The SEO Roadmap

SEO RoadMap Checklist

Recurring SEO Tasks

STAGE 1 | Google Penalty Avoidance

Indexability

  • Noindex Page Scan

    A 'noindex' meta tag is used on a page to prevent it from search indexing.

  • 404 Error Repair

    This is one of the most common 4XX errors and indicates that the requested URL does not exist.

  • Canonical Redirection Review

    A redirecting URL specified as canonical can be misinterpreted by the search engines; such conflicting instruction can be ignored. As a result, wrong (non-canonical) page version can be indexed.

  • Canonical Points to 4XX Repair

    When the search engine crawler is not able to access the specified canonical page, this instruction will be ignored, and wrong (non-canonical) page version can be indexed.

  • Canonical Points to 5XX Repair

    5xx errors indicate a problem with your web server. You need to check with your hosting provider or with your web developers because your server may be overloaded or misconfigured.

  • Nofollow Page Scan

    Only use this tag on the pages you don't want search crawlers to follow links on. Otherwise, you should remove this tag.

  • Noindex Header Repair

    Pages where a 'noindex' directive is specified in the meta tag and in the HTTP response header (X-Robots tag).

  • Canonical Chain Check

    When a non-canonical page is specified as canonical page, this creates a so-called "canonical chain." Ex. Page A links to Page B that links to Page C from their 'rel=canonical' elements.

  • Nofollow Header Scan

    It is enough to implement a 'nofollow' either in the HTML meta tag or in the HTTP header. You don't need both.

  • Check for Noindex + Follow Page

    These pages will not be shown in search engines' results. But since they don't have a 'nofollow' tag, all links on them are supposed to be followed by search engine bots and pass "link juice."

  • Noindex + Nofollow Page Scan

    A 'noindex' directive instructs search engine crawlers not show a page in search results. A 'nofollow' directive instructs search engine crawlers not to follow the links on a page.

  • Review Canonical from HTTP to HTTPS

    Similar or duplicate pages of your website must have a 'rel=canonical' attribute to instruct search engines to show the most authoritative (canonical) version of the page in search results.

  • Review Canonical from HTTPS to HTTP

    Similar or duplicate pages of your website must have a 'rel=canonical' attribute to instruct search engines to show the most authoritative (canonical) version of the page in search results.

Redirects

  • 3XX Redirect Compliance

    Even though Google announced that any redirection method is good and will pass PageRank, Googlebot is not the only visitor of your website.

  • Redirect Loop Scan

    Redirect loop happens when a URL redirects to itself or when a redirect chain redirects to one of the URLs within the chain. This creates an infinite loop of redirects.

  • Broken Redirect Repair

    Redirects that point to a page returning one of the 4xx or 5xx HTTP response codes. These URLs can be accessed neither by your website visitors nor by the search engines crawlers.

  • Redirect Chain Repair

    Chaining redirects may inflict damage on the user experience, slowing down the page loading speeds. Redirect chains complicate your website's internal linking for the search engine crawlers.

  • Meta Refresh Redirect

    Google understands this client-side redirect. However, Google needs to parse the page first to see the destination URL, which can take some time. Meta refresh redirects are not supported by every browser. They may confuse your visitors or raise concerns about your website's security.

  • Check for 302 Redirect

    Both 302 and 301 redirects pass PageRank as announced by Google. 302 redirect is a temporary one by definition and should not be used where the redirection is permanent. If the redirection is permanent, replace the 302 redirects for these URLs with the 301 (Moved Permanently).

STAGE 2 | Critical Errors

Links

  • Orphan Page Audit

    Orphan pages of a website have no incoming internal links. Search engine crawlers can only discover such pages from the sitemap file or from external backlinks.

  • Scan for No Outgoing Links

    If a page has no outgoing links, it is a "dead end" for both website visitors and search engine crawlers.

  • Permalink Structure Review

    The URLs of your website should only contain the post name and preferably not a date or a string of numbers.

  • WWW Canonicalization Audit

    Both www and non-www versions of your URL are redirected to the same site.

  • Broken Link Check

    Pages on your website that link to internal or external URLs returning one of the 4xx or 5xx HTTP response codes. These links are widely known as "broken links."

