Every SEO campaign has to start somewhere. Any good plan, whether you’re building a home, preparing for a family vacation, or looking to optimize your website for search rankings, starts with research. Before you are ready to optimize your first piece of code, you need to understand the landscape around you, which means you need to know the condition of your site as it currently is and the goals you wish to achieve over the course of your campaign.
Neither fully understanding the condition of your site nor your long-term goals is easy. Performing a site-wide analysis can be time consuming and can lead the untrained person around in circles, wondering what is important and what isn’t. And while the analysis is tangible, putting together realistic goals to be accomplished is full of wild speculation mixed with some good luck and a whole lot of good business sense.
Let’s first look at the site analysis. That will give you a pretty good picture of the site’s condition and its pitfalls as well as helping you to better understand what may being going right about it. This information isn’t meant to be an all inclusive site analysis, but just a pretty quick overview of various elements that should be considered to more fully understand where the site is at and what lies ahead in terms work that needs to be performed.
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Performing a complete website review is rarely easy. I’ve found that you can start a site analysis intending to spend just a few minutes looking over it only to find that it quickly spirals into a multi-hour marathon of research. Complete website reviews can be time consuming and often produce many more hours of work beyond that.
One of the problems is that people tend want to skip right to search engine optimization forgetting that users matter. Many people want to rush into the marketing without realizing that the website itself is part of the marketing process. This is a shame.
Investing in SEO and PPC marketing, without having performed a thorough analysis of your website is largely an exercise in vain (and yes, even new websites often need a usability analysis!) You don’t have to have a perfectly usable site in order to rank well in search engines, but it is increasingly difficult to rank a site without a strong usability focus, unless you’re in a very niche industry. And even if you do rank well, without good usability you’re losing more customers than you need or want to be losing.… Continue Reading