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SiteGuru

The Smart SEO Audit Tool

As an individual who hosts hundreds of domains and someone who used to do SEO for huge Real Estate corporations, I've always been on the lookout for a great SEO review tool. One that works well and doesn't give me bogus and outdated recommendation such as "you are missing the keywords tag"... seriously. At some point I decided to build my own, but... the upkeep. It's riddiculous... enter SiteGuru.

Functionality

It's pretty simple. You can sign up for 15 day for free to test it out. No credit card required! (don't get me started on those who say "free trial" but ask you for credit card before they give you any access).

Add your first domain name and wait for the magic to take place.

The cheapest plan they offer covers 2 domain names? Only have one domain name? Comment below to see if anyone wants to connect with you and perhaps you can split the costs, because you get unlimited users with each account.

Depending on how many pages you have on your website, it might take a few minutes to scan. I submitted honestsumo.com with just a few pages and it scanned almost immediately.

Samples

Here's where we get down and dirty with the tool.

I submitted honestsumo.com and almost immediately got a reply that my website score is 31%. You'd think that I know what I'm doing right? Mainly this template came from Theme Forest and I've tweaked it around a bit, but I do believe that 31% is a legit score. Let's see what's on the page, but before we do, I must say that I LOVE this design. It's very clean and informative.

Tabs here include

  1. Overview
  2. Content
  3. Technical
  4. Links
  5. Insight

Straight away I noticed an issue. I tried to add my Google Analytics, but the software doesn't work new version of GA, so tab #5 is no good. We will come back to this one later with another domain, for now let's do the others.

OVERVIEW TAB:

For me, this section showed 11 tasks that required my attention. All but one fell into the other Tabs. The one that was isolated without another section was "Trailing slashes may cause duplicate content", why it's unique, doesn't matter, let's start with that one then. I click on the link and right away it tells me how to fix it... I LOVE THAT! To have no slashes I can add this to my .htaccess file:

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule ^(.*)/$ /$1 [R=301,L]

Simple enough, but I don't really want to have too many redirects. Let me see if I can do it my own way and fix this in PHP:

//GET CURRENT URL
function currentURL(){

    $url = 'https://'.$_SERVER['SERVER_NAME'].$_SERVER['REQUEST_URI'];
    $url = trim( $url, '/' );

    return $url;
}

And then, I added a canonical tag to my HTML... that should do the trick too:

<link rel="canonical" href="<?=currentURL();?>" />

And while I'm at it, I figured I'd do the benchmarking on 15 pages. How long does it take? Well, 15 pages took about 3 minutes and 45 seconds, but then I got hit with a delay wall before the audit kicked in: "Starts in 10 minutes". My recommendation here would be to add a bit of more information here instead of showing a spinning circle. If I'm 100% sure I will be delayed AT LEAST 10 minutes, then just tell me the whole thing will take at least 10 minutes before I click the rescan button. Well, going forward I'll try to do as many updates as I can before hitting that rescan button. Perhaps it's because another website was scanning at the same time? In any case, this was an unexpected delay considering small website size.

While I was waiting I browsed around a bit and looked at the settings that allow you to specify when the rescan should happen automatically. I set this up to 7AM on Tuesdays. I did notice that the time zone is hardcoded to UTC. As a US user I am used to 3 time zones I know, this ain't one of them. To me it speaks loudly "we're not from USA" which also might mean delay in support. I know I'm being picky, but this tool is so close to perfect, and this is an easy fix.

30 MINUTES LATER:

The rescan completed. The issue above has not been fixed, so perhaps I should use the recommended .htaccess change. However it appears to have fixed another issue, because I now have 10 to-do items and the score went up to 39%. Alright, let's take a look at the other tabs.

