SEO Checklist

Approximately 3.5 billion queries are processed by Google each day, and these searches account for 80% of all website traffic. Because of this, nearly 85% of marketers think that SEO (search engine optimization) is very beneficial for accomplishing company objectives.

Customers might find you online when they search for anything thanks to SEO. It all comes down to making sure the information on your website appears higher or close to the top of search results so that users can find you more quickly when they look for something connected to what you have to offer.

Google algorithm is always changing. Every time it found a different way to give rankings to websites. The things Google liked before might not be good anymore. In previous times Google just didn’t even care how many keywords you’re using in your content, it was popular. But now it can make things worse and your site can be penalized by Google. 

A checklist for SEO helps make sure your website is set up to do well in search results. It’s a list of things to do to improve your site’s visibility. Sometimes people get confused about SEO, what should they do or not. In that case, an SEO checklist helps them & make sure you don’t miss anything important. So, let’s start the checklist;

1. Google Search Console

The Google Search Console (GSC) is a very useful tool. It helps you monitor how well your website is performing in Google search results, much like your best friend on the internet. GSC allows you to view what Google thinks of your website, identify any problems that may be preventing it from performing at its best, and address them. It feels as though you are speaking with Google directly! GSC is crucial for ensuring that your website performs at its peak on the most widely used search engine in the world, regardless of your level of SEO expertise.

2. Google Analytics

Setting up Google Analytics is essential for understanding your website’s performance. It’s a free tool that tracks your website traffic, where it comes from, and user actions. With Google Analytics, you can:

  • Discover which pages attract the most (or least) visitors.
  • Monitor metrics like bounce rate, page views, and time spent on your site.
  • Identify sources like other websites and search engines that drive traffic to your site.

To set up your account and maximize its benefits, check out our Google Analytics guide. It’s your key to unlocking valuable insights about your website’s effectiveness.

3. Create & Submit a Site Map

It’s similar to creating a map for search engines to navigate your website when you create and submit a sitemap. It is a file that lists all of the files and pages on your website that you would like search engines to be aware of. By doing this, search engines are better able to comprehend your website and appropriately index its information. You’re essentially leading search engines through the maze of your website by developing and publishing a sitemap, which makes it easier for them to locate and present consumers with your useful information.

In order to make sure that your website is correctly indexed and shows up in search results, you must submit your sitemap to search engines such as Google, Bing, and others. Website owners can simplify the process by generating sitemaps automatically with the help of plugins or built-in functionality found in many content management systems (CMS). Once your sitemap is ready, you can submit it by including it in your robots.txt file or by using the corresponding webmaster tools that search engines offer. This increases the possibility that your website’s pages and content will be efficiently scanned and indexed by search engines by ensuring that they are aware of them all.

4. Create a Robots.txt File

Creating a robots.txt file is like giving directions to search engines. It tells them which parts of your website to explore and which ones to skip. Imagine it as a map for search engines, guiding them through your website. By creating a robots.txt file, you can control how search engines interact with your site, ensuring they focus on the most important pages and ignore any sensitive or unnecessary ones. 

This simple step helps improve your website’s visibility and ensures that search engines prioritize crawling the pages that matter most to you and your visitors. So, take a few minutes to create and upload a robots.txt file to your website’s root directory to steer search engine bots in the right direction. 

5. Keyword Research Checklist

The whole SEO depends on keywords and these keywords are the founder of SEO. Finding the right keyword for making your business popular on SERPs (search engine result pages) is most important. These keywords help search engines to pick the right relatable website that users are searching. 

Here’s how you can do it:

