Website SEO Evaluation
SEO strategies are constantly changing for the demands of search engines. Some strategies were really effective in the early 2000s, but nowadays they’re not. In the same light, what is now effective may not be later on.
Updating strategies based on trends is the best practice I have ever experienced. From the mid-1990s, webmasters and content providers began to optimize their websites for search engines. And now, in 2014 we are still optimizing our websites but practice different strategies from before. In line with that, the evaluation process should also be changed to go along with it.
Google’s way of evaluating the SEO of a website has dramatically changed over time. In fact, if we used the old processes, we won’t be able to make value out of it. So, it is crucial to know the strategies that exist now, especially the latest algorithms.
Some of us are not well aware – so as to make things clear, I have included 5 steps to evaluate SEO effectiveness of a website.
Step #1: Check Website Authority
Website authority means the strength of your website against others. In the SEO industry, it is the combination of domain and page authority which are also called Moz DA and PA.
Whereas Domain Authority measures the predictive ranking strength of the entire domains or subdomains, Page Authority measures the strength of individual page.
The DA and PA are the aggregate of 3 metrics:
1. MozRank – It measures the link popularity.
2. MozTrust – It measures the link trust.
3. Link Profile – It measures the total link profile.
By checking a website’s Moz authority, we can get a quick evaluation of how the site is, altogether. In fact, we may get a quick review of the site’s link popularity, trust and profile too. With that, it certainly is a qualified choice.
So just head over to Moz’s Open Site Explorer and perform this checkup. In this case, a higher rate means better authority. (For all analysis in this post, I will be using my new personal blog Blogging Spell:)
We can see it has a domain authority of 30/100, and a page authority of 40/100. This rate adequately show that the site reviewed is quite new and not yet authoritative over search engines.
Step #2: Check Social Signals
Social media platforms were not given that much importance a few years ago. Do you know why? Because everybody thought, they weren’t enough to deliver a valuable amount of sales.
When I first heard that Moz Beginner’s Guide to SEO ranked on the 4th position for the search query “beginner’s guide” – just because of a tweet by Smashing Magazine – I was appalled.
Since then, I have been a great fan of social media sites. Now that everyone has started to realize how effective these sites are, digging into the social signals will help let us know how a site is performing over the social media platforms.
Signals point out a website’s popularity – with the higher signals depicting more popularity and recommendations in the social media platforms and the ‘lower signal’ shows less popular and possibly unrated by the audiences.
Step #3: Check Traffic Ranks
A site without traffic is like a pool without water – it’s nothing.
Traffic rank is another great factor to determine a website’s success. A site with a huge number of daily visitors means it has something important. The visitors benefit from the website, otherwise they won’t be going there daily.
Traffic can reveal if a website is worth ranking or not. If you look into some popular websites, you will come to realize that they are also leading in the search engines.
So the equation is: Higher Ranking = Higher Traffic.
That is why we should leverage the traffic ranks to accurately evaluate a website. There are also three things to look for besides the traffic rank:
1. Bounce Rate – Lower bounce rate is better for a website.
2. Search Visits – Higher search visits mean higher rankings in search engines.
3. Time Spend on Site – It will let you know how well the content is.
No idea how to do this? You might possibly know about Alexa, Compete and Quantcast – the top notch companies that record traffic data and count ranks as well.
Step #4: Conduct a Link Audit
Backlinks are similar to votes. Whenever we love a website, we vote for it by creating links that lead back to it. Meaning, the total number of links equate to the number of people who value a website.
Search engines always has its eyes on rank worthy websites. If the ranking process depended on a program, there may be difficulty in getting correct and accurate decisions. In this case, when the program needs help in ranking the appropriate website, the backlinks will help finalize that decision.
By conducting the link audit of a website, we will learn how much a website was appreciated through the number of links that managed to connect back to it – the more natural a link profile is, the more trustworthy the SEO job was done. After launching a link audit, focus on the following factors:
1. Total Number of Links – The higher is always better.
2. Referring Pages – The higher is better, but it should be in a good ratio with referring domain.
3. Referring Domains – Higher is always better for this one. But high authoritative domains are the best.
4. Backlink Types – Nofollow and Dofollow both are good in a natural proportion.
5. Anchor Text Distribution – The most natural distribution is the best.