We are heading towards 2023 & if you’re still using the SEO techniques of 2011, your website is bound to fall. SEO keeps changing with time & new updates and algorithms. It is on us to keep pace with it.
Having a website is all okay, but what if it isn’t visible anywhere? No point, right? That’s why you need SEO Experts who are updated with the latest trends.
Since you are here, we’ll help you with an SEO checklist to grow organic traffic to your business in 2023.
Here’s Your SEO Checklist For 2023
1. SEO Basics Checklists
Set up GSC & Bing webmaster tools
If you want your website to be found in search engines, it is essential to set up webmaster tools with both Google Search Console (GSC) and Bing. By doing this, you can ensure that your website is being indexed correctly and that there are no errors that could prevent your website from being found.
To set up GSC, go to https://search.google.com/search-console/about and sign in with your Google account. Once you’re signed in, you can add your website by clicking on the “Add a property” button. You will then need to verify ownership of your website; this can be done through various methods, such as adding a meta tag to your site’s homepage or uploading an HTML file to your server.
Bing Webmaster Tools works similarly; go to https://www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster and sign in with a Microsoft account. Once you’re signed in, click on the “AddSite” button and follow the instructions to verify ownership of your website.
Once both GSC and BingWT are set up, you can begin monitoring your website’s performance in search engines and troubleshooting any issues that may arise.
Set up Google Analytics
If you want to track your website’s traffic and performance, Google Analytics is a must-have tool. Luckily, setting up Google Analytics is quick and easy.
First, create a Google account if you don’t already have one. Then, go to the Google Analytics website and click “Sign in” in the top right corner.
Enter your Google account email and password, then click “Sign in.” On the next page, select “Create a new account.”
Fill out the form with your account name, website name, website URL, and time zone. Then select the tracking you want: Universal Analytics or Classic Analytics. For most users, Universal Analytics will be the best choice.
Once you’ve made your selection, click “Get Tracking ID.” You’ll be presented with your Tracking ID and some code that needs to be added to your website.
Copy and paste the code into the header of every page on your site that you want to track. If you use a content management system like WordPress, some plugins can help make this process easier. Once the code is added to your site, Google Analytics will start tracking data about your visitors!
Install & configure an SEO plugin (WordPress)
Several SEO plugins are available for WordPress, but we recommend Yoast SEO. It’s a comprehensive plugin that covers all the basics of SEO and is easy to use.
To install Yoast SEO:
1. Log into your WordPress site and go to the Plugins section.
2. Search for “Yoast SEO” and install the plugin.
3. Once the plugin is installed, click on “Activate.”
4. After activating the plugin, you will be redirected to the Yoast SEO Dashboard. Here you can configure the plugin settings.
5. We recommend that you start by going to the General Settings tab and entering your site name, description, and keywords.
6. Next, go to the Titles & Metas tab and configure the settings for titles and metas.
7. Once you have configured the general settings, you can continue configuring the individual settings for each post and page on your site.
Setting up the tools
- Google Search Console
- Google Analytics
- Webmaster tools
- Yoast SEO/Rank Math
2. On-page SEO Checklist
Always include your targetted keyword in the URL. It helps Google to understand what your page is about and what keyword to make it rank on. This also helps in increasing the CTR of your website.
It would help if you also kept in mind that the URL should be short & clean. Avoid using excessive numbers or symbols. Short URLs rank better on Google!
Let’s talk about the title tag & keywords here.
The number 1 thing you must know is to include your targeted keyword in the title. Along with that, always make sure to add it at the top of your page.
Another thing you can do for high CTR & better ranking is to add terms like “best,” “checklist,” “guide,” and the current year in the title (like ours). When you add the current year, google knows that your content is updated & will place it above the old content.
Everybody knows how crucial formatting is for the content. But the question is how do you decide the order. Well, the order for headings is:
H1 -> H2 -> H3 -> H4
Suppose you have a point to write in h2 and a subheading below it; for the subheading, you will use h3, and then again, the next point will be in h2.
Note: H1 is used only once in the content.
Tip: Always include your keyword in the headings.
Yes, google can’t see images as humans do. So, to make google understand what the image is about, we optimize the images. How?
Alt tags & file names.
Do not just copy-paste the image into the content.
Always rename it before posting & include the keyword.
Next, when you put the image in the content, write the alt text the same as the file name.
That’s it. You’re done! These points will also help your image rank on Google Images and drive more traffic.
Keywords & LSI
LSI is Latent Semantic Indexing which means using keyword-related terms in the content. It’s not 2011 that you can stuff your keyword in every line.
In no time, google will penalize your website if you do keyword stuffing. The better way in 2022 is to use synonyms & LSI keywords in your content. The idea is to let Google know what you’re talking about without spamming.
There are two types of linking you must do:
1. External linking means you link to high authority & credible websites to back the facts you’ve stated in the content. It increases your credibility, and google knows that you’re an expert in the content you publish.
2. Internal linking means your link to your blogs & pages within your content. This helps google in crawling essential pages of your website. Internal linking has a significant impact on keyword rankings as well. Make sure to do it strategically.