  • Identify Relevant Keywords: Think about what your potential customers might search for online. Consider words and phrases that directly relate to your products, services, or industry. For example, if you sell organic skincare products, relevant keywords could include “natural skincare,” “organic beauty products,” or “cruelty-free cosmetics.”
  • Use Keyword Tools: Thankfully, there are tools available to help you find the best keywords for your website. Google Keyword Planner and SEMrush, and many more are some popular options. These tools can show you how many people are searching for specific keywords each month and how competitive those keywords are.
  • Analyze Competitor Keywords: Take a peek at what your competitors are doing. Look at their websites and see what keywords they’re targeting. This can give you valuable insights into what’s working in your industry and where there might be opportunities for you to stand out.
  • Prioritize Long-Tail Keywords: While short, generic keywords can be highly competitive, long-tail keywords are more specific and often easier to rank for. These are phrases that consist of three or more words and target a particular niche or audience intent. For instance, instead of targeting “skincare,” you might focus on “best organic sunscreen for sensitive skin.” Long-tail keywords can help you attract highly relevant traffic and potential customers who are closer to making a purchase decision.
  • Main Money Keywords: Key “money” words are the ones that bring in leads, sales, and conversions. These are usually popular and competitive terms that describe your offerings. They’re also known as main keywords or central page keywords.

6. On-Page SEO:

On-Page SEO is all about optimizing the content and structure of your website pages to make them more appealing to search engines. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Use Target Keyword in the Page Title: The page title is like the headline of your web page. Make sure your main keyword appears in it to tell search engines what your page is about.
  • Place Keywords Naturally in Your Content: Sprinkle your keywords throughout your content, but don’t overdo it. Use them in headers, subheadings, and body text in a way that sounds natural and makes sense.
  • Use Descriptive, SEO-Friendly URLs: Your web page URLs should be easy to read and understand, both for people and search engines. Include your keywords in the URL and avoid long strings of random characters.
  • Optimize Images with Alt Tags: Search engines can’t see images like humans can, so you need to tell them what your images are about. Use descriptive alt tags that include your keywords to improve your chances of showing up in image search results.
  • Make Use of Internal Links: Internal links are like pathways that connect different pages of your website. Use them to guide visitors to related content and help search engines understand the structure of your site better.
  • Use External Links to Reputable Sources: When you mention information or sources from other websites, link to them. This not only adds credibility to your content but also shows search engines that you’re providing valuable information to your readers.

7. Content Quality

The quality of content matters to search engines. So try to write high quality content for both search engines and users. Here’s how you can do it in simple steps:

  • Make it Awesome: Your content should be top-notch, informative, and interesting. Firstly write for users then Search engine. 
  • Keep it Organized: Nobody likes to read a jumbled mess! Structure your content so it’s easy to read and understand. Use headings, bullet points, and paragraphs to break up the text and make it visually appealing.
  • Use the Right Words: Keywords are important for SEO, but don’t overstuff them. Use them naturally throughout your content, focusing on relevance rather than stuffing them everywhere.
  • Freshen it Up: Keep your content up-to-date and relevant. Update it regularly with new information or insights to show search engines that your website is active and trustworthy.
  • Spice it Up: Add some flavor to your content by including multimedia elements like videos, infographics, or interactive features. These not only make your content more valuable but also encourage visitors to spend more time on your site.

8. Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly 

As we know, more and more people are using their smartphones and tablets to browse the internet. This means it’s super important to make sure your website looks and works great on mobile devices. Here how you can make your website mobile-friendly. 

  • Responsive Design: This is a fancy way of saying that your website should automatically adjust and look good no matter what size screen someone is using. Whether they’re on a big computer or a tiny phone screen, your website should still be easy to read and use.
  • Speed Matters: Mobile users are often on the go and don’t have time to wait for slow-loading websites. Make sure your site loads quickly on mobile devices by optimizing images, reducing unnecessary elements, and using browser caching to store parts of your site so they don’t have to be downloaded every time someone visits.
  • Test, Test, Test: Google has a handy tool called the Mobile-Friendly Test. It lets you see how well your website performs on mobile devices and gives you suggestions for improvements. Use this tool to identify any issues with your mobile site and fix them to provide the best experience for your visitors.