  • Scan for Redirected Page has No Incoming Links

    The destination page of the redirect has no incoming internal links. In this case, there is no way your website visitors can access it from your website apart from a redirected URL.

  • HTTPS Page has Links to HTTP

    If an internal link on your website brings people to an HTTP URL, modern browsers will show a warning about a non-secure page. This can damage your overall website authority and user experience.

  • Repair - Page has Nofollow and Dofollow Internal Links

    A mixture of followed and nofollowed links to a page is most likely a mistake. An indexable page could get more "link juice" if all internal links to it were followed; followed links to the pages you don't want to be crawled and indexed simply waste the "link equity."

  • Check - Page has only Nofollow Incoming Internal Links

    Search engine bots won't be able to reach (and thus index) the pages via nofollowed links.

  • Canonical URL has No Incoming Internal Links Audit

    In case the URL has no incoming internal links, there’s no way for people to reach it while browsing your website.

  • Scan Pages for Links that Redirect

    For redirecting URLs on your website, this is not a problem, although we recommend linking to the destination page directly. However, a redirect on an external page you link to requires your attention.

  • Scan for Pages with only One Dofollow Incoming Internal Link

    The number of internal links pointing to a page is a signal to search engines about the relative importance of that page.

  • Nofollow Internal Links Scan

    Search engine crawlers will not follow (crawl) the "nofollow" links on your website and PageRank won't be passed.

  • HTTP Page has Links to HTTPS

    HTTPS is one of the ranking signals for Google. It is recommended to adopt HTTPS across your website.

STAGE 3 | Performance Issues

On-Page Optimization

  • SEO Title Audit

    We recommend using the Core Keyword as close to the beginning of the SEO Title as possible.

  • SEO Title Too Long - Repair

    Generally recommended title length is between 50 and 60 characters (max 600 pixels).

  • SEO Title Too Short - Repair

    Generally recommended title length is between 50 and 60 characters (max 600 pixels).

  • Meta Description Audit

    Google sometimes uses <meta> tag content to generate snippets, if they think they give users a more accurate description than can be taken directly from the page content. Facebook, for example, will use <meta> tag content for link preview if the page has no 'og:description' tag.

  • Meta Description Too Long - Repair

    A general recommendation today is to keep your page description between 110 and 160 characters, although Google can sometimes show longer snippets.

  • Meta Description Too Short - Repair

    A general recommendation today is to keep your page description between 110 and 160 characters, although Google can sometimes show longer snippets.

  • Page URL Audit

    While it is possible to rank for keywords that are not in the Page URL, it definitely helps to have the Core Keyword present in the URL.

  • Check - Core Keyword Appears in the first 10% of Content

    The Core Keyword should appear closer to the beginning of the content.

  • Content Audit - Core Keyword

    It's important to have the Core Keyword present in the content more than once.

  • Word Count Scan

    This is a highly debated topic, but we recommend using at lease 600 words for every page on the website.

  • Word Count Review

    Pages with low word count are not likely to give good coverage of the topic for the search engines.

  • Image Alt Attribute Audit

    The alt attribute is used to describe your image. Search engines will use it to understand the content of your image files. Also, this text will be shown on your page if the image cannot be displayed.

  • Subheading Review

    It is recommended to add the focus keyword as part of at least one subheading in the content.

  • Page Speed Loading Scan

    Pages on your website where HTML code took a long time to load.

  • Page Timed Out Repair

    Response from the server was not received on time when requesting a page or resource.

  • Look for Missing Meta Tags

    Without a meta description, you're missing the opportunity to present the summary of your page content to the search engines.

  • Check for Missing Title Tags

    Page title will be displayed in search results and it will show up as a name of a browser's tab for those who visit your web page.

  • Multiple Title Tags Audit

    Although multiple title tags probably wouldn't cause problems for Google today, this is always a confusion because only one title will be picked to be displayed in the search results and in the browser's tab. Multiple title tags are a relic of old black-hat SEO and won't add authority to your pages.

  • Multiple Meta Description Tags Check

    A meta description tag is generally used to inform the search engine with a short, informative summary of what your page is about. High-quality descriptions can sometimes be displayed in Google's search results as search snippets, helping you get higher click-through rates from SERPs.

