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Galactic Fed 10 min read

FedHead Feature: SEO Operations Manager Aira & Why You Need an SEO Site Audit

Amber Rhodes photo

Written by Amber Rhodes

Communications Specialist @ Galactic Fed

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Expert reviewed by Dallin Porter

Communications Manager @ Galactic Fed

Published 27 Oct 2021

Aira Panganiban, Galactic Fed SEO Operations Manager, tells us about her journey into the SEO world and offers invaluable insights for businesses that want to grow their organic traffic for long-term growth. 

Everything You Need to Know About Technical SEO Audits

Aira was recently recognized in the first cohort of The FedHead Awardees, which honors inspiring team members who demonstrate above-and-beyond performance. For her contributions as a leader, go-getter, and all-around awesome team member in the Galactic Fed galaxy, Aira received the 2021 Rockstar Award.

As one of our first ever FedHead Awardees, we asked Aira to share more about her role at Galactic Fed, including how her work in SEO is critical for businesses and where she starts with a site audit for clients. Aira even provided some insider tips she uses for boosting organic search traffic.

Aira started working in SEO in 2017, but her ties with Galactic Fed go back further. She and Irina, co-founder of Galactic Fed, previously worked together at a different organization where they established a great working relationship that prompted Aira to join the Galactic Fed team.

When Aira first joined Galactic Fed, her main tasks included prospecting and quality assurance. However, she soon transitioned to a managerial role that pushed her to master technical SEO. Now Aira is applying her skills and expertise to performing site audits for Galactic Fed clients and boosting their organic traffic.  

SEO Is Always Evolving, and So Should Your Strategy 

Aira’s passion for SEO stems from the ever-changing nature of the work. Search engine algorithms are constantly evolving, meaning that SEOs are always paying attention to best practices and new tactics for organic growth just to stay on top of what is happening in the world of search! 

As Aira puts it, “The constant changes in SEO make everyday work more challenging and interesting.” 

This is also the reason it’s often difficult for small, busy companies to maintain an effective SEO strategy on their own. 

Why Every Business Needs to Invest in SEO

At Galactic Fed, SEO isn’t something that’s “nice to have.” SEO is a necessity. All businesses should use SEO in their marketing—“Of course!,” Aira chimes in—because it’s the best way to understand and reach potential customers. So ignore those unhelpful SEO myths you’ve heard floating around the digital marketing space, and take Aira’s advice: invest in organic traffic. 

SEO helps businesses improve their website user experience, which, in turn, helps build relationships with an audience. A bad user experience can turn a visitor away from your website indefinitely. A good user experience will leave a positive impression on your visitor and create a sense of loyalty for that visitor. 

As Aira put it: “More loyal customers mean more growth for your business.”

Our clients like the sound of that!

Not to mention, nearly two-thirds of online experiences begin with a search engine, and 28.5% of Google users click the first organic result on the SERP. There are a lot of incentives for improving SEO and giving growing businesses a competitive edge!

When it comes to investing in your SEO strategy, the best approach is to start early and update often. In the fast-paced world of digital marketing, SEO is like playing the long game. Your investment now will set you up for long-term success. That means you can expect more (inexpensive) organic traffic in the future that brings in high-quality leads. 

SEO Technical Audits Help Websites Achieve Maximum Results

SEO doesn’t have the same glitz and glamour as paid media usually does, so technical SEO needs don’t always stay at top of mind for businesses.  However, if a business wants to grow its organic traffic consistently, it will want to keep up with SEO best practices to achieve maximum results. 

According to industry experts like Aira, companies should do technical SEO audits because it will help determine whether your website is optimized for search engine traffic by:

  • Identifying broken links
  • Maintaining optimal page load speed time
  • Keeping an eye on user-friendliness
  • Analyzing the status of your website content

Since algorithms are constantly changing, businesses should regularly schedule a full website audit—at least quarterly, but ideally monthly. If there are any major updates or changes to your website in between audits (such as a template change, adding or removing sections of your site, or a site rebrand), you should conduct a technical audit to catch issues before they affect organic traffic. 

