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Onsite SEO Cheat Sheet by colinbancmedia

For web designers, developers and SEOs that want to check if a website is search engine friendly.

Meta Tag / Head Area Checklist

Title
Required
Meta Descri­ption
Required
Rel Canonical Tag
Recomm­ended
Meta Content Type
Required
Meta Keywords
Optional - Not used by Google
Meta Robots
Optional
Meta Googlebot
Optional
Meta Google
Optional
Meta Google Site Verifi­cation
Optional
Rel Next/Prev
Optional
Rel DNS Prefetch
Optional
Rel Shortlink
Optional
Facebook Open Graph Tags
Recomm­ended
Twitter Card Tags
Optional
Rel Alternate (RSS Feed)
Optional
Rel Shortcut Icon/Icon (Favicon)
Recomm­ended
Meta Refresh
Not recomm­ended

Body

Heading tags (H1, H2, H3, H4...)
Recomm­ended
Paragraph tags
Optional
Page Anchors
Optional
Links
Required
Navigation
Required
Unique Content
Required
Address Info
Recomm­ended
Rich snippets (micro­data, microf­ormats, RDFa)
Recomm­ended
Strong
Optional
Em
Optional
Breadc­rumbs
Recomm­ended
Cookie Policy Page
Recomm­ended
Contact Page
Recomm­ended
Privacy Page
Recomm­ended
Google + Authorship
Recomm­ended
Social Media Buttons
Recomm­ended

Content

Check for duplic­ate­/sc­raped content
Do not mix languages on a page
Check for spelling and grammar
Avoid hidden content
Do not over-use keywor­ds/­phrases
Do not over-use bold tags
Nofollow all untrus­ted/UGC links

Image Optimi­sation

Alt
Required
Search engine friendly file name
Recomm­ended
Title
Recomm­ended
Compress Images (Smush.it etc)
Recomm­ended
Convert Images to WebP
Optional (Google Chrome & Opera only)
Store on cookieless sub-do­mains
Recomm­ended
Store on cloud hosting / CDN
Recomm­ended

URL

Search engine friendly URL
Recomm­ended
No Session ID in URL
Required
Homepage URL is root ( '/' )
Required
URLs match Canonical Tags
Required
URLs match FB OG Site Tag
Required
All lowercase letters
Recomm­ended
Consistent closing slash
Required
No spaces
Required
No non-pe­rmitted characters
Required
No duplicate URLs for same page
Required
 

Sitemaps

XML Sitemap
Recomm­ended
Static Sitemap
Recomm­ended
Compressed Sitemap
Recomm­ended
Video Sitemap
Optional
Google News Sitemap
Optional
RSS Feed
Recomm­ended
Sitemap Index File
Optional
Sitemap reference in Robots.txt
Recomm­ended

Robots.txt

Robots.txt
Recomm­ended
Robots.txt sitemap link
Optional
Robots.txt disallow rules
Optional - be careful
Robots.txt allow rules
Optional
Check in Webmaster Tools
Recomm­ended

Broken Links / Redirects

Check for broken links/­error pages (4xx,5xx)
Required
Check for redirects (3xx)
Required
All website pages sending 200 success code
Required
Homepage should not redirect
Required
Homepage should send 200 success code
Required

Links

Title
Recomm­ended
Rel Nofollow
Optional - Use with care
Rel Alternate Hreflang x
For Multi Language Sites
Rel Next/P­revious
Optional
Rel Tag
Optional
Rel Author / Me
Optional
Rel Bookmark
Optional

404 Error Page

Check 404 page exists
Required
Check 404 page returns 404 status code
Required
Custom 404 error page
Optional
Add useful links, sitemap or search box to 404 page
Optional

HTML Validation

W3C Markup Validation Service

3rd Party Software: Flash/­Sil­ver­lig­ht/­Jav­a/PDF etc

3rd Party Software Navigation Menu
Avoid
3rd Party Software Intro page
Avoid
3rd Party Software Text Content
Avoid
Entire Site Using Third Party Software
Avoid
Small Features
Allowed
Videos
Allowed
Audio elements
Allowed
Animations
Allowed
Tools
Allowed

Over Optimi­sation

Is the site user friendly?
Could a user class the page as spammy?
Do not over-use keywor­ds/­phrases in text, headings or meta data
Do not create more internal links than necesssary
Too many keyword rich links
Poor conten­t/too many repeated phrases
Too many ads (eg Adsense) above the fold
Too many ads, such that content is hard to access
 

Google Webmaster Tools

Fetch as Googlebot
Required
Submit .xml Sitemap
Required
Submit Compressed Sitemap
Recomm­ended
Submit RSS Feed
Recomm­ended
Set Geographic target
Recomm­ended
Set Preferred domain
Recomm­ended
HTML Improv­ements
Optional
Rich Snippets Testing Tool
Optional

Bing Webmaster Tools

Fetch as Bingbot
Recomm­ended
Submit Sitemap
Recomm­ended
Submit RSS Feed
Optional
Submit URLs
Optional

Website Speed Tools (Online)

Google PageSpeed Insights
Neustar Instant Speed Test
GTmetrix
Pingdom Tools Full Page Test
Yahoo! YSlow
Webpag­ete­st.org
Whichl­oad­sfa­ste­r.com
Site-P­erf.com
loadIm­pac­t.com

Auditing Tools

Screaming Frog
Xenu

Google Webmaster Guidelines

Read, understand and follow the Google Webmaster Guidelines
Do not place a link exchange section on your website
Avoid automa­tically generated / scraped content
Avoid cloaking
Avoid 'sneaky redirects'
Avoid hidden text or links
Avoid doorway pages
Do not abuse rich snippets

Facebook

Facebook Debugger Tool
Google Structured Data Testing Tool

Keyword Research

Google Adwords Keyword Tool
Google Suggest
UberSu­ggest
Bing Keyword Tool

WordPress

All in One SEO
WordPress SEO by Yoast
W3 Total Cache

Credits

Cheat Sheet created by Colin McDermott from Banc Media.
Colin McDermott: http:/­/cm.or­g.uk/
Big Thanks to Dave @ Added Bytes.
 

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Comments

Carmen Cardoza Carmen Cardoza, 16:29 5 Apr 13

Thank you. This is a great check list!

colinbancmedia colinbancmedia, 00:00 10 Jun 13

Thanks Cardoza! You are welcome. Let me know how you use it.

Gaurav Sadawarte Gaurav Sadawarte, 15:46 19 Jun 14

found it extremely helpful, but I have a question that why do you perferr CDN network, i guess you i doesn't allow cache copies of pages which can be helpful when it comes to mobile optimization...

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