How to perform a website on-page SEO audit

Blog tutorial How to perform a website on-page SEO audit

Why do we carry out an SEO audit?

    The quality of content, speed, and usability of the website are the basic factors of SEO. In fact, SEO actions can be compared to product advertising. If it is poor, looks bad and has disadvantages, even the best advertisement will not succeed and its effectiveness will be low. If the product is extremely good and looks great, its advertising will be much easier, and users will start recommending the product themselves.

Similarly, you should focus on both on-page and off-page SEO of a website. If the website is fast and has great content, then even with a small number of links and other external signals, it will start to rank high in the search results. However, if the website contains duplicate content and works slowly, users will likely leave it immediately after entering it. Excessive linking will not help the website, because it will be unattractive for users and will have a high rejection rate. An SEO audit is designed to indicate the steps that need to be taken to solve the problems of the website and to make it more attractive for users and search engine robots alike.


How to perform an SEO audit? 

    In order to carry out an audit, we will use pulno.com to automatically build a list of potential problems and actions that we will have to perform. I chose ciasta.org blog for the test because as a website where nothing has been changed for about 10 years, it's great for showing potential problems that we may encounter.

Let's start by entering the address of the page that we'll be analyzing in the panel:

adding new analysis

Usually, the analysis should take up to 10 minutes. In this case, it lasted much longer, which suggests that something is wrong with the blog in the very beginning.

When the analysis is done, we receive a screen with a list of problems which occur on the website. Now, it is time to start analyzing each of them one by one.

finished analysis screen

At first glance, you can already see the most serious problems such as: speed of the website, lack of encryption, lack of mobile version, broken external links, a large number of noindex pages, as well as empty meta description. After clicking the Let's fix this link, we get a tooltip with a piece of short information about the problem and a link to a detailed report describing the problem. We will start with a response time report of the website.


Page speed analysis

response time report

    In the report, we see a list of pages where load times are quite long. According to the tooltip information, times above 600 ms are considered slow, and times above 1500 ms are considered very slow. This is the time in which the page will generate a response to the user. This time depends on many factors: hosting speed, page size, quality of programming code that generates a given page, and the use of cache to generate a website.

On the Pulno blog, there is an article detailing the problem of Page Load Time


Linking analysis

    Another report that is worth analyzing is the report on broken external links. 

broken external links report

The report shows that on 4 pages there are links to non-existent external websites. This should be fixed because search engines do not like websites that look messy. Moreover, users may find themselves on nonfunctioning parts of the website.


The website also shows us less important errors and problems, divided into categories. Links to particular reports are visible in the right sidebar. 

right sidebar


Content analysis

    Another problem that should be addressed is the duplication of content. In Pulno, we analyze different types of content problems such as duplicated titles, meta descriptions, duplication of h1 headers, as well as the uniqueness of content. By clicking on a report from the Content category and selecting a report of a page with no unique content or a page with a small amount of unique content, you get a list of pages where such a problem occurs. If these are category pages, it is a minor problem. However, placing unique content there as well is also recommended. However, if these are, for example, product pages in a shop, then the problem is very serious and limits the chances of a given product appearing high in the results of search engines.

pages with no unique content

Now, by clicking on the orange link, e.g. /keks/ we are taken to a detailed analysis of this page and at the very bottom you will find information about the content and its uniqueness.

no unique content on specific page

We can see here that the only unique text are the navigation links, a piece of a recipe and a summary of the publication of an entry on the blog. After pressing the "show more" button we receive detailed information about the uniqueness of the content on the website. The analyzer shows only the content that has a chance to be unique inside the whole website. Content duplicated on many pages will not appear because it does not carry any value.

unique content analyzer

There are two icons next to each text: a magnifying glass icon, which will allow us to ask Google if a particular sentence also appears on other websites, and a funnel icon, which will allow us to check on which other pages inside our website a given content occurs. In this case, only the last sentence appears in other places, so we will try to check in which ones by clicking on the last funnel.

identical content on many pages

This allows us to easily improve the content or remove it from pages where the content is redundant and, in fact, harms us more than helps us. Pulno also has a system for detecting duplicate pages. In this case, there was no such problem. Duplication of content within one website is a negative factor and should be avoided, but copying content from other websites, or allowing others to copy our content is even worse. Pulno allows us to verify in a simple way whether sentences used in our website have not appeared in others. To verify this, just click on the magnifying glass next to the sentence. Then we go to Google and search for specific content, which appears on our website.

searching specific phrase in Google with single result

A single result means that our content has not been copied in any significant indexed website. However, an entry for which many results will appear, and in their description, you will see the whole sentence from our website written in bold, means that the content is not unique and can be found on other websites.

searching specific phrase in Google with many results

If our result appears first, it is a good sign, because the search engine decided that we are the original source of the content, and other websites probably duplicated this content. If we are not the first, the search engine probably decided that it was us who copied the marked content. Search engine results are not always based on who published the given content first. The determinant is often the reliability and popularity of the website on which the text is placed. Therefore, it is a bad idea to publish content from our website on other websites, and especially to publish copies of our own content on various aggregates or advertising information on the Internet.


Detailed analysis of pages

    Pulno audit also allows you to analyze a specific page and check the problems associated with it and has a set of tools that allow us to fix many of them. In order to go to a detailed analysis of individual pages, just click on their path in the filter. The filter is located at the bottom of the main page of a given analysis, as well as in many other detailed reports.

list of pages

Click on the link / to check the homepage of the website. The analysis is divided into individual sections. 

top section of page analysis

The first section contains an icon with a link to the source page, then an icon for the report of incoming links and outgoing links, as well as information about the type of connection, whether it is encrypted or HTTP as in this case.

Popular codes are 301 - i.e. redirection to another page, 404 - the page does not exist, or 503 - i.e. subpage display failure. We also include information when we last analyzed a particular page.

There are also buttons for reanalysis or full analysis (one that will check page speed, generate optimized images or prepare an optimized CSS file for a given page).

At the very bottom, you will find information about canonical, hreflang, redirects, if any, as well as the destination of 301 redirects.

The next section contains links to analyses similar to those on the homepage, and below there is a section with detailed analysis. This section includes analyses such as:

server response time and page speed data

Analysis of server response time and PageSpeed audit results.

Analysis of meta description, title, h1 on page

Analysis of meta description, title, h1 headings and related problems

resource optimization

Resource optimization, image compression, CSS cleaning or detecting problems with linking web resources.

The analysis also includes links to the report on the internal link flow on the website. It can detect problems with linking, e.g., in this case, the system noticed that the selected page is 4 clicks away from the homepage. A good practice is to maintain the entire content no more than 3 clicks from the main page. It is obviously not possible for very large websites, but it is recommended to shorten this distance as much as possible.

list of internal links

Looking at the details of the analysis, we can see that there is one page linking to this page, which is three clicks away from the homepage. Other pages linking to this page are several dozen clicks away.

internal links analyzer

You can see that there is a problem with the listings on the website. There should not be pages that are a few dozen clicks away from the homepage. This also explains why the analysis of the website took quite a long time because links to some pages appeared only after several dozen cycles of searching for pages. On the homepage, there was also a message that 145 pages are more than 10 clicks away from the homepage, and 118 pages are 6-9 clicks away, which is already way too far.

After careful analysis, you can see that there is no need for a list of articles published by the administrator because he was the one who published all articles on this blog. Also, the category of recipes is too large because it contains almost all articles. Additionally, the listings of articles are too short, which means that some categories have several dozen pages in pagination.

On the main page of the analysis, there are a lot of other problems that need to be solved: the system has detected a lack of a site map file, no alt entries in the images, no encryption and mobile version. The next step should, therefore, be to solve all these problems in accordance with the instructions in the tooltips and the articles on the blog. Then, run a reanalysis to verify that all problems have been fixed.

dashboard with clickable tooltips

(Clickable tooltips)

If the website does not belong to us but to the client or if the solution of individual problems requires an agreement with the webmaster of the website, it is possible to generate a report using the Download the report button located on the right side panel of the main page of the analysis, or to share the report using the share button.

dashboard with marked buttons

A sample report contains the Main report tab with a list of all errors to be solved, as well as links to reports and documentation. In addition, it contains tabs with a detailed description of all errors by category, as well as information on which page the error occurred.

report with a list of all errors

As you can see, doing an SEO audit and creating a list of tasks is not a very difficult process.

The only thing you need to do is to analyze a few pages in order to gain experience and efficiently solve problems of your websites.



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