SEO Checklist: Never Forget Anything About SEO Ever Again

by Dennis Seymour May 08, 2015
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Why You Need An SEO Checklist

Complete SEO Checklist

Yup, never.

Some 8 years back, when I was just starting to get serious with this SEO thing, I scoured the Web for an SEO checklist that would help me remember all these new things that I was learning.

I found nothing.

Besides a list of linking strategies that included profile links, forum signatures and spamming bookmark sites, I never really did find a good one.

It would’ve made it exponentially easier for me to learn SEO if I could have printed out something and marked it off manually back then. I could review it, internalize it and plan out tasks better.

Time traveling to the present day: I snapped out of my unproductive daydream, I put my glass of wine down and I told myself to stop reminiscing about the past.

Then it dawned on me. Why not make one?

That small epiphany became this blog post and infographic. You can also download a bonus printable version at the end of the post, which includes local SEO checklists that aren’t in the infographic.

Click here to download a free SEO checklist that you can print out and use today, whether you are still learning the ropes or already running an SEO campaign. PLUS, bonus local SEO checklists that are not found in the infographic.
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SEO Checklist

Share The Ultimate SEO Checklist Infographic On Your Site

I wanted this SEO checklist infographic to be the longest infographic you’ve ever seen… literally.

I know the stats about how it’s not ideal. How it’s not the best thing to do and how stupid an idea that is to make such a long infographic.

Sometimes, you just need to do something different.

Besides wanting this to be remembered as the longest infographic about SEO ever, I wanted it to be REALLY useful.

There are a lot of people out there that can benefit from this, much like I would have if I am starting all over again today.

So, with that said, let’s get started with some quick explanations of why I think each one is important.

Research

Research is arguably the most boring part of SEO for many, but I personally love it. You have to embrace the research part to get a feel of what you are up against and what you will be doing.

Your whole SEO strategy will depend on your depth of understanding so DO NOT ever skip the research phase.

🔥 Market Research
Market research gives you a feel of the whole landscape.

Chances are, you will be working on a more specific website. By doing market research, you open your mind to what’s out there, what they are doing, what’s working for them and so on.

Look around, vertically and horizontally. The information you learn here will come in handy when you start creating your SEO plan and link building strategy.

😎 Niche Research
It’s time to niche it down. Who are you going up against directly? What’s the overall state of the niche when it comes to SEO? What types of results is Google showing you when you search? Local? Maps? Mostly Yelp? Video dominates? Are news sites being shown?

Knowing these will help you prioritize what you need to do to get visibility as soon as possible.

👐🏼 Competitor Research
Who are your direct competitors? What are they doing? How aggro are they?

Compile your direct competitors. Search using the keywords you are targeting on Google and list down all your competitors.

Compile their link profiles, identify which site is getting the most links, note down the link types they have and what their audiences are sharing.

🤖 Keyword Research
Now that you have done your competitor research, you can use the data for this phase.

You’ll be able to see the keywords they are ranking for based on the anchor text from their links and you can use tools like SEMRush to find out what other keywords they are ranking for or bidding for.

Compile those keywords and add your target keywords into a list.

Whip out Google’s Keyword Planner, paste the keywords in and watch the magic happen.

You’ll get a ton of suggestions you would have never thought of in the first place.

👾 Data Gathering
Now, it’s time to start compiling the data you’ve researched and gather some actual stats about your website.

Compile the initial keywords and backlinks you’ve acquired from the research you’ve done above. Put them into organized lists.

You also need to answer things like: What’s the current status of your website vs your competitors? How optimized are their websites? How many links do they have now?

You need to activate Google Analytics so you can get data about the site you are working on.

You need to crawl the site you are working so you can have the data by the time you get to the on-page SEO phase.

💪🏼 Google Search Console

We love today’s version of Google Webmaster Tools. You can get a ton of data simply by using this.

