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The local SEO audit is crucial to boost your website’s rankings on the search engine. In fact, the percentage of local searches on Google is nearly 46%. This statistic implies that if you don’t focus on local SEO, you are more likely to miss meeting your potential customer’s needs. 

Many local people are searching for local goods and services. But if you are not aware of the importance of local SEO, you are more likely to miss all these opportunities. Due to Your site’s poor local SEO, your searchers will not find you or reach you. 

However, you can easily make up for this situation by focusing on your local search audit. Local SEO significantly increases the presence of your business in local searches. Moreover, it attracts more clients and customers to your business. Therefore focus on the Local SEO factor. Keep going through this guide, and you will learn more about it. 

What Is A Local SEO Audit?

Local SEO audit assesses your website’s performance on search engine results. The audit helps to evaluate how your site is performing and how you can improve its ranking. Providing you with the guide to enhance the ranking helps your business’s more conversions and generate more revenue.

Simply the local SEO audit diagnoses the weakness and strengths of your website. By making effective adjustments, you can get more visitors to your site through this diagnosis.

Why Should You Carry Out A Local SEO Audit?

An SEO audit thoroughly checks all those elements, which comprises the local pack ranking and local search strategy. You can get a clear picture of your site’s performance by conducting an audit. Also, you can easily find current opportunities and problems on your site.

For example, your site’s traffic has suddenly disappeared or lost its rankings. Now how you will know what the reasons behind it are. You can easily find out the reasons for your site’s sudden traffic or ranking change by conducting a local SEO audit. Moreover, carrying out an audit is necessary because it helps increase your site’s traffic and business profit.

Consider SEO audit as your site’s systematic health check. In other words, for performing your site’s local SEO analysis, an audit is a great option. Without hastily jumping, an audit helps you to find the problem or area of concern easily and allow you to solve them quickly.

What Is Included In An SEO Audit?

Local SEO algorithm contains three key areas, and those are:

  • Proximity: The first concern in an SEO audit is the closeness or distance of your potential clients from your business. Proximity measures how distant or close your search users are from your business.
  • Prominence: Is your business brand prominent online? Or how prominent is it? For example, do you have colossal article mentions, inbound links, citations, or reviews? Analysis of all these matters is also included in the audit.
  • Relevance: Finally, the most important thing is your business’s relevancy. Is the term your users search for relevant to your business?

Local SEO Audit Checklist

While conducting the SEO audit, you have to deal with and review numerous factors. Therefore if you already make a checklist of all those factors in different categories, it will be better and more accessible for you to analyze them. However, the audit checklist, in general, includes the following:

  • Local keyword research
  • Google Penalties
  • Citations
  • Rankings
  • Google business profile
  • Links & website authority
  • Social media
  • Implied links/ brand mentions
  • Ratings and reviews

How To Perform The Ultimate Local SEO Audit?

First, create a document or spreadsheet for each of the above-mentioned points in the checklist. Now, conduct the local SEO audit and input the finding in your document or excel sheet. Keeping a record of all these items will help you build your audit successfully. 

Moreover, after completing the audit, you will be easily able to compare each of the factors. But to do all these, first, you have to conduct the audit. And to carry it out, the easy steps are the following:

Check For Google Penalties

The most crucial factor that significantly affects your site’s SEO performance and undermines it is the Google penalty. According to the research, when Google triggered a penalty, only 5% of the website fixed them and submitted it for reconsideration. Therefore, many local businesses lost their chance to recover their ranking on the search engine again. 

However, in the first step, you can avoid making the same mistake as all other people by checking and reviewing the Google penalties. Also, you can recover Google’s lost rankings. You should also know that without penalty, your site’s ranking can drop. But in this case, it’s really hard to determine why your site is falling behind. Sometimes it can happen due to Google’s algorithm update also. 

Many site owners don’t know why Google gives a penalty. So they can’t take action immediately. Anyway, some general reasons for which Google penalties your site are: 

  • Thin or irrelevant content 
  • User-generated spam 
  • Sneaky mobile redirects 
  • From or to your site, the unnatural link structure 

In case Google gives a penalty to you, Google Search Console will provide you with a notification. You will learn all the details or reasons for this penalty through the notice. According to the causes, then take your next step and fix the troubles. 

Local SEO Keyword Audit

The foundation of local SEO is knowing the search behavior of local customers. Local SEO keyword audit helps you to understand what products and services your local customers are searching for. However, one effective way to expand your scope is to perform local keyword research

For example, if you search for the keyword “Plumber” only, the search engine can bring the results of all the plumbers over the world. But focusing on the locality, you should search for “Plumber in London.” And your business’s local customers also search for products and services focusing on local intent. So, you also need to audit your local SEO keyword. 

To figure out the local keyword, you can follow the ways below: 

  • Brainstorm about your business products and services
  • On the “Keyword Explorer” of Ahrefs, paste your list 
  • Now pick the report of “Matching Terms.” 
  • Afterward, focusing on the search volume, look for the necessary and relevant keywords 

Check The Local SEO Rankings

So, the audit’s other crucial part is you will need to find the position where your target keywords rank. The main organic search results and local pack ranking is not the same. They function differently. So, from the specific locations, you must conduct searches for your target keywords. However, to automate this process, you can use the rank tracker. 

