*Updated on 9/7/2023
An SEO audit is very similar to a personal health and wellness check. A health check ensures your system and internal processes are in top shape. Screenings and checks can find problems early so you can act with effective treatments. An SEO audit works much in the same way in that it will reveal issues that can negatively affect your website's authority.
Once you receive the results of your audit, you can immediately act to remedy errors that prevent your site from ranking well. An SEO audit also shows you areas that may be doing okay and offers ways to become even stronger.
What is an Enterprise SEO Audit?
Enterprise SEO refers to audits done for large and complex websites with thousands, even millions, of URLs. As you would imagine, an enterprise SEO audit can be a complex undertaking. An enterprise SEO has little to do with the size of the company. A business with less than 100 employees could have a website with thousands, even hundreds of thousands of pages.
Types of SEO Audits
There are different types of SEO audits that address different aspects of your website. If you have a business that depends on local traffic, a local SEO audit will identify where your site can improve rankings for your local service. Alternatively, your enterprise SEO audit will contain many different features.
Duplicate content is a common issue on websites. Semrush found that over 50% of websites have duplicate content or content that shows up on two or more URLs. This includes content on your company's website or someone who copied your webpage and placed it on their site (better known as plagiarism). Duplicate content on a website can be a big concern.
Copied content that doesn't provide value will be considered a low-quality page by Google. Google has Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines to distinguish between the levels of duplicate content and how Google will penalize your domain.
Additional types of audits focus on the following:
- Performance assessments
- Recovery penalties, forensic issues, etc.
- Information architecture
- Technical SEO
- Inbound links
- Keyword cannibalization
- Local SEO
- On-page and off-page SEO audit
At this point, you may be asking what type of audit makes sense for my business. Will an enterprise audit encompass everything? This is getting confusing! When it comes to SEO, there is no "one-size-fits-all" strategy or audit remediation – but that’s OK! Working with a professional SEO team will get you a customized audit that's suited for your business and website.
What to Expect with an Enterprise SEO Audit
As a stakeholder, you may not know where to begin. A great SEO specialist will help draw out your concerns and goals. First, is an analysis of your website including interviews and meetings with key stakeholders to discuss high-level concerns and issues. A SEO specialist will nail down goals for the client. Enterprise-level SEO tools will be used to gather data to give an overview of issues and concerns. It may come to be that you need more emphasis on local SEO audits over a deep dive into recovery penalties or a number of other scenarios.
Who is Involved in an Enterprise SEO Audit?
A comprehensive SEO audit will analyze your website across multiple areas and involve multiple departments including digital marketers, content writers, site architects, and more.
What is Included in an Enterprise SEO Audit?
You can expect to see some of these areas covered in an enterprise SEO audit:
A comprehensive competitor analysis is a critical component of an enterprise SEO audit as it empowers you with valuable insights to optimize your efforts, refine your strategies, and outperform your competition in the online marketplace. It helps identify both direct and indirect competitors, providing a clear understanding of the competitive landscape. This knowledge is essential for strategic decision-making.
Analyzing competitors' SEO strategies offers valuable insights into their online performance. By comparing factors such as organic search rankings, traffic sources, keyword targeting, content strategies, and backlink profiles, businesses can evaluate their own SEO effectiveness and identify areas for improvement.
Competitor analysis also uncovers keyword opportunities by studying successful keyword strategies employed by competitors. This enables businesses to refine their own keyword targeting, attracting relevant organic traffic. Additionally, by comparing competitors’ content, it sheds light on engaging content types, topics, and audience engagement levels. This information aids in refining content strategies to create more compelling and competitive content.
Understanding competitors' link-building tactics helps in building a strong backlink profile. By identifying high-quality websites linking to competitors, businesses can explore similar opportunities to enhance their website's authority and visibility.
Lastly, competitor analysis keeps businesses updated on industry trends, emerging competitors, and new strategies. By monitoring competitors' activities, organizations can adapt their SEO approach to maintain a competitive edge.
