eCommerce website audit checklist

eCommerce Website Audit Checklist for Beginners, 7 Things

Having an eCommerce website audit checklist will help a beginner to improve and grow. In the age of content, simply having an eCommerce website to cater to different countries won’t cut it. With innumerable competitors selling online, it may be challenging to generate sales immediately if your customers don’t have a positive experience using your website. Plus, several impediments could prevent your site from hitting your sales targets. This article will share some ideas on the eCommerce website audit checklist you can apply easily.

A website audit is the only way to evaluate its performance, as it offers detailed insights into various issues that users typically encounter. You only need a checklist for auditing your eCommerce website to increase traffic and conversions.

eCommerce website audit checklist: 7 Things to Remember

  1. Technical audit

eCommerce websites have a dynamic nature and complex structure. As such, you may face unique challenges in ensuring your website is crawlable and indexable. In performing the technical eCommerce audit, address the following elements:

 

  • XML sitemaps

    The XML sitemap serves as a map of your website for search engines to crawl. A valid XML sitemap should be automatically updated as you add or delete pages and only contain URLs you want to be indexed.

 

  • txt file

    The “robots.txt” file guides search engines on what parts of your site they should crawl. This file can highlight essential pages and block irrelevant details when search engines crawl it.

    The “crawl stats” in Google Search Console can be helpful in your technical audit. It can generate a report about Google’s crawling history on your website, such as server responses and availability issues encountered.

    Including your sitemap’s location in the robots.txt file will help crawlers find it as a part of the eCommerce website audit checklist. At the bottom of the file, add the line: “Sitemap: https://www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml.”

  1. Page speed audit

One of the most critical elements of a website is its speed. If an eCommerce website takes too long to load, users may leave without returning, resulting in a potential lead or profit loss. A page speed audit will look at your website’s overall loading speed and advise you on how to improve it.

Slow-loading pages will eventually be penalized in organic search results, so site speed is an important consideration in search engine rankings. Relevant tools can assist you in identifying elements that are causing your website to slow down, such as unoptimized images, coding issues, excessive plugins, etc.

  1. Mobile-friendly audit

Mobile-friendly websites are a priority for Google’s algorithm, and having one is critical for maintaining a high SEO ranking.

In today’s hyper-competitive digital environment, a mobile-friendly website boosts the probability of sales and conversions. Most users shop online using their smartphones. A good eCommerce website provides users with a seamless mobile experience that allows them to navigate the products easily.

With most users searching on mobile, providing results that work on mobile and desktop can ensure the best user experience. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of tools to test your website’s mobile friendliness.

  1. Email configuration audit

Companies use email to distribute newsletters, promotions, or engaging content for brand awareness or increased sales. While this is a good practice, these emails serve no purpose if they do not reach your customers’ inboxes because they were flagged as spam.

Email domain validation is necessary to determine whether an email address is valid. Although your company email may contain all the right words, such as your company name, this validation goes beyond syntax and checks a domain’s mail exchange (MX) record.

When an email server receives many messages from an unverified domain, it may flag the domain as a potential spam source. Multiple spam suspicion reports can cause spam filters to block or tag your mail server.

Again, you could leverage tools to help you check for problems with email configurations.

  1. Titles and meta descriptions audit

Title tags and meta descriptions are codes that assist search engines in understanding the content of a page. These are typically displayed whenever that page appears in search engine results.

Compelling meta descriptions can increase the number of people who click on your links. Every piece of content on your website should have a unique meta description and include relevant keywords to your business.

You can choose from various SERP preview tools to verify if your titles and meta descriptions stay within the character limit so that search engines can display them fully. The recommended character limits are 50–60 for titles and 150 characters or fewer for meta descriptions.

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  1. Content audit

Content is the foundation of any website in the information age. More traffic and conversions can result from informative and engaging content.

Search engines can suggest your web pages to browsers more accurately if they have enough knowledge about the content on your website. Content audits help you decide what content to create, update, rewrite, or delete. It also helps identify areas of your website that need optimization for search engine rank.

Because eCommerce websites have hundreds of products, they are more prone to duplicate content. You can avoid this problem by creating unique product descriptions.

You can audit your content using tools that assist you in updating your content, improving the rank of your web pages, and making the website you present to readers easy to navigate and error-free.

  1. Backlink audit

A backlink is a link on another website’s content that points to a page on your website. However, the quality of linking sites is far more critical than the quantity. A massive proportion of credible external domains pointing to your site increases its authority and boosts its ranking. Therefore, your site audit should prioritize backlink quality over backlink quantity.

Examine your backlinks and the pages they lead to as part of your eCommerce website audit. If they’re linking to an out-of-date or broken URL, redirect them to a page on your site that is still relevant.

Backlinks can backfire in rare cases. Your organic search ranking may suffer if your eCommerce website has many “toxic” links from untrustworthy or harmful sites.

To avoid such harmful links, you must proactively notify Google that you do not want your site to be associated with these external sources using tools designed for this purpose.

The Importance of eCommerce Website Audit

A website audit enables businesses to identify and resolve areas with underlying issues, which is especially important for eCommerce platforms where customer experience is an essential factor. Here are three reasons why you need a website audit to provide the best service possible:

  • Customers go to websites that are easy to use. Creating and maintaining a website is complex, and you cannot keep an eye out for every error. An audit will reveal any errors that may exist on your website.
  • Customers shop using various browsers and devices. Your eCommerce platform must perform well on mobile as the world embraces smartphones. Making sure your website performs equally well across all browsers and devices is essential to your audit.
  • Customers do not scroll; they search. A good search should be fast, leading to a better shopping experience and less customer frustration. Your audit will also describe how your website competes with thousands of products or services in search results.

All things considered, it’s in your best interest to conduct regular eCommerce website audits, zeroing in on the items listed above.

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