SEO is critical for all websites, no matter how small. After all, if people can’t find your website, you won’t be able to attract new customers.
As a result, many people want a best practices guide.
There are numerous SEO checklists available, but some are for local SEO, others for international SEO, and still others for E-commerce SEO.
What about a basic SEO checklist that covers most sites in most conditions without going into too much detail while still covering the must-haves? That is what this SEO checklist is for.
Throughout this checklist, I’ll also introduce you to some tools that I think will help you with your SEO work. Let’s get this party started!
These are the measures you should take to ensure that any content you publish on your website has the best chance of success. These are one-time use only, so they are intended for new sites only, but they serve as a reminder to all of us!
Sign up for Google Search Console
You will register your website with Google here. To do so, go to Google Search Console and sign in to your Google account. You’ll then give Google everything they need to get started.
You’ll be able to submit sitemaps and perform other maintenance tasks on the console over time.
Sign up for Bing Webmaster Tools.
In case you weren’t aware, Bing is a major search engine owned by Microsoft. Bing Webmaster Tools provides a wide range of site owner tools to assist you in getting indexed on Bing.
They also have SEO and other functions to help your site grow. To sign up, go to Bing Webmaster Tools and sign in with your Microsoft account.
Create an XML Sitemap and submit it to Google and Bing.
After you’ve registered your website, the next step in the SEO checklist is to create an XML sitemap.
This informs search engines about the URLs on your website, allowing them to index them more quickly. Indexing is the process by which your website is ranked on search engines. If you use WordPress, the Yoast SEO plugin will generate this for you automatically.
Google Analytics 4
Google Analytics is a free Google tool that every webmaster should have on their website.
GA provides a TON of data on anything and everything you’d want to know about your website visitors and how they interact with your site.
Site speed is an important ranking factor that many people overlook. The search engines penalize your site if it loads slowly. As a result, you should ensure that your site loads quickly.
Use Google Page Speed Insights to help you find ways to improve the speed of your website.
Design for Mobile
The quality of your site’s mobile browsing experience is another important ranking factor. Make sure your website looks good and is easy to navigate, even on mobile browsers.
Google is clearly pushing Mobile-First Indexing, and you should align your website with this trend to maintain or improve your search engine rankings.
WordPress Search Engine Optimization
Without a built-in tool, no SEO checklist would be complete. I recommend the Yoast SEO Plugin, which I mentioned earlier. Yoast offers useful on-page SEO tips and tricks.
External Search Engine Optimization
Off page SEO is in addition to site architecture and on page SEO. This is the process of determining how well your competitors are performing, checking backlinks, and improving social media competitiveness.
Serpstat is my recommendation for this, and I will demonstrate how to use it for other aspects of this SEO checklist and include screenshots from their tool in relevant sections below.
SEO Checklist for On-Page Content
Now that you’ve established your keyword strategy, you’re ready to begin creating SEO-optimized content with your target keyword.
SEO is just as important here as it was in the previous sections of this checklist, so here are the main items to check off this SEO checklist as you create content.
Incorporate the target keyword into the most relevant sections of your website.
Include it in your SEO title, SEO description, H1 title, some of your subheadings, and the first paragraph, in particular. Including your keyword here makes it easier for search engines to find.
Furthermore, earlier placement indicates the importance of that keyword in general
Keep your URL brief and include your target keyword.
People will find it more difficult to share your URL if it is too long. Although Twitter has a URL shortener, not all content distribution platforms do.
Furthermore, including the target keyword in your URL emphasizes its importance to both the search engine and the people who see the URL. This makes your page easier to find and remember
Improve the Speed of Your Images
Remember that if your website takes too long to load, it will automatically harm your SEO. Google and Bing dislike slow sites, and worse, people tend to abandon sites that do not load quickly.
When people leave, it raises the bounce rate and lowers your SEO rankings
Add Alt Tags to All Images
An alt tag is a text that appears behind images. The text describes your image and is useful for SEO because search engines can index it. Furthermore, alt tags provide a description that screen readers for the visually impaired can detect and will appear if the image fails to load.
Provide a link to reputable websites
Without mentioning domain authority, no SEO checklist would be complete. Sites with a high domain authority have been identified by search engines as being a major destinations for information on a specific topic.
By linking to these authoritative sites, you can help boost your own domain authority by establishing yourself as an expert. As a result, your ranking on the SERPs improves.
Include Internal Links to Your Strategic Content
Internal linking is another critical step in optimizing your SEO performance. This practice encourages readers to visit other pages, giving them more chances to see what your site has to offer.
Having customers linger on your website as a whole, especially for e-commerce and professional blogging sites, greatly increases overall effectiveness. Furthermore, the links improve your overall SEO.
LinkWhisper can help you do this effectively if you’re using WordPress.