With the start of each year I do SEO housekeeping to make all my websites clean and neat. It helps make the old on-site issues get taken care of and improve my sites’ crawling, indexing and internal linking. Resolved to clean up your sites this year too? Let’s tackle one issue at a time with a simple check list below.
- Clean up robots.txt file to make sure there are no codes that are redundant or are blocking spiders to crawl pages you would like them to get indexed.
- Review the pagination on your site and make sure you implement canonicalization properly to avoid the possible duplicate content issues!
- Run a quick competition backlink analysis to identify potential link partners for your own sites, then add them to your 2011 link request list.
- Review Google Analytics, internal search log and Google Webmaster tool to identify long tail keywords. Add them to your existing keyword map.
- Rewrite title and meta tags based on the new keyword map.
- Review each category, media or product page on your site to make sure there are at least 3 internal outbound links with keywords as anchor text to other pages.
- Revisit your 404 error log to check if there are any broken links on your sites and redirect those high-clicked not-found urls to the proper pages. If the 404s are coming from other websites, write emails to those site owners and ask them to correct the urls.
- Update company & copyright information on the footer section and remove outdated sidebar links to avoid unnecessary link juice dilution.
- Use rank checking tools to identify keyword/pages that are ranking between #11-#30. Come up with a mini SEO plan to move them up to the first page by the end of this year.
- Read more SEO blogs, get more unique and high quality content posted on the sites and explore more places where you can build quality links.
The above is my New Year’s SEO cleaning list. What’s yours?