Are you staying ahead of your competition? The Americaneagle.com competitor analysis helps you uncover any gaps in your strategy, find your competitive edge, and discover new ways to grow your business and gain the upper hand. Sign up for our competitor analysis today.
Keyword Targeting and Use
The keywords you focus on play a vital role in your SEO strategy. When conducting an enterprise SEO audit, it is crucial to ensure that you are targeting keywords that attract qualified leads to your website. The keywords you choose should be terms that qualified leads commonly search for when seeking information about your industry, company, products, or services. Additionally, these keywords should have a significant search volume, indicating the number of people searching for those specific terms.
Because you have an enterprise-level website, your emphasis will likely be on short-tail keywords, which are more general and consist of only a few words. While ranking for these keywords may be more challenging, they have the potential to drive a substantial amount of qualified traffic to your site.
In your enterprise SEO audit checklist, it is essential to verify that you are utilizing keywords appropriately throughout your website. Ensure that you are not missing out on any keyword opportunities, but also avoid overloading your content with keywords in an unnatural manner.
Include your target keyword in the body content of your pages, preferably with multiple instances of the target keyword, including at least one within the first 100 words of the content. It is also beneficial to check that your pages incorporate related keywords.
The URLs of your web pages play a crucial role in conveying the context of your page to both search engines and users. Google utilizes URLs to determine the placement of your page in search results.
To ensure that your URLs are optimized for SEO, consider the following guidelines:
- Ensure that your URLs accurately reflect the content of the respective page. Avoid default URLs that often consist of random combinations of letters and numbers.
- Incorporate the primary keyword you intend to rank for within your URL.
- Keep your URLs concise, ideally consisting of no more than five words.
- Use hyphens to separate words in your URLs. Avoid utilizing any other special characters.
- Utilize only lowercase letters in your URLs.
By adhering to these practices, you can enhance the SEO-friendliness of your URLs and improve their effectiveness in search engine rankings.
Headings are key when it comes to structuring your content and providing descriptions of the page's contents. The H1 tag serves as the primary heading and functions similarly to the title, summarizing the main topic of the page. Unlike the title, however, the H1 tag is displayed on the actual page rather than on search engine results pages (SERPs). Additionally, it is advisable to incorporate H2s, H3s, H4s, and other header tags to effectively organize your content.
As part of an enterprise SEO audit, it is essential to ensure that every page includes an H1 tag, and optionally, other relevant heading tags. While including keywords in your headings is beneficial for optimization, it is equally important to prioritize readability and user experience.
Title Tags and Meta Description Tags
Title tags serve as identifiers for the titles of your pages. They convey to search engines and users the purpose of your page and are prominently displayed on search engine results pages (SERPs). It is essential to ensure that each page on your website has a distinct title tag that succinctly and accurately describes the content of the respective page. Your title tag should be concise, preferably under 60 characters, and include the target keyword relevant to the page.
Meta descriptions are brief descriptions of your page’s content that appear on SERPs and help convince users to click through to your page. Your meta descriptions help users and search engines understand your page’s content. Google also sometimes uses them for featured snippets.
Each page on your site should have a unique meta description that briefly describes what the page is about. Your descriptions should be no more than 155 characters long and contain your target keyword.
The cornerstone of any website lies in its high-quality content, which plays a vital role in achieving good rankings. Ensure that each page's content is distinctive and valuable to the visitors.
In case you come across a page that lacks value, take the necessary steps to either eliminate it or enhance it to make it more beneficial for your target audience. If you discover duplicate content on your website, it is advisable to either remove it entirely or utilize canonical tags to indicate the original version of the page.
The purpose of robots.txt files is to communicate to search engine crawlers which pages and files they are allowed or not allowed to request from your website.
During your enterprise SEO audit, it is important to verify and review your site's robots.txt file to ensure that it is providing accurate information to Google. If, by mistake, you instruct Google not to crawl a specific page in your robots.txt file, it can result in that page being excluded from search results.
