How To Perform An SEO Audit That Actually Helps You Win Clients

This post was sponsored by SE Ranking. The opinions expressed in this article are the sponsor’s own.

If you’re hoping to win over new clients in 2023, the key is to demonstrate your expertise and value, right out of the gate.

Pitching a comprehensive SEO audit of your prospective client’s website is a great way to get your best foot in the door.

Don’t worry about potentially wasted time if a client closes a deal.

With the right tools in place, creating a proactive, comprehensive SEO audit won’t add much more time to your team’s plate.

In fact, it can be done in just six steps. Let’s start with the basics first.

What Is A Comprehensive Website Audit?

A comprehensive website audit goes beyond surface-level analysis; it delves into various components that contribute to the website’s success.

These audits can provide an in-depth understanding of the website’s current state and offer valuable insights for future optimization.

By conducting a thorough analysis of your client’s website, you can proactively:

  • Uncover untapped potential that will enhance their website’s SEO performance.
  • Showcase your commitment to thorough analysis and improvement.
  • Persuade potential clients to choose your agency for their business needs.

However, conducting a comprehensive SEO audit can be a resource-consuming process for agencies. This is why some agencies opt for sending quick automatic website audit results instead of investing in holistic analyses.

How Can I Speed Up The SEO Auditing Process?

By implementing a well-defined workflow and utilizing appropriate tools, your SEO audit process can be streamlined, simplifying the lives of your teammates and increasing your chances of winning over prospective clients.

In this article, we’ll delve into why holistic SEO audits matter and then provide a step-by-step guide to ensure you are fully prepared.

Now, get ready to win over clients during your initial pitch. All it really takes to achieve this is a solid understanding of the significance of these audits.

Step 1: Gather Sources & Prepare For The SEO Audit

To prepare for an SEO audit, it’s essential to gather relevant information.

Tools that make this step faster:

  • Google Search Console and Google Analytics (though, your potential client probably won’t be able to grant you access at this point).
  • Dedicated SEO monitoring and analytics tools, like SE Ranking, that will give you insights into site performance – even if you have no access to the site’s backend.

Get A Holistic View Of The Company & Their Website’s Performance

Start by collecting website analytics data and backend tool access. This data is foundational to the audit process.

Then, engage with them in open conversations in order to familiarize yourself with the clients’:

  • Business.
  • Goals.
  • Available resources.

For example, determine if they have a dedicated development team that can address technical issues and optimizations.

Finally, thoroughly analyze the client’s target audience and industry to uncover insights into their specific needs and preferences.

For example, in the case of an ecommerce client, understanding their audience’s purchasing behaviors and preferences can inform optimization strategies for product pages and conversion funnels.

By conducting thorough research, engaging in discussions with the client, and aligning objectives, you can piece together an effective SEO audit that uncovers the client’s specific challenges and paves the way for tangible results.

Step 2: Perform Competitive Research & Analyze Strategies

Thorough competitive research is a vital part of any SEO audit process.

Gain valuable insights about your potential client’s competitive landscape by evaluating the client’s primary competitors:

  • Visibility.
  • Traffic sources.
  • Keywords.
  • Backlink profiles.

This analysis gives you a better understanding of your client’s strengths and weaknesses.

It’s also great for uncovering successful keyword strategies, which are the key to developing a comprehensive strategy that sets your client apart in the market.

How To Speed Up Competitive Research

Dedicated SEO tools, such as SE Ranking’s Competitive Analysis tool, can streamline this process by providing comprehensive data and insights.

It offers information on:

It also helps in identifying the client’s closest competitors in organic search based on the keywords they rank for.

Image created by SE Ranking, July 2023

Competitive research equips you with actionable insights to position your client for success, leading to better rankings, increased organic traffic, and higher conversions.

Step 3: Conduct A Technical Website Audit

Now, let’s proceed to the next vital step: conducting a technical website audit.

