Here is a technical SEO check list – based on a series of articles taken from Wordtracker's best-selling e-book, SEO for Profit e-book - that will help you make sure your site is free from SEO gremlins.
Use the list for new sites and (about once a month) on established sites.
- Create clear, friendly URLs
- Each page should have one URL
- The home page should have one URL
- Make sure you have paginated URLs
- Create an HTML sitemap - for users and search engines
- If necessary, create an XML Sitemap
- Check your use of the meta robots tag
- The Nofollow tag
- Check for broken links (404s)
- Check redirects (302s and 301s)
- Site crawls and indexing
- Robots.txt files - is yours set up correctly?
- Make your own crawl report and check:
- Google SERPs sitelinks
- Google geographic setting
- Google preferred domain
- Page indexing speed
- Page title tags
- Page description tags
- Instant previews
- Make sure your pages load quickly
- How to work with AJAX pages’ URLs
- Minimize ViewState on ASP.net platforms
- Working with frames
- Ensure you comply with W3C validated CSS and HTML
- Rich snippets and microformats
- Help with setting up Ecommerce tracking in Google Analytics
- Setting up Goals in Google Analytics
- Tracking external promotions
- Tracking internal promotions
- Tracking outbound links with Event tracking
- Tracking social sharing
Download your own copy
You can download a copy of this spreadsheet here: http://bit.ly/KfIyMQ
Wordtracker's site audit tool will help you track most of the problems you see here. If you don't have a Wordtracker subscription, it will take longer, but you could add these tasks to a spreadsheet and check them manually.
Armed with your SEO audit and a little knowledge, it should be possible to free your site from SEO gremlins. Leaving you free to concentrate on the important task of promoting your site.
For more free technical SEO information, see Mark Nunney's series of four articles about:
Read more in “SEO for Profit'
If you've found this article helpful, you should check out Mark Nunney's 329-page ebook, “SEO for Profit”.
This intuitive PDF guide combines real-world examples, screenshots and checklists to help you quickly grasp the key concepts of SEO and apply them to your own website. The book explains what makes search engines like Google really tick — and how you can optimize your site to gain their favor. You'll learn:
- All about Google's Panda update — and what it means for you
- How much time and money you should really be investing in SEO
- The SEO obstacles you're likely to face — and how to surmount them
- The secrets to creating quality content (lots of it)
- The ins and outs of effective link building
To learn more about “SEO for Profit” simply click on the button below:
About Mark Nunney
Mark Nunney has been a successful professional SEO since 2000. He is CEO of The Website Marketing Company and he publishes Leadership & Management Review from ThinkingManagers.com, the business management website.
Mark wrote SEO for Profit, Wordtracker Masterclass: Keyword Research book and co-wrote Wordtracker Masterclass: Link Building with Ken McGaffin. He is also the founder and project manager of Wordtracker Strategizer.