You can:

  • Check for crawl errors
  • Check for penalties
  • Check if the sitemap has been submitted already
  • Check HTML improvements needed
  • Check for broken links

Grab all the data you can and fix them now or until you get to the on-page SEO phase.

Bonus: You might also want to submit your site to Bing’s Webmaster Center. Just for the sake of it. Just do it.

On-Page SEO

 

This often gets the most criticism from die-hard link builders but nowadays, a lot of them have come to accept on-page SEO as a major part of the overall SEO process.

Today, a lot of pages can rank purely from relevance and good on-page SEO work so never neglect it.

🙂 General

For those that are new to SEO, you might not be aware of some of these.

These are best practices that you must apply early on and throughout the life of your website.

The following items are very basic so if you have questions about any of these, please feel free to ask in the comments area.

Start with these:

  • Add an XML Sitemap
  • Add Navigation
    • Add Menus
    • Use Breadcrumbs
  • Add a Robots.txt file
  • Check for Canonical
  • For Pagination: Add Rel=”next” and Rel=”prev” – If you are on WordPress, the Joost’s Yoast WordPress SEO plugin is my #1 choice. It even handles this part. It’s amazing. Joost, if you see this, you and your company are amazing! If you encounter problems with rel next and rel prev, you might want to look at this.
  • No-index thin pages – Tags should definitely be no-indexed. Category pages that don’t have unique content should be as well.
  • Fix all the problems found in Webmaster Tools
  • Title – ensure keyword presence / check for H1 tag / use long-tail keywords
  • Check Meta Tags
    • Fix all pages missing Meta Titles (Stick to 60 characters)
    • Fix all pages missing Meta Descriptions (Stick to 150 characters or less)
    • Fix all images missing Alt Text
    • Check h# tags (e.g. <h1>, <h2>, etc.)  and order them properly.

🤠 Optimize Content

Now it’s time to check your site’s existing content.

For many of you, you will be thrown into a project for big website that’s pretty messed up, with content that has been built over the years.

Do not be afraid to change the content if it will improve it and do not hesitate to cull those worthless pages.

⌚️ Performance Tweaks

The performance of your website is IMPORTANT, especially in today’s SEO landscape.

Though the Mobilegeddon update has been underwhelming so far, it will become more important as time goes by so fix your website today.

  • Check mobile-friendliness (Responsive Design or Mobile Website)
  • Check multi-browser-friendliness
  • Check / improve speed
    • Use CDN
    • Use good hosting – if you are seeing great progress with your traffic, then start moving away from your shared hosting account.
    • Compress images
    • Use different ways to cache
    • Check with Google PageSpeed Insights for Further Fixes
    • My fav WordPress Plugin = WP Rocket.

💻 URL Optimization

Your URL structure can be easily neglected but it can have a good impact on your rankings and even user re-call.

The best practice is to keep it as short as possible, aim for below 100 characters.

  • Incorporate primary keywords into the URL
  • Use absolute URLs
  • Simplify dynamic URLs with mod_rewrite (Say no to dynamic URLs when possible)
  • Use 301 redirects for rewritten URLs
  • Set up non-www to www redirect (or vice versa)

🖥 Using Schema

Less than 30% of the websites out there actually use it. Take advantage of that. Schema is here to stay. It doesn’t mean that it’s useless because Google Authorship is dead.

Though its direct impact to SEO is still not actually “proven” in a concrete way, it’s indirect effects are actually very obvious.

Whatever you believe, like I always say, optimize everything and you will succeed in SEO.

I highly recommend that you check out SEOGadget’s (ok, BuiltVisible, I miss the name…) guide on schema over here.

Off-Page SEO

Clearly the most popular part of SEO is your off-page work, more commonly referred to as link building. It is where you want to spend the bulk of your time besides planning and creating your content.

Some of the strategies below are old-school, some are new and some are really niche specific. If you have question, feel free to ask them in the comments area or you can start a new conversation over here.

