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The Only SEO Checklist You Need

Using this SEO checklist allowed us to achieve 640,000 monthly blog searches.

Anything, including eCommerce stores, local businesses, and affiliate sites.

Checklist:

  1. Basic SEO checklist
  2. Technical SEO checklist
  3. Keyword research checklist
  4. Content checklist
  5. On-page SEO checklist
  6. Link building checklist

How to use this SEO checklist

SEO isn’t explained in most checklists. Instead, they list random tasks and imply SEO is done.

Our checklist is tagged:

Once-only \sIterate

Every page

Structure prevents you from completing this checklist today. When publishing a new page, do one-time, periodic, then ongoing tasks.

Onward!

SEO basics checklist

SEO basics. These won’t boost rankings, but Google values them.

1. Set up Google Search Console

Google Search Console tracks your site’s SEO.

Uses:

Ranking keywords

Websites error-check

Sitemaps

2. Setup  Bing Webmaster Tools

Google Search Console’s equivalent is Bing Webmaster Tools.

3. Set up Ahrefs Webmaster Tools

Ahrefs Webmaster Tools improves SEO and organic search traffic.

Featured:

SEO issues

Links

Check keywords.

AWT:

4. Google Analytics

Google Analytics shows how many people visit, where they’re from, and how they use your site.

5. Install an  SEO plugin

WordPress plugins optimise sitemaps and meta tags.

(One)

Structured SEO Rank Math

Shopify doesn’t require an SEO plugin.

6. Create and submit a sitemap

Sitemaps help search engines index your site’s content.

Sitemap:

/sitemap.xml s/sitemap index.xml s/sitemap

7.Create robots.txt

Search engines use Robots.txt to navigate your site.

A robots.txt file is essential if you want to block search engines from crawling your site. Cart pages may not be indexed for ecommerce stores.

Check yourdomain.com/robots.txt. Text files work.

SEO Robots.txt

SEO checklist

Websites rank lower due to SEO issues. Best practises in technology.

1. Plan your website structure (new sites only)

Your website must be user- and search-friendly. Make your site logical.

Brainstorm.

2. Make your website crawlable

Check Google Search Console’s Coverage report for robots.txt warnings or exclusions.

Remove the robots.txt rule to have Google index blocked pages.

3. Index your site

Indexing differs from crawling. Web crawlers can’t index pages. A ‘noindex’ robots meta tag or x-robots-tag prevents indexing.

Noindexed URLs are covered.

Ahrefs’ Indexability report includes this.

Remove ‘noindex’ from indexed pages.

4. Use https

HTTPS influences rankings.

HTTPS should be used.

HTTPS protects visitors’ data despite rankings. Contact forms require this. Must-have if you need passwords or payment info.

HTTPS?

5. Locked search bar Ensure your website is on one domain.

Your website shouldn’t be multi-accessible. This causes crawling, indexing, and security issues.

Four URLs to check with httpstatus.io:

http://yourdomain.com

http://www.yourdomain.com

https://yourdomain.com
https://www.yourdomain.com

Three should link to the fourth, hopefully.

301 redirect if not.

Ensure your accessible HTTPS version is secure. www.yourdomain.com

6. Ensure site speed

Obviously. Loading search results is annoying. Speed affects bounce rate.

GTMetrix and PageSpeed Insights measure website speed.

These tools check one page. Ahrefs’ Site Audit crawls all pages. Slow pages.

7. Mobile-friendly website

Mobile-friendly websites are crucial.

Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test evaluates sites.

8. Install a photo compressor

Image compression reduces page size. Google ranks pages by speed.

These are WordPress plugins. ShortPixel’s awesome. $100/month for image compression.

Use ShortPixel’s web app on other platforms.

9.Fix broken pages

Broken links affect website ‘authority’ and user experience.

Ahrefs finds broken links.

Site Audit spiders websites.

Internal 404 error reports

Link repair:

10. Eliminate duplicate content

Online duplicates are exact or nearly exact. Faceted navigation hurts ecommerce SEO. Duplicate content issues result.

Ahrefs finds duplicate content for free.

Site Audit spiders websites.

duplicate

Issues

Keyword list

Keyword research is SEO’s top priority. How can you optimise your content without keywords?

Start with this checklist.

1. Find a primary keyword to target

Each web page needs one keyword. You should do keyword research to find keywords to target, but you should also publish with the best keyword.

Best keyword?

Most people use it to search.

Consider protein powders. Using:

Protein powder

best protein supplements

These keywords:

A simple solution exists. Check Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer’s Parent Topic. Common search method.

2. Search intent

Intent drives search. Non-compliant pages won’t rank.

Search intent:

Examine Google’s top keyword results’ formats.

Based on URLs and titles, the top “marketing skills” results are blog posts. Listicle-heavy.

This keyword wouldn’t rank on a course page.

3. Evaluate Google ranking chances

Knowing the keyword’s difficulty helps you prioritise the opportunity.

Consider Keywords Explorer’s Difficulty score.

Not reliable. Find:

High-qualitybacklinks

Top 10 brands

Top sites’ topicality

How-to explains.

4. Research people’s questions

“SEO keywords” is searched. What other questions do people have besides wanting a definition? What else?

“People Also Ask” gives hints.

Use Ahrefs’ Content Gap tool to get ideas. This shows page keywords.

Then look for subtopic keywords. “Keyword examples” and “SEO keyword usage”

Content checklist

The right keyword is important, but bad content won’t help. Tips to improve your content.

1. Help the reader

Search intent tells you what a reader wants, so you can solve their problem.

