Before launching the new project, it is important to check the settings of the website and evaluate its readiness for SEO promotion. Otherwise, it is possible to complicate significantly its further promotion in search engines.
In this article, we will list the main settings of a resource which we recommend checking before opening the website to indexation.
The success of the website promotion in SE directly depends on the quality of the performed works on internal optimization of the website: optimization of headings and metatags, content, URL, alt-tags to images.
Therefore, we recommend checking all these blocks before opening the website to indexation on a first-priority basis.
Headings and metatags
Make sure that headings and metatags are registered for each page of the website.
- Title must be readable sentences in which the necessary keywords are accurately put. If your Title looks like an enumeration of key requests or they include only the key request without additional words, it is better to improve them.
Make sure that Title differs from the heading of the text, it must be unique for each page. It is undesirable to repeat them even partially on different pages of the website.
- H1 must be short. Having looked at them, you should understand the main essence of the page. Also check if they are unique for each page of the website.
- The description must be readable text from 100 to 250 characters, it should correspond to the content of the page and contain keywords (but not enumeration of keywords).
Make sure that the description differs from the Title and it is unique for each page.
Pay attention! Description can be missed for the subsidiary pages, but in this case you should delete it completely, do not leave an empty tag <meta name=" description" content="«>.
Incorrectly structured texts on the website and spelling errors can badly affect the trust of the searcher to the website.
Make sure that texts on the website are:
- unique — not only technically, but also conceptually;
- useful — contain the necessary information for the user;
- well structured — your text does not remind a sheet or unreadable text. If necessary, use lists, add images to the text, highlight important information and key points etc. It is convenient and pleasant to read the text;
- contain the keywords which are naturally written in the text.
Make sure that the URL of your website is clear (SNC), contains keyword and reflect page nesting.
The correct generation of URLs is positively evaluated by searchers that will give plus in ranking of website pages.
Alt-tags to images
Check, whether alt-tags are optimized to all images on the website.
It is not so critical, but the correct optimization of images can attract additional traffic, for example, from picture search.
It is possible to check with Web developer or Xenu’s Link Sleuth.
Technical errors on the website can prevent search robots from indexing your website, that is why it is necessary to pay attention to them.
Things that are important to check:
Check, whether robots.txt is filled according to the rules, maybe, some mistakes were made during its creation.
You can look at syntax of robots.txt in recommendations — Google
You can check the file in services:
Yandex. Webmaster —>Analysis of robots.txt.
Screenshot from Yandex. Webmaster:
—Google Search Console
How to work with the instrument of verification of the robots.txt file, you can look here.
Be convinced that the map in the XML format (Sitemaps) is created on the website and that it is added to a toolbar for webmasters of Google and Yandex.
Check, whether mistakes are made in it. It can be made by means of special tools of Yandex and Google search engines.
Check, whether the error page 404 is configured: enter any nonexistent page on the website and look what the user will see: whether it is clear that it is the page of an error, if there are links to other sections of the website, if there is your logo, if the page design fit into the design of all website etc.
Example of well implemented page 404:
Website HTML code validity
Check a HTML code for validity. HTML errors can complicate the indexation of the website pages by search engines, that will negatively influence its promotion.
It is possible to check it by means of HTML Validator.
Check, whether the doubles are present on the website. Inner doubles can lead to degradation of website indexing, dropping and imposition of sanctions in SE.
Frequently met inner doubles when the page is available are the following:
— with slash or without: site.ru/ and site.ru
— with www and without www
— with index.html and without it
Website usability estimation
Before opening the website to indexation it is also important to analyze, if it is convenient to use the website. The more convenient user feels while achieving desirable result (to look the price, to make purchase, to find interesting information etc.), the better effect it will have on website promotion.
Analyze the website from the point of view of the visitor. If it is an online store, would you make a purchase on the website? If it is an information resource, would you trust the information written on the website? It is worth paying special attention to the following:
- “Contact” page is filled in completely;
Check, whether you specified all contact methods, and be convinced that up-to-date contact information is indicated on the website.
- “About Us” or “About the Company” page;
Analyze the page. Think whether you specified all information, important for the user, whether it causes trust to your company.
If you have an information website, check whether there is necessary information about the author of articles.
- Make sure, that information on delivery is fully provided on the website.
Structure and functionality of the website
The structure of the website should be as simple as possible and convenient for visitors. Make sure, that any page which you promote was not further, then in 3 clicks from the main page of the website.
It is also important to test the interaction of the user and the website before its opening to indexation and to be convinced that all services work correctly at the website. For example, it is important to check the correctness of the following:
- site search;
- form of feedback;
- “Online consultant” form;
- ordering option (if it is an online store). Necessarily go through all way of order/purchase on the website from clicking the button “to purchase” /» to order" up to delivery notification;
- internal links;
- icons of social nets. Try to share the page in different social nets, if it displays correctly;
display of pictures/photo.
Imagine that you want to purchase some specific goods, and use all opportunities which you offer on the website. Check everything manually or ask your friends to make an order/purchase on your website.
Your main task is to test all services of the website and if it is possible, to facilitate the operations of the user on the website.
Adaptive design of the website
During an era of mobile technologies, it is very important to check how your website is displayed on devices with different screen resolutions before the project startup.
You can use the following services to check it:
— The online service http://quirktools.com/screenfly/
— The script for the Chrome browser http://lab.maltewassermann.com/viewport-resizer/
It is also necessary to check whether the website is compatible with all popular browsers. It can be made by means of Firefox Web Developer add-in. It allows to check the website on different screen resolutions.
Website download speed
Check the download speed of the website.
Time, spent for loading of all elements of the page from the moment of request to the server should not exceed 3-5 seconds.
If your level is above this mark, try to speed up the website.
Services used to check the download speed:
You can check, whether there are defects on the website by means of PageSpeed Google service.
Safety of the website
- Check, whether there are harmful and untrusted files by means of Manul;
- Be convinced that passwords are stored in a reliable place;
— Register the website in Yandex. Webmaster and Search Console;
With their help, you will be able to check pages of the website regularly for harmful viruses and suspicious activity (XSS, spam in forums, the arrangement of hidden spam links on pages).
— Make a website backup;
Backup of the website and database will prevent you from a data loss and recover work of the website if your website was cracked, infected with a virus or if the hosting broke down.
We also recommend to configure automatic creation of backup copies of the website and check that the current copy of the website is regularly created. For example, for the website on WordPress, it is possible to install BackWPup plug-in.
Collection of analytical data
To trace efficiency of the website, it is important to configure analytics before a project startup. Check, whether:
— counters for statistics collecting of Google Analytics and Yandex.Metrics;
— tracking of targets
are configured on the website.
By means of received data you will be able:
- to measure the website traffic;
- to analyze the behavior of users and the efficiency of advertising campaigns;
- to analyze sales and conversion;
- to analyze the action of users on the website etc.
So, before a project startup check:
- internal optimization of the website;
- technical settings;
- services of the website;
- counters for statistics collecting;
- protection of the website;
- setup of the purposes.
Have a successful start!