It is worth noting that relying solely on robots.txt files is not a dependable method to prevent pages containing sensitive information from appearing in Google's search results. Instead, it is recommended to utilize alternative measures such as implementing a “noindex” directive or applying password protection for these specific pages.
The number and quality of links pointing to your website have a substantial impact on its search engine rankings.
A robust backlink profile can be achieved by acquiring links from diverse domains and authoritative sources. The greater the number of links you have from unique domains and the higher the authority of those domains, the stronger your backlink profile becomes. This, in turn, can result in improved rankings for your site.
An internal linking strategy is vital for SEO as it helps Google find, index, and understand all of the pages on your site. Using them strategically helps send page authority (also known as PageRank) to important pages.
During an enterprise SEO audit, the internal linking structure of a website is assessed to determine the proper distribution of the page authority. Internal links are verified to ensure they’re relevant, meaning they’re keyword-rich and descriptive, and helpful for users. Broken internal links are also examined and fixed.
A slow-loading website results in a negative user experience, and a significant majority of users, around 83%, anticipate web pages to load within three seconds or less. Failing to meet this expectation may cause them to abandon your website in favor of a faster alternative.
Given this, Google considers page speed as a crucial element in determining rankings. Consequently, a slow-performing website can negatively impact your search engine rankings.
To assess your website's page speed, you can utilize Google's PageSpeed Insights Tool. These tools provide valuable insights into the loading speed of your web pages, allowing you to identify areas for improvement and optimize your website's performance.
Mobile optimization is a key SEO ranking factor. Now more than ever, it’s important to ensure that websites are responsive, meaning that it automatically adjusts to fit the screen size of the device it’s being viewed on. Mobile optimization also includes testing the website’s loading speed on mobile devices and optimizing it for faster load times. Mobile-friendly navigation and user-interface elements are checked as well.
Structured Data Markup
Structured data markup is a machine-readable representation of your product data directly on your site which can be used to share product data with Google Merchant Center. That markup is then added to your HTML which helps Google and other search engines understand process your content reliably.
In an enterprise SEO audit, experts verify the presence of your structured data markup and check if it’s implemented correctly and follows the guidelines set by search engines. This can be tested with validator.schema.org or Google’s Rich Results Test tool. It’s critical to resolve any errors or warnings.
The image optimization assessment confirms that images are optimized for size and format to reduce page load times. It checks for proper image file naming conventions and ensures that images have descriptive alt text for accessibility and SEO purposes.
As with any component of a website, security is vital for SEO. The enterprise SEO audit confirms that your website has an SSL certificate and is properly configured. It also checks for any security vulnerabilities or risks.
User Experience (UX)
A positive user experience leads to loyal customers, which is why it’s so important to continuously evaluate your site’s UX. The enterprise SEO audit evaluates ease of navigation, design, and layout, and checks for any elements that are potentially hindering the user experience, such as pop-ups or intrusive ads. Accessibility and ensuring your site is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities, is also a major component of evaluating UX.
Social Media Integration
An enterprise SEO audit verifies that your website is integrated with relevant social media profiles, like LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, and more. The level of engagement, including likes, shares, and comments, is assessed as well as consistency in branding and messaging across social media profiles.
If your website includes video, ensuring they are optimized will help boost search rankings. Videos should be correctly optimized for search with relevant file names, descriptions, and transcripts. Check for proper video hosting and embedding practices. Determine whether the videos are hosted on a dedicated video hosting platform (e.g., YouTube, Vimeo, Wistia) or self-hosted on the website's server. Using a dedicated video hosting platform can offer better performance, scalability, and features compared to self-hosting. Keep in mind that YouTube may not be the best choice for enterprise-level businesses.
If your website targets multiple countries or languages, this step verifies the proper implementation of hreflang tags, which tells search engines what language is used on a specific page so the search engine can serve results in that language. Content should be optimized for the specific language and culture your targeting.
