The Ultimate Guide to URL Audit with Sequence Stats

Tati Khumairoh

Tati Khumairoh

Published at

Cover image: Ilustration of auditing URLs on a website

Table Of Contents

    URLs are important to look at at least once a month. It is to make sure that there is no issue about it which can cause business loss. Thus, it is essential to know what URL audit is, the best practices, and how to do it. 

    In this compact article, we are trying to uncover all the things you need to know about URL audit plus how you can do it effortlessly with Sequence Stats. Want to know more? Read to the end.

    What Is URL Audit?

    A URL audit is a systematic examination and analysis of all the URLs on a website to evaluate their structure, relevance, and overall SEO performance. It involves inspecting individual URLs to ensure they are optimized for search engines and user experience.

    Conducting a URL audit is crucial for maintaining a healthy and high-performing website in the competitive online landscape. URLs play a significant role in how search engines understand and rank a website's content. That is why a well-optimized URL structure can positively impact a website's visibility in search results.

    Benefits of conducting a URL audit

    Conducting this kind of audit is not merely a must-do activity, but it brings a bunch of benefits. Below are some of the benefits you can expect.

    A. Improved Search Engine Rankings

    By optimizing URLs with relevant keywords, removing duplicates, and implementing best practices, a website's overall search engine rankings can significantly improve. Clear URLs will help both search engines and users to read the site.

    B. Faster Website Crawling

    A URL audit helps identify and resolve issues with broken or redirecting URLs, making it easier for search engine bots to crawl and index the website. Faster crawling means faster indexing and potential ranking improvements.

    C. Elimination of Duplicate Content Issues

    Duplicate content can harm a website's SEO efforts. By identifying and rectifying duplicate URLs, a URL audit helps ensure that search engines index the desired version of the content, avoiding confusion and potential penalties.

    C. Better Website Analytics

    Conduction URL audit will help webmasters and marketers better track and analyze website performance specifically about URLs through analytics tools. It allows for clearer segmentation and understanding of user behavior on different pages.

    D. Adaptation to Website Changes

    As websites evolve, content and URL structures may change. Regular URL audits ensure that new additions and modifications adhere to SEO best practices, maintaining consistent performance throughout website updates.

    E. Preparation for Website Migrations

    When planning a website migration or redesign, a URL audit becomes especially valuable. It ensures that proper redirects are in place to retain SEO value and prevent loss of traffic during the transition.

    SEO Issues Caused by Poorly Structured URLs

    Poorly structured URLs can lead to several SEO issues that can negatively impact a website's overall performance. Some of the potential SEO issues caused by such URLs include:

    • Poor User Experience: Lengthy, confusing, or cryptic URLs can create a poor user experience. Users may find it challenging to understand the content of the page from the URL alone, leading to a decrease in click-through rates and engagement.

    • Duplicate Content: Outdated URLs that still exist or variations of the same content with different URLs can lead to duplicate content issues. Search engines may struggle to determine the canonical version of the content, resulting in lower rankings for all affected URLs.

    • Broken Links: URLs that are outdated or no longer in use can result in broken links. Broken links not only frustrate users but also signal poor website maintenance to search engines, potentially impacting rankings.

    • Keyword Cannibalization: Poor URL structure may result in multiple pages targeting the same or similar keywords. This can lead to keyword cannibalization, where pages compete with each other for the same search terms, diluting their SEO value.

    • URL Parameters Issues: Dynamic URLs with excessive parameters can create problems for search engines in understanding the page's content and relevance. This may result in lower rankings or incomplete indexing of important pages.

    Picture 1: Illustration of SEO Issues Caused by URL

    Picture 1: Illustration of SEO Issues Caused by URL

    Conducting the URL Audit

    Now we come to the main point which is conducting a URL audit. In the process, you will need a checklist of what should be checked. Here's the list you might want to know.

    1. Identify and Categorize Different Types of URLs

    When conducting a URL audit, the first step is to identify and categorize the various types of URLs present on the website. This categorization helps to gain a clear understanding of the website's structure and content organization. Common types of URLs include product pages, blog posts, category pages, landing pages, and more.

    2. Analyze URL Parameters and Their Impact on Indexing and Crawling

    In this part of the URL audit, webmasters examine dynamic URLs that contain query parameters or session IDs. These dynamic URLs can create challenges for search engine bots to index the content correctly. Thus, webmasters need to assess the impact of URL parameters on indexing and determine the best approach to handle them.

    3. Evaluate URL Length, Readability, and Keyword Optimization

    URLs that are too long, cryptic, or lacking readability can negatively affect both search engine rankings and user experience. In this section of the URL audit, webmasters evaluate the length and readability of URLs to ensure they are concise and user-friendly. Additionally, the inclusion of relevant keywords in URLs can positively impact SEO efforts.

    4. Identify and Handle Duplicate Content Issues

    During the URL audit, webmasters identify duplicate URLs, whether caused by URL variations or multiple versions of the same content. Implementing proper canonicalization through canonical tags is crucial to indicate the preferred version of the content and consolidate link equity.

    5. Check for Broken or Redirecting URLs

    Broken links and improper URL redirects can harm a website's SEO and user experience. So, webmasters can conduct a thorough scan for broken URLs that return 404 errors or redirecting URLs that use temporary (302) redirects instead of permanent (301) redirects. 

    URL Audit Tool

    In doing the audit, you don't have to subscribe to different tools to get the data. Sequence Stats Site Audit is enough to give you complete data about the Site Audit, including URLs in the site. By using the Sequence Stats Site Audit feature, here are what you can expect:

    • Customizable page number for audit.

    • Complete audit data.

    • All-in-one tool SEO Stats.

    • Scheduled site audit.

    Picture 2: Site audit by Sequence Stats.

    Picture 2: Site audit by Sequence Stats.

    Now, auditing your whole site with all that elements will no longer be a problem. No more outdated URLs and site health issues, you can schedule it and let the system return with the full report. To do that, register to Sequence Stats and enjoy all the benefits.