When a website is older than a year or two, often webpages tend to get more engagement than others. When keyword rankings or web traffic start to fade, it’s often beneficial to do a website audit and gather a listing of what webpages are working and which ones are not. When you have a list of poor performing webpages, the next step is to find better performing webpages of equal relevance to setup 301 redirects to. When this is done, users are sent to webpages that previous users have already declared work, by engagement. When more users click through into the website via the good webpage, they don’t bounce as much as they did with the poor webpages and keywords tend to rebound in rankings.

Optimizing user engagement sends positive signals to searchbots as well, so if a website can keep users on their website with these higher quality webpages then keywords for these webpages will increase in ranking. Not only can keywords improve in ranking, but more users will be exposed to the website’s CTAs and have a higher chance of goal conversions. Those old webpages of poor quality are often holding a website back in many ways. Not addressing this issue, is basically just saying that the website is find just where it is, and no website owner feels that way, improvement is always in mind.

How To Determine A Webpage Is Poor Quality?

This is where a skilled SEO will shine, doing a scan of a website. An SEO can compare webpages with analytics and simply look at a combination of user metrics to find what users aren’t engaging with. Things like average time on page and amount of pages views per session are valuable at understanding what users are enjoying. Google search console and Bing webmaster tools can also tell a story about what webpages are being seen the most. Using historical views and comparing data over long periods of time, one can easily see what works and what doesn’t.

Heatmaps and user session recording can be another indication as to users finding a webpage useful or not. Not always will analytics tell the story for newer websites, and even older websites, if marketing just wasn’t done, users may not even know the webpage exists, therefor the higher a user count the more the metrics will mean something. If only 10 users are visiting the webpage, you only have the opinions of 10 people, which isn’t much when you’ll have hundreds or thousands of visitors over the course of a year. Knowing what the users find engaging, will help deliver content that is engaging.

To Prune And Merge A Website Shows Content Freshness

When an SEO uses the prune and merge technique on a website, all webpages are listed and gone through. Every webpage is checked against other webpages on the site for duplicate content. Any webpages that are duplicates are then either merged or redirected with relevant webpages, this is what is called ” prune and merge “.

Users find websites that keep up with webpage maintenance more trust worthy and also view the website more as an authority in the content being talked about. Simply due to professional appearance establishes trust and users feel more comfortable reading the information on the website, They view that attention to detail as a sign of things to come and are more willing to follow the message the website has to offer.

As searchbots crawl the website and see more activity, instead of bounces and higher exit rates. They see the website has more user activity and that the keywords the webpage ranks for are helping the user. Since the overall goal of a search engine is to assist user’s web searches, any sign that’s being done is a signal to improve rankings. Of course more is factored into this, but user engagement and website freshness are part of the 200+ ranking factors. Having a professional SEO do a detail webpage audit of a website is something that is needed at least every 6 months.

If you haven’t had a webpage audit done, you could be loosing keyword rankings due to stagnant user engagement. Contact SEOByMichael for an SEO audit and fix the problems today!