9. Technical SEO

Technical SEO means making your website better for search engines so they can find, understand, and remember your content easily. It also includes improving user experience, like making your site faster and more user-friendly on phones. Doing technical SEO well can make your site show up more in search results. In includes;

  • XML Sitemap Submission: XML sitemap helps Search engines discover and index all the pages on your website. It gives the clear direction to search engines on where to find your content. 
  • Proper Use of Canonical Tags: Canonical tags that tell search engines which version of a web page is the preferred one. This is crucial for avoiding duplicate content issues, which can confuse search engines and hurt your rankings. 
  • Structured Data Markup ( Structured data markup, often implemented using vocabulary, provides search engines with additional context about your content. It helps them understand what your content is about and can lead to enhanced search results known as rich snippets. Rich snippets can include things like star ratings, event dates, or product prices, making your listing stand out in search results and potentially attracting more clicks.
  • HTTPS for Secure Browsing: Security is a top priority for both users and search engines. Implementing HTTPS encryption ensures that data transferred between your website and its visitors is secure. Not only does this protect sensitive information, but it also gives your website a slight ranking boost in search results. 
  • Check and Fix Broken Links: Broken links, also known as dead links or 404 errors, can frustrate users and signal to search engines that your website may not be well-maintained. Regularly scan your website for broken links and fix them accurately. You can use tools like Google Search Console or online link checkers to identify and find any broken links.

10. Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO means doing things outside of your website to make it rank higher in search engine results. This includes stuff like getting other websites to link to yours, making sure your business shows up in local searches, getting influencers to talk about your website, and other similar strategies. It includes;

  • Building Quality Backlinks: Backlinks are like votes of confidence from other websites. When reputable sites link to yours, search engines see your site as more trustworthy. So, aim to get links from respected websites within your industry. For example, if you run a cooking blog, getting a link from a popular food magazine’s website would be great.
  • Using Social Media: Social media is a powerful tool for expanding your website’s reach. Share your content on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn to get more people to see it. When your content gets shared, liked, or commented on, it increases your brand’s visibility and can lead to more people visiting your site.
  • Managing Online Reviews & Citations: Online reviews and citations are mentions of your business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP) on other websites. Positive reviews and accurate citations can improve your online reputation and indirectly influence your search engine rankings. 

11. Local SEO

Local SEO is a kind of strategy that helps local businesses to be more visible in local searches. It makes sure your business ranks on top when people nearby are searching for your products or services. Here are some simple steps you can take to improve your local search visibility:

  • Your Google My Business Listing: First things first, claim your Google My Business (GMB) listing if you haven’t already. It’s free and essential for local SEO. Make sure all your business information is accurate, including your name, address, phone number (NAP), and business hours. Add photos, a detailed description of your business, and any other relevant information to make your listing more appealing to potential customers.
  • Get Positive Reviews: Encourage your happy customers to leave reviews on your GMB profile. Positive reviews not only boost your credibility but also improve your local search visibility. Respond quickly and politely to all reviews, whether they’re positive or negative. It shows that you care about your customers and their feedback.
  • Use Local Keywords: Identify local keywords related to your business and incorporate them naturally into your website content and meta tags. Think about what people in your area might be searching for when looking for businesses like yours, and write your content accordingly.
  • Maintain Local Business Listings: Keep your business information up to date on other online directories such as Yelp, Yellow Pages, and Bing Places. Consistency is key, so make sure your NAP details match across all platforms to avoid confusion.

12. User Experience

User experience (UX) refers to how visitors interact with your website and how enjoyable and efficient that interaction is. Here are some simple ways to enhance UX:

  • Easy Navigation: your website should be easy to navigate, with clear menus and organized content.
  • Readability: Use clear fonts, colors, and spacing to make your content easy to read and understand.
  • Minimize Intrusiveness: Avoid overwhelming visitors with too many pop-ups and ads that disrupt their browsing experience.
  • Mobile-Friendly Design: Ensure your website is optimized for mobile devices, with responsive design that smoothly works on different screen sizes.

13. SEO Audit

Regular SEO audits are like check-ups for your website’s health. Just like you visit the doctor for a check-up, conducting SEO audits helps you identify and fix any issues that might be holding your site back from ranking well on search engines.

During these audits, you’ll look at things like website speed, broken links, keyword optimization, and more. When issues pop up, it’s essential to fix them quickly. By doing so, you’ll keep your website in top shape, ensuring it performs well in search engine results and attracts more visitors over time.

Lastly, Don’t forget, SEO needs constant attention. To stay up-to-date on industry trends and google algorithms is key to getting success in the online world. Make sure to regularly update your SEO checklist to keep up with the shifts in the SEO world.

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