What is a website audit?

A website audit involves analyzing your website for technical, user experience, and SEO issues.

Some benefits of this process include finding things that may be:

  • Hindering your website’s traffic potential in organic search;
  • Costing you sales or conversions;
  • Confusing your visitors;
  • Technically unsound

Of course, finding such issues is only half the battle. You then have to fix them. Below we have listed our top 5 easy to check points to start your audit. There are many other checks worth doing which go deeper into the understanding of SEO and the technical aspects of your website design and maintenance. Making sure that you check these first five steps will be a good base for any further investigations.

1. Check your design

Design is important. Nobody is going to trust a website that was designed in 1995.

As a general rule of thumb, it’s worth redesigning your website every 4–5 years—or at least making a few significant design updates to keep things fresh.

But this isn’t just about making things pretty or keeping up with current trends. There are quite a few things that contribute to poor website “design.”

  • Popups
  • Illegible text
  • Unclear calls to action
  • Dated graphics
  • Conflicting messages and labelling for example using both “Contact Me” and “Contact Us”

2. Check your navigation

Imagine a website without a navigation bar. Finding anything you wanted would be a struggle.

That’s why it’s essential to ensure that your navigation menu not only exists but also makes sense to visitors. Even if your navigation menu seems logical to you (the person most familiar with your website), your visitors may not find it so user-friendly.

So start by heading over to your homepage and looking at your menu.

Ask yourself:

  • Is it clear?
  • Does it link to all my most important pages?
  • Is it cluttered with unnecessary stuff?
  • Have I made it easy for visitors to contact me if they have questions?

If the answer to any of those questions is no, it may be time to rethink how your menu works.

3. Check for mobile-friendliness

Did you know that more than 49% of people browse the web via mobile devices?

That means the majority of your visitors are probably viewing your website on mobile. 3–4% of people browse via tablets, which is why 49% is the majority. 

Furthermore, over 63% of Google searches are done on mobile—and that’s just in the US. Worldwide the figure is even higher.

Translation: You need a mobile-friendly website, or you’re alienating over half of your visitors. Always check to see how your website looks on a mobile device. Just because your website builder states that it is responsive doesn’t mean it will look good on mobile. Spend the time making sure it does.

4. Check that your site loads fast

Google states that 53% of mobile visitors leave websites that take more than 3 seconds to load.

Furthermore, Amazon found that a slowdown of 100 milliseconds cost them 1% in sales. If a company the size of Amazon experiences this, smaller websites will be hit possibly even harder.

Still not convinced on the importance of speed?

Google stated that site speed is a ranking factor way back in 2010.

In other words, it’s essential that your site loads fast. Luckily, Google has a free tool for checking page speed. It’s called PageSpeed Insights. Paste in a URL, and it’ll kick back a “speed score” for both desktop and mobile.

5. Check content “quality”

Whether it’s a blog post or a simple “about us” page, your content should be high-quality and valuable to your visitors. That means being:

  • Well-written
  • Informative
  • Free of spelling and grammatical errors (hint: use Grammarly to check)
  • Easy to understand (hint: use Hemmingway or Readable)
  • Skimmable (i.e., not a giant wall of text)
  • Not a duplicate of another page

If you have a relatively small site (fewer than twenty pages), you can check all of the above manually with ease. Load the pages up one-by-one and read through them. Fix any errors you come across.

These 5 steps can help you address the initial details of how your website is viewed by both customers and the search engines, however it is worth taking time to get an expert to run through a complete website audit, looking at all the back end technical aspects of the website as well as these basic steps. A full website audit can raise issues that you weren’t aware of, and can dramatically increase your site performance based on optimization following the audit.

Digital Bazaar are happy to offer audits on your website, and then to work with you to ensure that your design, functionality and technical setup work to give you the best possible online presence. Contact us to make an appointment now.