Website Audit

The website audit is about analyzing your site’s structure, layout, content, ranking, and overall experience. For auditing your website, consider the following:

  • Page Optimization: Web page optimization means the page is focused on relevant, unique, and well-structured keywords. In page optimization, you can face issues like lengthy or missing title tags or headlines. Or you may also find long, missing, or duplicate Meta data. 
  • Internal Link Audit: Investigate your site’s interlinking. Ensure the pages of your site are linked to your website’s other parts. Also, make sure that these links are not outdated or dead. 
  • Featured Snippets: The featured snippets appear on the search result’s top. It is a special box, and it includes the highlighted text excerpts. 
  • Mobile Audit: Check your site’s mobile responsiveness or how it looks on mobile or smaller devices by doing the mobile audit. 

Google My Business Audit

So another essential factor in boosting your site’s rankings is checking your “Google My Business” profile. However, in the beginning, the first question that comes to mind is whether Google Business Profile is available to your customers or not. If the answer is not, that’s a problem hindering your local SEO ranking. 

One of the quick winning situations for local search efforts is fixing this issue. Google My Business account is a great hidden opportunity to rank your business. However, in case you already have an account, you don’t need to go through all this panic. 

First, sign in to your Google Business profile. And to audit the profile, discover the following: 

  • Is all information available in your Google Business Profile, or is there anything missing? Check all the information like name, categories, description, address, opening hours, etc. If you find any information missing, complete it. Anyway, remember the character limit also. 
  • Did you correctly use the right keywords on your Google profile? One of the significant ranking factors in your GBP is keywords. So, you don’t have a chance to overlook it. Audit your GBP account and make sure you correctly place the keywords. 
  • Do you upload photos, videos, and other images on your GBP? If yes, it’s good. The more you upload different types of images, the better it will be. Ensure you have uploaded the logo, cover, interior, exterior, team, product, and service photos. 
  • Check your posting activity, like how often you post, what content you post, how you engage your customers, etc. 

Local Business Citation Analysis

Analyzing the local business citation is helpful for Google to confirm what information it knows about your site or business. Moreover, local citation audit help to increase the prominence. Your local search visibility can damage due to inaccurate or duplicate listings. 

Moreover, inaccurate listing creates inconvenience among local customers. All these destroy your brand’s confidence directly and hamper customer trust also. Incorrect information online creates frustrations among most customers. 

Customer Review Analysis

Online reviews are extremely helpful in establishing trust, making a brand, and attracting customers. From all these, your site will get higher traffic. Also, in the local pack visibility, one vital compounding factor is online review. 

For your local SEO audit’s first part, we recommend you collect your business’s top review site list. One by one particular, check every review site and then note the average star rating of your business. Look for the unresponded reviews. Also, don’t forget to note the “Good” VS “Bad” review’s proportion. 

When analyzing the reviews, focus on the negative thoughts you need to correct, like slow check-in, late shipping, or untidy stores. Whenever you proceed with your reviews, note all these factors. However, be concerned about the fake review also. Fake reviews significantly erode your customer’s trust. 

Social Engagement Audit

Improving your social media engagement is the key to boosting your site’s ranking on Google. However, if your business has social media pages, you must also focus on them. 

Now, how do you audit your social media engagement, or how can you know if they are contributing well? The easy way to know is to answer these questions and pass your judgment: 

  • How frequently do you post new updates? 
  • What is the update’s format? Images, text, polls, videos, or others? 
  • How often do users comment in the comment section or respond to your updates? 
  • What is the situation of user engagement, such as sharing, liking, commenting, Upvotes, etc.? 
  • How quickly do you respond to the user’s query?

A general rule of thumb is more engagement on social media means more got. So audit your social engagement and take necessary action to improve it. 

Competitor Analysis

So, one of the essential tasks that you can’t overlook is analyzing your competitor. First, determine the keyword you want to optimize and then type it on Google. Then it’s time to make your niche-related competitor’s list. You don’t need to make a long list but include at least 5 competitors in the list. 

Now analyze the competitor’s reviews, GBP, local listings, social media activity, reviews, ranking for the keywords, etc. To perform all these jobs, you can take SEO tools’ help, like Ahrefs. The available features of Ahrefs allow you to see the other optimized keywords of your competitor’s website. Thus by finding your competitor site’s different keywords, you can consider those keywords for your own. 

Local SEO Audit Tools

To boost your site’s rankings, manually follow the above-mentioned ultimate local SEO audit guide. But plenty of tools are also available to save time, effort, and energy. Some of the tools are: 

  • HubSpot 
  • Ahrefs 
  • Google My Business
  • Google Analytics 
  • GeoRanker 

Final Thought

The most crucial part of the local SEO audit is claiming, optimizing your Google business profile, and attracting more reviews. You will get more exposure from the “Map Pack” result of Google. Local SEO greatly helps to rank higher in Google’s local search results.

Every business at some point needs to conduct this SEO audit who are competing to display their site on the SERP’s localized results. Conducting an audit on local SEO may seem a daunting task. But fortunately, following the guide mentioned above, you can do it yourself. 

Perform your site’s local search engine optimization audit and let us know the result in the comment section. For any further queries, make a comment. Soon you will get a reply from us!

Shafiqul Islam

Shafiqul Islam is an experienced WordPress developer with over 200 website projects in his portfolio. He's worked with 30+ web development agencies and has a reputation for delivering high-quality work. Shafiqul is passionate about his craft and shares his knowledge through blog articles. You can connect with him on LinkedIn, Codeable, Facebook, Quora, and Twitter.

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