CONTENT TAB:

Well, since it's a brand new site, I didn't do much work on here, so I'm seeing "Duplicate Page Titles". You wouldn't believe how many times I've added pages on other sites with similar or the same title without even realizing it. This is a life saver. I've fixed those up and added descriptions for "Missing met descriptions" issue. It's so great that each item shows exactly what needs to be added and how. I know how OG tags work, but it's just so much simpler to copy it and paste them into my HTML.

TECHNICAL TAB:

So there's the weirdness of a green spinner here between "Average page speed" and "Top page speed recommendations". Am I missing something? Anyway, this page links directly to the pagespeed report for all pages starting from the lowest score. Clicking on the link takes you to PageSpeed Insights that we're familiar with. Unlike this site, you can make a change on your page and quickly recheck your score, so I will leave that for the last. 

Let's move on to "Indexing" - everything looks good. I don't have anything odd in my robots.txt so I didn't expect any issues here.

"Sitemaps" - "We could not find any sitemaps... well, that's true. I've gone ahead and generated one and added it to my robots.txt, but I still clicked on the "About sitemaps" link. Looks great, but an in depth example would be better. Still, I've built so many sitemaps I can do those in my sleep. Let's go!

"Canonicals" - aaaaah... I guess that's the one that I completed when I added the first fix above. Very cool, this one is done, I move on.

"Structured data" - I have none found here. I'm not selling anything, nor do I have any events, but perhaps I can add a review section for this page so that it shows up on Google? Why not. Let's do it. I read a SiteGuru article written by Rick van Haasteren and gave it a shot and I was easily able to verify it on search.google.com. Done and moving on.

"Hreflangs" - I'm going to skip that, since English is all I'm going to work with, but I will come back and read more articles about it, perhaps there's something more to be learned.

"Analytics" page simply shows whether the GA is loaded on the page. Since I load my GA in the index file, it should be everywhere, so we're good here.

Last, but not least "HTML" showed about a dozen of W3C validation errors. Can I check my site on my own with all the validators and so on? Yes, I can, but to have a tool that constantly scans it for me and reports any issues is such a time saver. And just like Google PageSpeed, you can recheck your pages instantly, so you can see if issues were corrected.

LINKS TAB:

This is an important one. Not only did I have leftover links from the design template that I missed completely, links sometimes die... especially external links. If I write this review and at some point siteguru.co becomes siteguru.com and I don't update my links, google will penalize me and not SiteGuru ninjas. I mean, I'm sure that's not the case for this website, but other websites may go out of business and break my SEO. This tool will help.

I will review the "INSIGHTS" section as an update to this review once I can link up my accounts properly. For now let me just say that SiteGuru is beautifully designed with a plethora of tools and after my second rescan, I've reached a glorious 89% and still 2 items on my to-do  list, which is quite an improvement from original 31% after a single day of flipping through SiteGuru and following guidelines, but obviously there's still work for me to do. Next steps are speed optimizations and content editing.

Thanks for the guideline SiteGuru.

Issues
  1. Google Analytics v4 does not work
  2. I tried deleting a site - it takes a while and I wasn't sure if it was working or not, perhaps adding one of those spinning indicators might do the trick here
  3. Spinner after "Average page speed" spins, spins and disappears. Seems like it's a new site issue.
Recommendations
  1. Remove the delay wall for rescans OR show warning letting people know that there will be at least a 10 minute delay.
  2. Detect proper time zone from the user's IP address and offer user's time zone in scheduling instead of hardcoded UTC.
  3. Could we perhaps get the score in the subject line of the email? I think that would make these stand out better in the inbox.
  4. API would be amazing. Perhaps it could be done on the higher tears, but being able to pull the information through a piece of code would probably enable SEOs to trigger certain actions when criteria is met... imagine a scenario of IF {broken_links_detected} THEN ALEXA {sound_the_alarm}... ya know?
  5. If API is too much to ask for, Webhoooks would really do wonder. Right now I have a mailtrap account set up that depends on the emails contents not changing... that's the hacky way. Having a webhook fire to my server to let me know the results would be tremendous.
Honest Grade

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