  • Scan for Missing H1 Tags

    H1 tag is the top level heading of the page. Although it is not as crucial as your page title, an H1 heading is a strong component of your on-page SEO. It helps search engines better understand the content on your page and its overall topic.

  • Public Blog Review

    It is important to have a publicly accessible blog for your visitors and crawlers.

  • Site Tagline Check

    While it isn't used on all websites and themes, some search engines and website directories will use the text in this field.

  • Check HTML File Size

    Although HTML code is pure text, it may slow down your pages, when its size is excessively large.

  • Check for Non-Compressed Assets

    To reduce the size of data transferred from the web server to the user's browser, compression should be used for text-based assets: CSS, JavaScript, and HTML.

Localization Optimization Audits

  • HTML lang attribute invalid

    Although Google might not be using the HTML lang attribute today, other search engines and programs, such as screen readers, do to understand the language of the page.

  • More than one page for same language in hreflang

    Announcing different pages for the same language (or language-location) in hreflang annotations can confuse search engines.

  • Page referenced for more than one language in hreflang

    This gives contradictory instructions to search engines as of which version of a page to show based on user's language preferences.

  • Hreflang annotation invalid

    Hreflang helps search engines to point users to the most appropriate version of your page, depending on users' language and region.

  • Missing reciprocal hreflang (no return-tag)

    Confirmation (return) links are missing for the pages declared in hreflang annotations.

  • Self-reference hreflang annotation missing

    To indicate multiple language/location versions of a page to the search engines, each language version of a page must list itself as well as all other language versions.

  • Hreflang to non-canonical

    Linking to a non-canonical version of a page from hreflang annotations can mislead search engines.

  • Hreflang to redirect or broken page

    If hreflang URL does not point to a valid live page, hreflang annotations may be ignored or not interpreted correctly.

  • Hreflang and HTML lang mismatch

    Pages with different language codes declared in HTML language attribute and in hreflang annotation for the URL.

  • Hreflang defined but HTML lang missing

    Although Google might not be using the HTML lang attribute today, other search engines and browsers do.

  • HTML lang attribute missing

    Pages where the <html lang=""> language attribute is missing.

Image Optimization

  • Check for Broken Images

    Broken images on your pages will negatively affect the user experience, while search engines will not be able to index these images in their search results.

  • Image Size Audit

    Images often account for most of the page size and thus can be the main reason for slow pages on your website.

  • Missing Alt Text Repair

    The alt attribute is used to describe your image. Search engines will use it to understand the content of your image files. Also, this text will be shown on your page if the image cannot be displayed.

  • Check for Redirected Image

    This forces web browsers and search engine crawlers to make an additional HTTP request in order to reach the destination image URL. On a vast scale, this can increase page loading times for your website.

  • Image Redirects Review

    Some image URLs on your website redirect to another URL.

Internal Page Optimization

  • Timed Out Analysis

    Response from the server was not received on time when requesting a page or resource. This may damage your website crawlability (and thus indexability) and have a negative impact on the user experience.

  • 5XX Errors Evaluation

    These URLs can't be accessed by your website visitors or by the search engines crawlers. Crawlers will be forced to abandon the request while people will most likely leave your website.

  • 404 Error Scan

    This is one of the most common 4XX errors and indicates that the requested URL does not exist.

  • 4XX Error Repairs

    4xx HTTP status codes indicate that the requested page or resource cannot be accessed. 401 - Unauthorized, 403 - Forbidden, 408 - Request Timeout, and 404 - Not Found are the most common "Client Errors".

  • HTTPS/HTTP Mixed Content Assessment

    Mixed content occurs when initial HTML is loaded over a secure HTTPS connection, but resource files (images, CSS, or JS) are loaded over an insecure HTTP connection.

JavaScript Optimization

  • Broken JavaScript Assessment

    JavaScript files that cannot be loaded. Broken JS files will negatively impact user experience on your pages. Besides, they can lower your pages' authority in the eyes on the search engines. Google, for example, is able to understand and render JS files.