Research follows.

Consider the visitor’s problem when writing.

“Working smarter” Searchers want a listicle-style blog post. “”Productivity tips” searchers want actionable advice.

Take more than breaks.

2. Write a great introduction

If you can’t convince readers in a few seconds, they’ll hit the back button.

Your best defence is a compelling intro.

Three things good intros do:

Readership

Trust-building User-problem solution

Visitors won’t read past the intro. They won’t convert, link, or share.

How to start a paper.

3. Create hierarchy using headings

H1 and H2 create hierarchy and logic. This makes reading easier.

There are five sections.

List SEO

SEO-checklist

Checklist

Page-level SEO

Checklist linkage

Each subheading has checkboxes.

Imagine not having subheadings.

H1 tags. SEO Tips 2021

4. Add images

Uninteresting text walls. It’s bouncy.

Images help readers understand text.

Graphs, charts, and screenshots illustrate our points.

5. Use short paragraphs

50% of Americans can’t read 8th grade.

Complexity alienates half the population. Concise.

Also, be clear.

Active writing

Hemingway can help. It grades and suggests improvements.

6. Add a TOC

It links to page sections.

Our posts include:

Tables of contents are best for long, difficult-to-navigate content. Our readers understand 2,000-word posts.

Table of contents helps get sitelinks.

On-page SEO checklist

On-page SEO optimises content. Visible and source code optimizations.

HOW?

1. Shorten your URL

Searchers benefit from short, descriptive URLs.

Two pages on weight loss.

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322345

Dietdoctor.com/how-to-lose-weight Not in the first URL.

Create short, descriptive URLs by using your keyword as the slug. This format is typical for blogs.

ahrefs.com/blog/on-page-seosahrefs.com/blog/link-buildingsahrefs.com/blog/free-seo-tools

SERPs truncate long URLs.

2. Create a catchy title tag

Google’s search results include page title tags.

Keywords belong in title tags.

Don’t stress over nonsensical things. Write clickable copy.

Titles usually work.

3. Create an engaging meta description

Google occasionally shows meta descriptions.

Best meta description tips.

Search intent counts

120-character limit

Keywords (where it makes sense) (where it makes sense)

4. Provide resources

Visitors can navigate with internal links.

Extras?

Mueller says linking helps users. Links help users learn more, check your sources, and understand your content’s answers.

5. Optimize photos

Follow the checklist to install an image compression plugin. Image optimizations page-by-page:

Image-description Screenshot-2021-06-01 should be IMG 875939.png. Black-puppy.png or eiffel-tower.jpg

alt-text Alt text replaces broken images. Screen-reader users benefit. Continued.

6. Add rich snippet schema markup

Schema markup improves SEO. It affects SERP rankings.

This page has the schema:”pizza dough recipe”

Difference?

Schema markup boosts website traffic and CTR.

Easy implementation. Google Markup Helper or Schema generator.

Rich Snippets 

7. Interlink

Google reads your page’s links. Search engines and visitors benefit.

We’ve discussed internal and external content links. Add internal links when publishing new content.

Find internal links:

Ahrefs is free.

Site Audit spiders websites.

Report Opportunities

Set the “Target page” filter.

Link to relevant pages.

Link building checklist

SEO needs links, especially for competitive keywords. This section discusses link-building.

SIDENOTE. Some of these strategies build backlinks to your entire site, while others target specific pages.

1. Copy rivals’ links

If a page links to your competitors but not you, pursue it.

Websites:

Chrome: “your brand”-(competitor 1 AND 2)

“Per domain”

This searches 7 billion pages for competitors, not you.

Then build links.

79 marketing tools may work for ConvertKit.

2.Reclaim lost links

Expiring backlinks.

The Ahrefs Lost Links report shows hundreds of lost links in the last week.

Diverse reasons. Permanent. They’re sometimes recoverable.

Regaining Lost Backlinks

3. Follow unlinked references

Sometimes brands aren’t linked. Not linked.

They mention Ahrefs but don’t link to us.

Not linking brand mentions would be cool.

Yes. Simply request “clickable text” They’ll change because they know your brand.

Find unlinked brand mentions.

Everything is explained.

Brand Mentions

4. Guest-post

Guest blogging involves writing for another website.

Ryan Stewart writes for Ahrefs:

Most websites link guest author bios.

Find guest blogging opportunities by searching relevant sites. Why? Because they may want a similar post.

These websites:

Ahrefs’s Content Explorer (e.g., “keyword research”)

“Search” “In title” “Sites”

Here are the top 100 topic-related websites.

5. Pitch resources

Topic-related resource pages are linked.

Google’s:

resources.html

com/resources intitle:resources.html

Digital marketing resource:

6. Find links to bad content

If you have the best content on a topic, others should be worse.

Linkers are link prospects.

This post defines long-tail keywords incorrectly (it’s not about length):

Site Explorer shows over 1,000 links.

We could contact them, explain the issue, and suggest they link to our long-tail keywords post.

Find similar backlinked posts.

Steps:

Navigator

Searching (e.g., long tail keywords)

Filter domain-heavy pages by title (linking websites)

Then convince people to link to your page.

7. Promote your content

Can’t link to unknown content. People should see your content.

Who’s correct?

Their differences are:

They like your content.

Links from them

Advice on contacting the right people.

Final thoughts

One SEO checklist can’t cover everything because SEO is ongoing. You’ll rank higher if you complete the above items. You’ll win. But…

Learn more about this checklist in our free SEO course.

By mihsalrankhigher

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