explanations and tips on how you can fix the issues reported in this area of the SEO analysis.
The next area in the report is Speed. How fast is your website? Why is it slow? What's the cause? You can find out from this section of the report where a number of speed hogs are listed as below:
As we can see, some usual suspects such as minification and compression are present. If you are running a WordPress website then most of these items can be fixed by installing a caching plugin. There are many FREE caching plugins for WordPress, take your pick, we're personally tried WP Fastest Cache, Cache Enabler and Autoptimize.
The last section in the report is Social. We all know the importance of social media in marketing today, as such you would want to make sure pages shared on social media are represented correctly. You can do that by entering the information and image you want to appear when someone shares your link on social media.
There are essentially two items you need to take note of here:
The report also checks if you have a social plugin installed, possibly to make it easier for visitors to share your pages and also a Facebook popularity score.
Those are all 4 areas in the report, go through each item thoroughly and very soon your website will start ranking for your targeted keywords.
The next tool in STO is SEO Spider. Similar as the SEO Checker tool, but the SEO Spider will crawl your entire website and provide you with an overview report much the same as what SEO Checker provided.
The areas in the report are the same, as such we will not mention them again here. You can also enter your competitor's website and analyze their SEO. Who knows, you could learn a thing or two from your competitors.
The next tool we're going to look at is the Keyword Explorer. A powerful tool which you can use to check the relevance of your intended keyword. You can also compare a few keywords against each other. The number of keywords you can compare simultaneously depends on the plan you have, which ranges from 3 to 5.
As seen in the above screenshot, we are comparing three keywords whereby a slew of information is presented. You can see at one glance the Search Volume for each keyword, the Difficulty to rank for, Cost per Click (CPC) for each keyword and the Competition for each keyword.
The graph below shows us the interest over time for each keyword, which can show us the trends for whatever keyword we are exploring for. We can also change the country, which is good for local SEO, as we will get the exact stats for the country selected.
There's a nifty feature where we can get Suggestions for other long tail keywords for the keywords we're exploring for now. This is a powerful tool in the hands of an experienced search engine optimizer.
An interesting addition to the toolset of STO is the SEO Editor. It's much like a souped up word processor which tracks SEO related elements such as your Title tags, frequency of keywords used in the copy.
As you can see in the above screenshot, it has all the basic word processing functions as well as a right panel which displays the number of words, keywords, secondary keywords etc. This will aid you when you are writing content for your website or blog.
The downside of this tool is that it doesn't allow you to save multiple articles, and you can only save the latest copy you are working on. Once it's done you can choose to export it as a Word or PDF document. You can also import documents to the tool or use the Wizard which will guide you through.
Though not as advanced as a dedicated SEO Editing software such as WebTextTool, but it sure is a nice addition for beginners in SEO.
The final tool on the list is Copy Metrics. A relatively new tool to the STO suite, you can analyze any webpage's content. It's fairly simple to use, just key in the page which you want to analyze it's copy or if you have the text you can opt to directly paste the text in the Text tab. Choose the country you want the tool to analyze for, click Analyze and the results will be shown in a while.
Here's an example of how the results look like. The Metrics tab shows you overview information such as Text Difficulty, which is a measurement weighted with the importance of keywords used. Views Monthly, Buy Intent and some Stats which includes Reading Time, Average CPC and Total Words.
The tool also lists out the Main Topic, which essentially tells you what topic this article is most likely going to be related to by search engines based on the keywords used.
The Topic tab shows a list of Keywords, Search Volume, CPC, Keyword Density in the article and Keyword Difficulty scores. There are also quick links you can use to analyze any keyword with the Keyword Explorer and open a search page in Google.
The third tab is the Keywords tab, which also shows the list of keywords used in the article. The only difference here is that it shows how frequent each keyword appears in the article and how many words it is comprised of.
Lastly, you have the option to change the language of the UI between English and Italian.
This concludes our review of the SEO Tester Online SAAS (Software as a Service), the founders of SEO Tester Online have some new features lined-up and will be releasing new tools later down their roadmap. Checkout the SEO Tester Online roadmap.