Start by:

  1. Evaluating various technical aspects, such as the page experience, broken links and redirects, sitemap and robots.txt files, noindex and canonical tags, and overall website structure.
  2. Analyzing the website’s Core Web Vitals to uncover potential issues that could impact user experience and search engine rankings.
  3. Communicating the significance of each detected issue to your client, highlighting its impact on website performance and visibility in search results.

If your client targets an international audience, address localization issues as well, including incorrect language settings or regional targeting. Ensuring a consistent experience across different locations is key.

How To Speed Up Technical Website Audits

You can streamline the technical audit process by using website audit tools, which provide comprehensive insights into these technical elements and help uncover areas for improvement.

Image created by SE Ranking, July 2023

By presenting the findings from the technical audit, you can effectively demonstrate how your expertise can yield tangible results and contribute to the client’s overall success.

Step 4: Analyze Keyword Rankings

The next step in auditing your client’s SEO performance is analyzing keywords.

Start by analyzing the client’s current keyword positions and their dynamics over time.

Identify keywords that are approaching the top 10 positions and can serve as foundations for further optimization.

Next, perform keyword research to identify new target keywords that align with the client’s goals and industry trends.

Compare the client’s keyword rankings with those of their competitors. Detect keyword overlap and gaps to pinpoint areas where the client excels and areas that require improvement.

Image created by SE Ranking, July 2023

This approach helps you craft an effective strategy that bridges the gaps and outranks competitors in relevant keyword searches.

Consider different ways to achieve this, such as optimizing existing content, creating new targeted content, or refining on-page optimization techniques.

Step 5. Evaluate The Backlink Profile

Begin this stage with a thorough backlink profile analysis.

Examine the number and quality of backlinks, referring domains, commonly used anchor texts, and the ratio between dofollow and nofollow links.

Image created by SE Ranking, July 2023

Evaluate the quality and relevance of the backlinks by considering factors such as domain trust, anchor texts, and the diversity of linking domains.

Next, compare the client’s backlink profile with those of their competitors to identify any gaps and potential opportunities.

This analysis enables you to develop a targeted strategy for acquiring high-quality backlinks that will enhance the client’s website authority and visibility in search engine results. This could involve outreach campaigns, guest blogging, partnerships, or content promotion.

Step 6. Gather Results & Prepare For The Pitch

After you’ve gathered the data, conducted a comprehensive website audit, and completed competitive research, it’s time to assemble the results and prepare for the client pitch.

Start by creating an executive summary of the audit findings, highlighting the website’s strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement. This summary should provide a concise overview of the key takeaways from the audit.

Next, pinpoint actionable recommendations and optimization strategies based on audit findings. These recommendations should address specific areas for improvement, including technical enhancements and SEO practices.

Identify the low-hanging fruit, which refers to SEO tasks that have been overlooked or left untouched for quite some time. These tasks are often straightforward but can lead to a remarkable boost in organic traffic when done the right way.

Design a customized report and presentation that visually presents the data and effectively conveys your ideas and suggestions.

How To Speed Up SEO Client Pitch Creation

Utilize SEO reporting tools to create impactful reports, enhancing the client’s comprehension and engagement with the information.

Image created by SE Ranking, July 2023

Tailor the audit findings to the client’s specific needs and goals, aligning the recommendations with their requirements.

During the pitch, present the audit findings and key in on any actionable recommendations. Also, illustrate the potential impact and ROI of implementing these proposed improvements.

Emphasize how the recommended changes can enhance their website’s performance, user experience, search engine visibility, and ultimately drive business growth.

By showcasing the value and potential outcomes, you increase the likelihood of gaining the client’s trust and securing their partnership.

Now, It’s Your Time To Shine

Conducting a thorough SEO audit serves as a powerful tool for agencies to impress potential clients and secure new business opportunities.

By capitalizing on this valuable asset, agencies can demonstrate their expertise and win client pitches with flying colors.

Embrace the potential of website audits as a means to drive business growth and establish long-lasting partnerships with clients.

Image Credits

Featured Image: Image by SE Ranking. Used with permission.