Google Analytics and Search Console Integration
During an enterprise SEO audit, experts confirm that your website is properly integrated with Google Analytics and Google Search Console. These tools are crucial for measuring and tracking your users’ behaviors, so any issues in reporting are identified and remediated in this step.
Conversion Rate Optimization
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) improves your marketing return on investment (ROI). As part of an enterprise SEO audit, conversion optimization efforts are assessed, including the effectiveness of call-to-actions (CTAs), landing pages, and overall design of the site. Elements that may hinder conversions, such as confusing navigation or lack of trust signals, are also assessed. Different variations of key pages are identified to test the most effective version.
Content Gap Analysis
A content gap analysis is the process of identifying holes in your website’s existing content. This is done by examining competitor’s content and identifying missing keywords or topics that could align with the various stages of your customers’ journeys. Once the content gap analysis has been completed, recommendations for high-quality content are made to fill the gaps and improve your site’s competitiveness.
E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness)
E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. It’s derived from Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines which is a 168-page document used by human-quality raters to assess the quality of Google’s search results.
An enterprise SEO audit evaluates your website’s demonstration of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness in its content and overall presentation. It also ensures that content is created by qualified experts, well-researched, and accurate. Trust signals, such as secure browsing and clear content information, are verified by E-A-T.
Core Web Vitals
Core Web Vitals are a set of metrics that measure real-world user experience for speed, responsiveness, and visual stability of a web page. When conducting an enterprise SEO audit, your website’s performance is checked against the Core Web Vitals, including Time to First Byte (TTFB), First Contentful Paint (FCP), Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), and Total Blocking Time (TBT). From there, recommendations for improvements and optimizations are provided to help bring the site up to performance standards. Core Web Vitals are monitored over time to ensure consistency performance.
The aforementioned are a few of the crucial aspects to assess during an SEO audit at the enterprise level, although they are not the only ones to consider. As Google considers over 200 ranking factors, there are numerous elements that can influence your rankings. Nonetheless, reviewing the above elements will provide you with a solid starting point.
Enterprise SEO vs. Traditional SEO
It's important to note that these are guidelines, and each website and business will have unique challenges. As stated earlier, a business could have less than a thousand web pages but still, need an enterprise SEO audit due to certain factors. As such and generally speaking, traditional SEO differs from enterprise SEO in key areas, mainly scalability, scope, and approach.
Enterprise SEO FAQs
What are Goals of an SEO Audit?
One of the main goals of an SEO audit is to uncover problems and issues hindering your website from achieving maximum visibility on search engines.
A second goal of an enterprise SEO audit is to find new opportunities for performance growth by optimizing content, metadata, and other areas.
How Often Should I Conduct an Enterprise SEO Audit?
Like many website optimizations, SEO audits aren’t just a “one and done” kind of thing. It’s recommended to audit your website approximately every six months to ensure you’re on track with your goals. Additionally, if you make any significant changes to your website, conducting another SEO audit is suggested.
Do I Need an Enterprise SEO Audit?
Are enterprise SEO tactics right for your business? Enterprise-wide SEO audits are specific for businesses with large page counts, in the hundreds, thousands, and beyond. Every website will need to have an SEO audit of some type as they grow. Just like maintaining your car or your health, having regular checkups through audits will only enhance your website and keep you on top of a competitive market.
Work with Americaneagle.com for an Enterprise SEO Audit
SEO audits can be complex and seem like a daunting task to take on your own. Google updates and algorithms can change, technical terms can be confusing, and knowing which tactics to utilize can be challenging.
At Americaneagle.com, our SEO services help businesses make sense of the complex and build an effective strategy that includes regular SEO audits specific to your business needs. Contact us today to learn more about our SEO services and how we keep your website running like a well-oiled machine.
If you’re not sure where your website stands, schedule a SEO analysis!