3. Technical SEO Checklist
If you’re still using the HTTP version, high time you switch to HTTPS. Having an SSL certificate is not only a matter of security but also a ranking factor on google.
Not sure what version you are using. Just check whether there’s a lock at the URL bar. When you click on it, it says secured connection. If not, time to update.
Check for duplicate versions.
There are many versions of websites available, like:
Always ensure that whatever version you choose for your website, the other ones must redirect to the primary ones. Let google index one version of your website.
Site speed is a major factor in deciding whether your customer will buy from you. You don’t want your audience to click the cross button because your site takes time to load.
This is, in fact, a significant ranking factor too. When google knows your audience isn’t taking any action, your website is bound to fall in the rankings. In 2021, google confirmed that page experience would be a huge ranking factor.
Make sure the website speed is fast on mobile and desktop versions.
In 2022, Google has given the greatest priority to user experience. And broken links are signs of poor user experience. Nobody wants to visit a website that doesn’t show the desired results.
Now you know why you must fix the broken links asap.
Rise in mobile usage; In mid-2019, Google switched to mobile-first indexing for all sites. If your website is not mobile-friendly, your ranking will fall simply because this again comes under user experience.
Note that there is a difference between websites seen on desktop and mobile. The good thing is that you can see the issues in Google Search Console.
Google must navigate your website easily. A properly structured website enables users to navigate the website easily.
Crawlability & Indexing
Go to the Google search console and check the coverage. Fix all the errors & focus on warning signs. It will show you the blocked robot.txt pages.
Google cannot index the sites that are now crawlable.
Make sure the important pages are indexed in the google database. Check in the coverage report whether there is any ‘noindex’ tag.
4. Content Checklist
In SEO, the content game has changed to a great extent in the last ten years. In 2022, the google algorithm keeps a check on the content to the extent that it is now penalizing the websites that it thinks to be spam.
Now you know why you must provide high-quality content. Do not worry; here’s a checklist for your ease.
- Put out original stories
- Use the headings properly
- Link to authority sites
- Use proper meta tags
- Keep performing content audit
- Keyword stuffing
- Plagiarised Content
- Keyword cannibalization
5. Link Building Checklist
Love it or hate it, link building is an essential part of SEO. In simple terms, it means that the more website linking to yours, the more authority you will have in the search engines.
Not to forget, link building is not the primary thing to follow but also not something your business can ignore after reaching a particular stage. It is important to note that link-building has also changed drastically in the past few years.
Here’s a correct & genuine way to build links
The first thing you can do is, identify websites similar to your niche. Reach out to them to gain links in exchange for good-quality content
Second, Analyze your competitor’s link profile to outrank them. Reach out to websites that link to your competitor but not you. The competition is the number of referring domains between you & your competitors.
6. Off-Page SEO checklist
Off-page SEO is optimizing your web pages to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). The main goal of off-page SEO is to build links to your website.
There are many ways to build links, but not all methods are created equal. Some techniques, like link buying, can hurt your website’s ranking. That’s why it’s essential to carefully consider your link-building strategy and use only white hat methods.
To help you get started, we’ve put together an off-page SEO checklist of tried-and-true link-building tactics:
Create high-quality content.
Creating compelling, shareable content is one of the best ways to earn natural links to your website. Make sure your content is well-researched and relevant to your audience.
Reach out to influencers and ask for mentions.
If you know of any influencers in your industry, reach out and ask if they would be willing to mention or link to your website in their next blog post or social media update. Most influencers are happy to help other businesses in their field if the request is made politely and without strings attached.
Guest posts on other blogs.
Guest posting is a great way to get your name and website in front of a new audience while earning valuable backlinks. When writing a guest post, ensure it’s of the highest quality and adds value to your blog.
Participate in forums and comment on blogs.
When participating in industry-related forums or leaving comments on other people’s blogs, make sure your comments are relevant and insightful. You can also include a link to your website in your signature or profile, as long as it’s not too spammy.
Submit your website to directories.
Submitting your website to online directories is easy to build links, but only if you choose quality directories related to your specific field or niche. Submitting your website to irrelevant directories can hurt your ranking instead of helping it.
Take advantage of social media marketing.
Social media platforms offer great opportunities for businesses to get their name out there and earn natural links from other users who share their content. Ensure you’re actively promoting your content on all major social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Run a link-building campaign with outreach emails.
Reaching out directly to bloggers, influencers, and websites in your industry is one of the most effective link-building methods, but it can also be very time-consuming. Use an outreach email template and track your progress to ensure you get the best results possible.
Wrapping it up
SEO is an ever-changing thing. To keep up with good rankings & conversions, one must not try to fool the algorithm but walk with it. Here we gave an entire SEO checklist for 2023, whether for content, on-page SEO, or off-page optimization. Follow this checklist for the best SEO results.
Improve your SEO presence with Seahawk with our managed SEO services, where we help boost your organic rankings & outrank your competitors. With Seahawk, Site monitoring + SEO + tracking results = Better ranking & conversions
Contact us now to leave your competitor behind!