SEO Audits Don’t Come From Free Tools
Articles,  Blog

SEO Audits Don’t Come From Free Tools


Hello, this is John Locke, and today i
want to talk with you about why SEO audits from free tools are not that
great. So, one of the misconceptions that I run into a lot, especially with people
who have tried to do their own SEO in the past, is about SEO audits. What are they?
What do they actually entail? The number one source of this confusion: there are a
lot of free, or close to free tools, out there that spit out reports. These are
usually about two pages long. These smaller SEO audits will hit some of the bullet points of SEO. But there’s
a reason why they’re not really SEO audits. They’re more like a quick snapshot
of some top-level things that you should be fixing. Most of the tools that are
free or almost free, they will tell you a couple things that you can find out
really easily just by scanning the page. These SEO audits will look at whether the keyword that
you’re trying to rank for is in the title tag of your homepage.
They might even look at whether you have Schema
markup on your site, or whether your site is loading in less than 10 seconds. (Let’s
hope that it is, because ain’t nobody got time to wait 10 seconds for your page to
load.) But like I’m saying, most of these reports are one, or maybe two pages long.
They merely hit the the top-level bullet points of things that
are easy to scan. [These “quick scans” do not go in depth.] It’s not a big secret but the first thing that we do in every
SEO engagement with a new client is do a full SEO audit of their site, including their
competition, their whole backlink structure, the
content on all their main pages, looking at the keywords that they want to rank
for, and some of the keywords that we think could be generating traffic for
them. Then we look at what’s on Page One of Google for each of those search terms, and
actually try to figure out why those sites are up there. Now, there’s a lot of
things that can be missed in a so-called audit done by free tools, that an
in-depth SEO audit is going to catch. Such as: are you competing against other
smaller local brands? Are you competing against big brands on a national or even
international stage? How many years have you been around compared to everybody
else that you’re trying to beat? What does your site actually look
like? Does your site look rinky-dink, like it’s a small brand? While all the other
players in your space have a large looking brand? How much press coverage do
you get? Are all the players in your space getting tons of press coverage? Do
they have a hundred thousand backlinks? And you only have twenty [back links]? Those are just
some of the things that we look at in in-depth SEO audit, including,
for each individual search term, what is the “searcher intent”? Are they trying
to buy something? Are they trying to research something? Do they just need a
quick answer? Those are things that these free little one-page reports won’t tell
you. It’s very important to do a SEO audit [before developing a SEO strategy]. In fact, it is so important that we
will not do a long term SEO engagement until we do an SEO audit. That’s actually Step
One of our long term SEO campaigns. For some of our clients, we do a standalone
SEO audit, and they can definitely get someone else to fulfill all the stuff
that’s in the checklist. Because we do give them a blueprint of what to do. Now, the
most important thing of a real in-depth SEO audit is there’s going to be some
substance to it. It will be substantially more than two or three pages. Most of the SEO
audits that we end up doing are in the neighborhood of 30 to 50 pages. I
definitely know SEO consultants that work with even larger brands, and their
SEO audits can be hundreds of pages long. When you’re actually getting someone to do an
in-depth SEO audit of all the aspects of your site, not just a one page drive-by,
that takes three minutes to do, the difference is like night and day. What we do, and what I know
a lot of people do with these SEO audits, is the audit becomes the blueprint for the
next six months to one year of work that we’re going to do. What type of content
needs to be produced to compete with the other people in your vertical? What
improvements do we need to make to the website? What technical SEO issues are we
running into? What type of web address structure do we need to implement on the
site to make it work [siloing]? What type of backlinking strategy do we need to get
in place? Lastly, what things do you need to be doing outside of your website
to build your brand, to where people are searching for your
brand and your products? If you’re finding value from our YouTube channel,
there’s a couple things you can do. One is subscribe to our YouTube channel. We are
growing. We give SEO tips for manufacturing and industrial firms at
least once a week. The other thing that you can do, is if you have an SEO
question that you’d like to see answered, put it down in the comments below, and
then we’ll answer it for you. This is John Locke for Lockedown Design
and SEO. Peace.

One Comment

  • John Locke

    There's a world of difference between so-called "SEO audits" from free tools, or lead-gen widgets, and a human-done, in-depth SEO audit. Auto-generated "SEO audits" are quick scans that barely scratch the surface. In-depth SEO audits done by SEO consultants are dozens of pages long, and go into great detail about what you need to do, and offer insights that automated tools simply cannot come close to.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *