How to Conduct an SEO Audit – 15 Step Checklist

Today, I’m going to show you exactly how to conduct an SEO audit in 2024. This process has helped me grow my organic traffic by 28.55% over the last year, and it can help you achieve higher Google rankings. Let’s dive in!

Step #1: Ensure Your Site Is Mobile-Friendly

With 60% of Google searches coming from mobile devices, mobile SEO is crucial. Google now uses the mobile version of your site for both mobile and desktop searches.

To check if your site is mobile-friendly, use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Testing Tool. Enter your site URL, and the tool will let you know if your site is optimized for mobile devices.

Step #2: Confirm Google Indexes ONE Version of Your Website

It’s essential to have only one version of your site indexed by Google to avoid duplicate content issues. The four possible versions are:


Check if all versions redirect to a single preferred version using 301 redirects. You can do this manually by entering each URL in your browser. If they don’t redirect correctly, set up 301 redirects to your preferred version.

Step #3: Speed Up Your Site

Site speed is a confirmed ranking factor by Google. Here’s how to speed up your site:

  1. Clean up your HTML code: Use PageSpeed Insights to identify issues.
  2. Run a speed test: Tools like WebPageTest or GTMetrix can help identify bottlenecks.
  3. Compress images: Use tools like to reduce image sizes.
  4. Upgrade hosting: Invest in premium hosting for better performance.

Step #4: Identify and Delete “Zombie Pages”

“Zombie Pages” are low-quality pages that can hurt your SEO. Use in Google to see the total number of indexed pages. If this number is unexpectedly high, you likely have Zombie Pages. Common types include:

  • Archive pages
  • Category and tag pages (WordPress)
  • Search result pages
  • Old press releases
  • Thin content (less than 50 words)

Deleting these pages can boost your organic traffic significantly.

Step #5: Find and Fix Indexing Problems

Use Google Search Console to find pages that Google isn’t indexing. Check the “Index Coverage” report for any errors. Additionally, use Screaming Frog to crawl your site and identify any pages blocked by robots.txt or with noindex tags.

Step #6: Check Your Organic Traffic

Use Google Analytics to monitor your organic traffic. Navigate to Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels and select “Organic Search”. Set the date range to the last 6-8 months to analyze traffic trends.

Step #7: Improve Your On-Page SEO

Focus on optimizing your top 5 most important pages. These could be pages targeting important keywords, getting less traffic than before, or ranking well but could crack the top 5. Optimize these pages by:

  • Including your keyword in the title tag
  • Using your keyword in the first 100 words
  • Adding 5+ external and internal links
  • Using LSI keywords

Step #8: Set Up Keyword Rank Tracking

Track your keyword rankings using a tool like SEMrush. SEMrush automatically finds keywords you rank for and provides detailed tracking reports.

Step #9: Analyze Your Backlinks

Backlinks remain crucial for SEO. Use tools like SEMrush to analyze your backlink profile. Look at:

  • Referring domains
  • Domain Authority (or similar metric)
  • Anchor text distribution
  • Toxic links

If you find spammy links, consider disavowing them.

Step #10: Fix Broken Links

Broken links harm user experience and SEO. Use Google Search Console to find broken pages and tools like Broken Link Check to find broken internal and external links.

Step #11: Conduct Competitor Analysis

Spy on your competitors using SEMrush. Identify their top keywords and analyze their high-ranking pages. Look for patterns in their content and backlinks. Use this information to inform your own content and link-building strategies.

Step #12: Enhance Your Content

Make your content 10x better by:

  • Writing short intros
  • Using small paragraphs
  • Including lots of subheaders
  • Adding visuals and videos

This approach will improve user engagement and dwell time, which are positive signals for SEO.

Step #13: Optimize for UX Signals

Google’s RankBrain algorithm uses user experience signals to rank pages. Improve your UX by:

  • Updating outdated content
  • Making your content actionable and easy to understand
  • Ensuring your content meets user intent

This will lead to better rankings and increased traffic.

Step #14: Flatten Your Website Architecture

A flat site architecture helps search engines find and index your pages more efficiently. Ensure it takes no more than three clicks to reach any page on your site. Use internal linking and sidebar links to achieve this.

Step #15: Launch a Skyscraper Post

The Skyscraper Technique involves creating content that’s significantly better than what’s currently ranking. Analyze the top results for your target keyword and produce content that’s more comprehensive and engaging. Promote your new content to drive traffic and links, which will help Google index and rank your site improvements.

Bonus Steps

Bonus Step #1: Maximize Internal Linking

Link to high-priority pages often to spread link equity throughout your site. Use keyword-rich anchor text naturally within your content.

Bonus Step #2: Use a Site Audit Tool

Tools like Seobility and SEMrush offer comprehensive site audit features that help identify and fix technical SEO issues.

Bonus Step #3: Optimize for Featured Snippets

Featured Snippets can significantly boost your traffic. To optimize for them:

  • Ensure your content is mobile-friendly
  • Use HTTPS
  • Include lots of headers (H2 and H3)
  • Provide concise answers (around 42 words)
  • Link to authoritative sources


Conducting an SEO audit is essential for maintaining and improving your site’s performance in search results. Follow these 15 steps, and you’ll be well on your way to higher rankings and more organic traffic in 2024. If you have any questions or additional tips, feel free to leave a comment below!

Read More