  • HTTPS page links to HTTP JavaScript Repair

    This issue is an instance of mixed content that occurs when HTML pages load over a secure HTTPS connection but link to resources (images, CSS, or JS) over an insecure HTTP connection.

  • Redirected JavaScript Analysis

    Some pages on your website link to JavaScript files via a redirect. This forces web browsers and search engine crawlers to make an additional HTTP request in order to reach the destination JS file URL. On a vast scale, this can increase page loading times for your website.

  • JavaScript Redirect Evaluation

    If you decide to keep the links to redirecting URLs that do not belong to your website, make sure that the destination JS files are relevant.

CSS Optimization

  • HTTPS page links to HTTP CSS Repair

    Some browsers block insecure resource requests by default. If your page depends on these insecure resources, then your page might not work properly when they get blocked.

  • Redirected CSS Analysis

    Some pages on your website link to CSS files via a redirect. This forces web browsers and search engine crawlers to make an additional HTTP request in order to reach the destination CSS file URL. On a vast scale, this can increase page loading times for your website.

  • Broken CSS Assessment

    Some pages on your website link to CSS file URLs that return one of the 4xx or 5xx HTTP status codes to our crawler. Broken CSS files will not apply the necessary styles to your pages.

  • CSS Redirects Evaluation

    Some CSS files' URLs on your website redirect to another URL. This forces web browsers and search engine crawlers to make an additional HTTP request in order to reach the destination URL. On a vast scale, this can increase page loading times for your website.

  • CSS File Size Scan

    CSS files on your website that are larger than 15 kB.

  • CSS Broken Examination

    CSS files are plain-text files used for formatting content on web pages. If a CSS file cannot be accessed, the content on your web page will not be rendered properly, damaging the user experience on your website.

Miscellaneous Optimization

  • Noindex page in sitemap

    Pages with a noindex meta tag included in sitemap. Sitemap must list all the pages you want search engines to crawl and index, while a noindex meta tag instructs search engine bots not to index a page. Such a combination is contradictory.

  • 3XX redirect in sitemap

    Sitemap must list all the pages you want search engines to crawl and index. Redirecting URLs in sitemaps can result in indexability issues on your website.

  • 3XX page receives organic traffic

    This can happen when you set up a redirect on your website but search engines have not noticed it yet. Before search engines re-crawl the redirecting URL, they will be showing it in search results.

  • Noindex page receives organic traffic

    If a noindexed page receives organic search traffic, search engines are not following this directive for some reason.

  • 403 page receives organic traffic

    403 (Forbidden) HTTP response code indicates that the crawler was not permitted to access the resource during the crawl. Given that the page receives organic traffic, it might have changed its status to 403 not so long ago.

  • 4XX page receives organic traffic

    This can happen when you deleted or moved pages without setting up redirects while search engines have not yet removed them from their index.

  • Page from sitemap timed out

    URLs in the sitemap file did not get the response from the server on time.

  • 4XX page in sitemap

    4xx pages in the sitemap send a confusing signal to search engines, asking them to crawl and index “dead” or forbidden pages. This can result in indexability issues on your website.

  • 403 page in sitemap

    Search engines will not be able to crawl (and index) the pages they do not have access to.

  • 5XX page in sitemap

    5xx URLs in sitemaps cannot be accessed by crawlers. This can result in search engines ignoring your sitemaps. In this case, you might end up with some indexability issues on your website.

  • Non-canonical page in sitemap

    Sitemap files must list the pages you want search engines to crawl and index. All pages listed in a sitemap are suggested as canonicals for the search engines.

  • Double slash in URL

    Most servers are set up to ignore a double slash in the URL path. However, such URLs may be confusing for search engines as they will be interpreted as stand-alone URLs, which can result in duplicate content issues.

Recurring SEO Tasks

SEO Check-Ups
Monthly SEO Check-Up
  • Alt Text Verification

  • Keyword Ranking Report
  • Backlinks Report
  •  

Quarterly SEO Check-Up
  • Link Audit

  • Broken Link Check
  • Image Optimization Audit
  • Competitor Keyword Research

Annual SEO Check-Up
  • Site Structure Audit

  • Security Audit
  • Keyword Research
  •  

SEO Content Tasks

Keyword Research
4 credits per website
Keyword Research is the process of discovering the supply/demand data for any given search term. It is considered to be the backbone of SEO (search engine optimization).
 