Previously we did a comparison between the PDF report generated by SEO Tester Online and SERanking which you can checkout as well to find out how the generated report looks like.
If you'd like to get SEO Tester Online for yourself, there's an awesome Lifetime deal on Pitchground at the moment
This is a great tool if you're in the market for an SEO tool, we highly recommend you sign up for SEO Tester Online, they do offer a trial account if you would like to test it out first.
If you'd like to get SEO Tester Online for yourself, there's an awesome Lifetime deal on Pitchground at the moment, be sure to grab it as soon as possible as it is a limited time deal.
You can also learn more about SEO Copywriting to better understand the importance of SEO in Digital Marketing today.
Do share the article if you found it to be useful, until the next one.
Search Engine Optimization or better known as SEO is a vital and essential step for any website if you intend to rank high in search engines, not just Google, but any available search engine out there.
The task of optimizing one's site is daunting and strikes fear to many website owners. Many people don't even know where to begin. Question such as what keywords do I optimize for, are meta tags still important, how do I know my ranking and many more come to mind when SEO is mentioned.
As with any craft, you need proper tools in order to build something, a chef needs his cooking utensils to slice, dice and finally cook up a great meal, a plumber can't fix your leaky pipes without his trusty toolbox, and of course a Search Engine Optimizer/Webmaster/Digital Marketer or whatever you call us can't optimize your website without the proper digital tools.
Today we will be looking at two SEO audit reports generated by two noteworthy SAAS SEO Tools. The contenders are SERanking and SEO Tester Online (STO), both are great tools with their fair share of strengths and weaknesses.
The intention of this comparison is not to put one down while raising the other, it is merely to provide you with the knowledge to make a choice if you are considering either tool. We also hope that this comparison serves to inform the founders of both tools and hopefully the feedback given here will be taken positively and improvements be made to their existing tool.
Now without going-on and on for too long, let's dive into the first SEO audit report by SERanking. We'll start with the cover page:
SERanking gets started straightaway on the get-go by providing an overview of the number of Important Fixes, Semi-Important Fixes, number of Crawled Pages, and number of Passed Checks. Date of creation of the report is also visible on the front page.
The bottom of the page shows you some ranking information for your domain such as the MOZ DA (Domain Authority), Alexa Ranking, number of Backlinks. There's also information on the number of pages indexed by the top three search engines - Google, Bing and Yahoo!. Finally there's some information on your domain expiration date, Web Archive Age and Server Location.
Also note that the report is white labeled to show the name of your agency/company, making this report branded. This is important for Digital Marketing Agencies as they can offer their clients the reports in their own brand.
Moving on we have a website Health Check. The areas checked in this area are as below:
WWW Redirect checks whether your website runs with www or without www in order to avoid duplicate content. There's also some instructions on how you can fix this issue.
URL Rewrite makes sure your website URLs are rewritten to be SEO friendly which is clean and descriptive of the contents on the page.
HTTPS is important for Google rankings now and as such it is important to check if your site Redirects HTTP traffic to HTTPS or not. If you get a green tick then there's nothing more you need to do.
Robots.txt is a file in the root of your website that gives instructions to search engine robots, directing them to index or not index specified pages or preventing certain pages from getting indexed. It also contains links to the XML sitemap file that will help search engine crawlers to discover and index the maximum number of the website's pages.
XML Sitemaps are important for getting your web pages indexed on search engines. It helps search engines crawl your site easily and intelligently. It is highly recommended that you submit your sitemaps to major search engines as soon as possible to quickly get your pages indexed.
The next section of the report is on Page Analysis. Every page of your website will be scanned and you will get to know about pages with too long URLs, blocked robots.txt, oversized text size , Noindex meta tags, rel="canonical", rel="alternate", meta refresh redirect etc.
What we like about this report is that it lists out every single page that has an issue. This makes it easy to identify the pages that need fixing.
Next up with have Meta Analysis. Meta tags may not be as important as they used to be but they are still essential and play a role in ranking your web pages high in search engines.