If a website is left unaudited, a business will miss critical issues that need to be addressed, resulting in lost opportunities for visibility and growth. 

Conducting a Technical SEO Audit the Galactic Fed Way

Aira’s process for conducting a technical SEO audit (a.k.a. The Galactic Fed Way) identifies SEO issues according to the impact they can have on a website. For example, a broken link on the website is considered a high-priority issue because it affects traffic and user experience. On the other hand, updating keyword density in website content is a low-priority issue.

The 5-Point Technical SEO Audit Checklist

  1. Find broken links and status code errors. Broken links are links on your website that simply don’t work. Cleaning up broken links adds value to your website by removing irrelevant or frustrating distractions for visitors. Getting rid of broken links can improve user experience and make content on your website easier for visitors and search engines to discover.
  2. Improve page speed optimization. Page load speed is important for SEO because it has a strong correlation with bounce rate. In other words, the longer a page takes to load, the more likely it is that the user will leave the site without interacting with it. Google will register this behavior as a “bounce,” which directly negatively affects search rankings. Identifying slow page load speeds with an audit helps site administrators catch pages where visitors are dropping off. The best place to start is Google PageSpeed Insights
  3. Improve mobile usability. Many website visitors will browse your site on their smartphones. This is why search engines care about the mobile-friendliness of your site. Mobile-friendliness is a direct ranking factor for Google, so it’s important to make sure that every key page type on your site passes Google’s mobile usability test. 
  4. Crawl your website to find easy-to-miss issues. Some site issues, like page speed, are hidden in plain sight. Other issues can only be uncovered using an SEO tool (unless you’re prepared to spend hundreds of hours manually auditing every element of your site). Screaming Frog, an SEO tool that provides insights into your website performance, allows you to view all of your website’s internal and external links, response codes, URLs, metadata, and directives…and that’s just scratching the surface. For an even more thorough audit, use a secondary SEO tool to cross-check your crawl report. 
  5. Conduct a user interface (UI) or user experience (UX) visual audit. Your website should be easy to navigate and enjoyable to browse. If users get frustrated with the layout or organization of your site, they may leave and never come back. The goal of the visual audit process is to identify those areas that are causing grief for site visitors and look for ways to help users accomplish the goals they want. A UX audit can improve more than your SEO rankings—you may also experience higher conversion rates, as well.

What to do After a Technical SEO Audit

A technical SEO audit helps businesses identify important issues with their sites. After that, it’s time to implement improvements. 

So how can you know which action items get first priority? SEO expert, Aira, indicates that it’s beneficial to report every issue identified in an audit. Using this information, she can categorize each action item according to its impact on the website’s health so that clients know exactly which high-impact points need immediate attention, and which can wait. 

What else should businesses do after an audit? According to Aira: be patient. It can take between six and twelve months to see improvements in traffic after making site changes. In the meantime, it’s important to stay patient and keep running regular audits to stay in Google’s good graces. 

Technical SEO Best Practices for Every Business

Finally, we asked Aira to share some technical SEO best practices that every business should follow. Here’s what she had to say:

  • Make sure you have a sitemap! Having a sitemap can improve your SEO, as they are essential for search engines to crawl and index your website.
  • Make sure pages you want people to find can be indexed in Google. If your pages aren’t properly indexed, they can be easily missed.
  • Set up redirects to current versions of a page when you set up a new page or update a URL. If businesses do not do this properly, their visitors may end up with a “page not found” error and leave the site. 
  • Always fix and update broken links to improve user experience. Broken or old links are a high-value, low-effort fix that almost anyone can do. 

Galactic Fed has a team of SEO experts like Aira who are helping companies across all industries grow their organic traffic using data and up-to-date best practices. For more information about conducting a technical SEO audit on your website, contact us today!

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Amber Rhodes photo

Amber Rhodes

Communications Specialist @ Galactic Fed

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