Keyword Research is best done during the planning portion of any website, but it also serves as a fantastic barometer for already established websites as well.
 
This is how we will discover the best opportunities for growth, find the lowest hanging fruit, and revitalize the content/marketing strategy of your business.
 
  • Use Keyword Explorer (ahrefs) to find 200 keywords.
  • Categorize the 200 keywords into buckets according to topic. 
  • Define the Core Keyword, Secondary Keyword, and Accessory Keywords
  • Create Title Tags for each piece of content
Competitor Keyword Research
4 credits per competitor
After being supplied with your competitor(s), we can do comprehensive keyword research to better understand what types of marketing strategy they are doing, which keywords they are targeting, how effective their marketing efforts have been so far, and which areas your business is likely to rank over your competition.
 
  • Find the top 25 keywords the competitor is currently ranking for
  • Create a list of 50 keywords that the competitor is ranking for that the client is not. 
  • Create a list of 25 keywords that the competitor is trying to rank for that the client could easily win.
  • Find the top 10 performing articles related to the client’s competitor for outreach potential.
2000 Word SEO Content
4 credits
Content Marketing is one of the most effective ways to establish authority in any industry. In addition to benefiting SEO with keywords, blog posts also provide the perfect opportunity to create informative resources that other websites will want to link to!
 
This service will optimize your blog post for your core keyword + 10 secondary keywords! The amount of words can be split into multiple content pieces (1000 word page + 2 500 word pages, for example).
 
  • 1000 word blog post
  • Basic subject research
  • Keyword research used to identify the best keyword for your post
  • 5 royalty free images with SEO optimized meta-data
  • 3 internal links (added by us)
  • On-page SEO optimization 
  • Core Keyword optimizations + 10 Secondary/Accessory keywords (added by us)
  • SEO optimized meta descriptions
1 Minute Explainer Video
4 credits

Video content is now more important than ever, but video is also the most difficult/expensive form of content to create. The good news is that we can convert your existing blog posts into explainer videos!

 

  • Intro/Summary video
  • Ready to upload file
  • Script included
  • Choose M or F voice
  • Branded animation
3 Minute Explainer Video
6 credits

Video content is now more important than ever, but video is also the most difficult/expensive form of content to create. The good news is that we can convert your existing blog posts into explainer videos!

 

  • Will cover all points of your content
  • Ready to upload file
  • Script included
  • Choose M or F voice
  • Branded animation
5 Minute Explainer Video
8 credits

Video content is now more important than ever, but video is also the most difficult/expensive form of content to create. The good news is that we can convert your existing blog posts into explainer videos!

 

  • Will cover all points of your content
  • Ready to upload file
  • Script included
  • Choose M or F voice
  • Branded animation
Inbound Links
2 credits per link
Inbound Links are the Gold Standard of SEO practices. Each link coming into your website has a unique value determined by how authoritative the source website is in Google's eyes.
 
There are roughly a dozen different metrics that go into link quality and all of the top ranking websites prioritize link building for their SEO strategy.
 
The problem is that Inbound Links can be a pain to get: Outreach is time-intensive, it's hard to find quality blogs to link to, and it's hard to tell valuable links from low-quality links.
 
Let us handle all of the hassle with our unique approach of writing content specifically tailored towards getting your business an inbound link.
 
  • Includes a 500 word blog post
  • Anchor text + target URL
  • DA/DR 20+
  • Keyword research used to identify the best keyword for your post
  • 3 royalty-free images (added by us)
  • On-page SEO optimization 
  • 3 internal links (added by us)
  • 1 inbound link
The SEO Roadmap 1

“I guarantee your team will love working with us. Try a block of credits, and if you are unhappy for any reason, we’ll refund all unused hours, no questions asked.”

Mateo Baisden

Principal | Director
The SEO Roadmap 2

We're Trusted. Experienced. And Passionate about being part of your team.

But don't take our word for it. We have 14 years of agency relationships to prove it...