Here you'll get to know whether your titles, descriptions are too long, too short, or whether they're outright missing. Meta titles should be between 10 - 70 characters while Meta Descriptions should be between 50 - 320 characters. Be sure to add in important keywords in both the title and description. You should also avoid using the same title and description for multiple pages or you will get a warning here.
Moving on we have Content Analysis. Content is King and we should make sure our King has all the important keywords, heading tags and most important of all that it is not duplicate content.
In this section you will see which pages with a low word count of below 250 words, pages without H1 tag, duplicate H1 tag, duplicate H2 tag, empty H2 tag or are any of the H1 and H2 tags too long.
The issues here should be fairly easy to fix without additional instructions.
Link Analysis is up next. Here you will learn of issues about your internal and external links. Some issues such as having more than 100 outgoing links, excessive number of redirects, internal and external links with missing anchor text, number of links with 'nofollow', 'dofollow' and more.
The next section of the report talks about Image Analysis. Here you can find out which pages have images which are missing ALT Text. Image ALT Text is important to describe the image in no more than 7 words and also raise SEO rankings.
The last section of the report talks about Usability and Technologies and lists items such as Favicon, Custom 404 Page, W3C Validation, Safe Browsing as well as Website Speed. There are some explanations for each item and links to external resources related to each item, but again there are no instructions on how to say achieve a good website speed or how to add a Favicon.
Next we will take a look at the generated report by SEO Tester Online, another great SEO Tool with an Italian background.
The SEO Audit Report generated by STO at first glance looks more professional with a nicely designed cover page listing the URL of the website the report is for as well as the date of the report. As of this writing there is no Whitelabel option yet, but word is you will be able to customize the generated reports and include your own company name and logo in June 2019. We are certainly looking forward to that feature.
We start off with a summary page with an overall SEO score and the types of tests or Exams as is used in this report that are Optimized, To Improve and Check Again. One look and you know how many issues are there which you need to work on. The issues are further broken down into five main areas, namely Base, Structure, Content, Duplicated and Social. This let's you know the major area which your website is lacking in.
The first area of the report is the Base, and it covers mainly the meta tags, meta descriptions with the addition of Google Snippets thrown in the mix. Clear tips and what you need to do to solve the issue is given in the What to Solve section of the page. This is a plus for the STO report, however the downside is that it doesn't list out the pages which are having said issues.
The report continues with the other meta tags, on this page it tells you whether your meta title tag is missing and how you can add it, as well as best practices for writing a meta title for your page.
Next we have more information on whether the meta titles are too long and truncated (>70 characters), are the meta descriptions too long and truncated (>300 characters). It tells us the number of pages with said issues, and would be even better if the pages affected were listed out as well.
Moving on the report continues with more meta tag checks. On this page it tells you if your meta descriptions are too short (<70 characters) and also checks for the Hreflang tag. Hreflang tag is important for multi-language sites where it serves translated content to targeted users in certain regions, if your site is primarily in English then it would be of little consequence.
The next meta tag on the report is X-Default, which is used to signal search engines that the specified page doesn't target any specific language or locale and is the default page when no other page is better suited.
Next up with Canonical, which was also present in the SERanking report above. Now the fact that this attribute is mentioned in both reports means that it is an important attribute you should take note of.
Now what this tag does is to tell search engines that your content is the original and that you'd prefer your page URL to be displayed in search results. Of course this only applies if there are duplicate publications of your content, in which case you would get the ranking, leads and traffic instead of the copycat.
We move on to the next section of the report, the Structure section. The first item in this section is Compression, if you have compression enabled on your website you're all good. If you're on WordPress you can turn on compressions using caching plugins such as WP Fastest Cache.
Alternatively, gzip compression can be enabled on your webserver as mentioned in the report under recommendations.
The next item is Robots.txt, which is also present in the SERanking SEO audit report above. A robots.txt file is a text file in the root of your site which instructs search engine crawler bots on what to do when they reach your website. You can instruct them to index the whole site, exclude certain pages, or just index specific pages.
We move on to the next item in this section - Sitemaps. A sitemap file is a file that lists all the web pages in a structured manner and guides search engine's crawlers to index your site content in a more intelligent way.
Coming up with have Text/Code Ratio, which is kind of new to us. Basically what it's checking is the amount of text content you have on your page relative to the amount of code.
Seeing that content is King, it is advised that you have more long form content to allow search engines to index your pages as it deems it interesting compared to a page full of just code and little content.
The next item on this page is HTTPS migration. Following the recent Google update, HTTPS has been made an essential requirement to get your site indexed and listed on it's results pages. As Google looks to serve websites that are secure to their users, if you do not have an SSL certificate to secure your site today, you could be losing out on those rankings.
You can easily get free SSL certificates from majority of webhosts today, so this shouldn't be a cause for concern.
Next we look at Image Optimization, well basically in this report it's checking to see if you have alt tags for all your images. An alt tag is an attribute used to describe the contents of an image, a short description of what your image depicts.
If for any reason your image does not load on your site, the text in your alt attribute will be displayed on the page instead, giving context to your content.
The following page continues with the at attribute, checking to see if it's too long (>100 characters).
The next item is 404 errors or pages which are not found, possibly cause you deleted them or totally revamped your website.
Moving on to the next section, the Content section, where the report talks all about your content as did the SERAnking SEO audit report above.
First up is Content Level, which again looks at the length of content of each of your pages. Content below 400 words are considered too short, so you'd be wise to add-on to those pages with short content.
The report also looks at H1 and H2 tags, whether they are too long or oversized (>70 characters), are they missing, and are there multiple H1 tags. Take note that there should ever only be ONE H1 tag on each page. You can have multiple H2 tags, but there can only be one H1 tag.
Next up is the Duplicated section. We start off with Duplicated Pages, which checks to see if you have duplicated content across your site. Unless you're the type who copies and pastes your own content across multiple pages, you should pass this test easily.
Since it is the Duplicated section of the report, the rest of the items are checking for Duplicated Titles, Meta Descriptions, H1, H2. Again if you write original content for each page, these checks should be a breeze to pass.
The final section of the report is the most interesting, the Social section. We've all shared links to our blog posts on social media before, now sometimes the preview image pulled into the post is fine, but other times it's just not what we wanted to use for our post. Ever wondered how that works and whether you could control it?
The answer is yes, and you need to ensure your Open Graph protocol is enabled. Open Graph is used on Facebook, and what it does is it makes any web page into a rich object in a social graph. Basically you get to determine what preview image shows up, what text appears, you have full control over your post in other words.
There are various attributes in the Open Graph and each test will check if you have it all covered. Go back in to fix it if there's something missing.
Twitter uses it's own protocol called the Twittercard, but it functions the same, allowing you to attach rich photos, videos, and media experiences to Tweets. Now every time you tweet a link back to your blog, the Twitter Card will show a nice preview of your content, driving more engagement and traffic back to your site.
Just as the Open Graph, Twitter Cards have various attributes you need to fill up. So get that done and you'll get a perfect score.
This brings us to the end of this SEO Audit Report comparison. I would say both reports were informative and had it's strengths and weaknesses.
The SERanking SEO Audit Report shined in the area where it specifically lists out each problematic page, making it easy for SEOs to quickly identify which pages they need to work on. However it did not have the level of tips and explanations that the SEO Tester Online SEO Audit Report provided.
On the flip side, the STO report could have done better if it included a list of the problematic pages, in which case it would have made the report perfect to work with. Perhaps in a future version, this could be added.
If you'd like to checkout each of the SEO tools mentioned above then follow the links below:
On a side note, there's a Life Time Deal for SEO Tester Online running on Pitchground at the moment. Grab it if you intend to do SEO on your own, if not you could contact us and we'd be happy to get on a call with you.
Do contact us directly if you have any questions about SEO, we would be happy to help out.
We hope you found this article useful, and we'll see you in the next one.