👮🏼 Set Up Brand Alerts
Setting up Google Alerts, TalkWalker and Mention are practically staples in any SEO campaign today. Moz also has neat built-in tracking tool, so if you are a subscriber, be sure to make use of that.

The reason you’d want to do this is that you want to know immediately when someone mentions your brand (and any other relevant keywords) anywhere in the Internet.

This allows you to track your reviews, negative press, blog mentions, forum questions and more! You’ll have the chance to get a backlinks by jumping in early and you also get to build better brand loyalty by showing that you care enough to respond to their posts or issues.

🔗 Find Unlinked URL’s and Brand Mentions
If you are working on an established site, then chances are, there will be a ton of unlinked mentions out there for you to take.

Tip: There are a lot of ways but start with the simplest method by using Google

Brand -Brand.com (LeapFroggr -leapfroggr.com)

🏬 Competing Company Links
Find your competitors, look around vertically and horizontally in your niche and category.

Compile them and check their links. Then go out and get those links. They got it, why can’t you?

📎 Ranking Competitor Links
Search for your target keywords and find those direct-ranking competitors. Chances are, you won’t see a lot of them during your competitor research phase.

Now compile these sites and check their backlinks.

Find Important Links Using Link Intersects
Basically, you want to find the links that already link to your competitors.

Why? There’s a higher chance that you can get those links quickly.

You can use Excel after you export your competitor backlinks to see which domains link to them but for those rare SEO’s that don’t really like spreadsheets (like me) – then CognitiveSEO has a tool for it, so does Link Research Tools and as well as Moz.

👍🏼 Create Social Media Profiles
Create your social properties and make sure to put a link back to your website.

If you can’t use them yet, then treat it mainly for branding purposes and to reserve the name when the time comes that you might actually need them.

💔 Broken Link Building
Broken link building is basically a strategy to start a conversation with a webmaster.

You give them something and they might eventually do you a favour. That’s the basic idea.

Knowing that, you can get creative with it and who better to explain it than Jon Cooper?

Richard Marriott over at Clambr also put up an awesome tutorial. 

📌 Utilizing Relevant Pinterest Boards
Join or ask to get invited on Pinterest Group Boards. PinGroupie is a good place to start.

True, Pinterest links are no-follow for the most part but Pinterest can bring you tons of traffic and visibility.

You will get links that you would never get by doing normal link prospecting. You can even take it a step further and check the people that shared your pin and reach out to them. You can message with people directly in Pinterest now, just in case you haven’t been using it lately.

🙋🏼‍♂️ Join Expert Roundups
Expert roundups are a dime a dozen nowadays and they are getting bigger and bigger each day just to stand out and squeeze out the most social shares.

You don’t have to join all of them but you should join some of them.

For the most part, these are on blogs with their own readership, so it’s a chance for you to get your brand out there and eventually pull in more links.

Oh, you can also be the one to do expert roundups and offer that as part of your outreach. Lots of people will link to it if you use a proper angle for the roundup.

👩‍❤️‍💋‍👨 Guest Posting on Influencer Websites
Guest posting is not dead. They should rephrase that.

It’s more like guest posting on blatantly fake blog networks is almost dead.

People keep complaining about it but it really isn’t dead. In fact, it’s more important and more precious now than ever.

Find the right sites, build the right connections and create great content for their audience without over-using anchor text.

🗣 Blog Commenting To Build Relationships

Blog comment links are mostly no-follow. The real value is in the relationships that are formed.

I’ve met a ton of people simply by doing guest commenting and I got connected with new people that eventually linked to me because I took a bit of my spare time to build these relationships.

I met Matt Capala through blog commenting and he has sent business my way and exclusive connections. (Blatant Plug: Buy his book.)

Some relationships are started through email, some are started by joining local networking events and some can be started simply by blog commenting.

If you want to learn by example, my friends Adrienne, Donna, Harleena, Sue, Don, Carol and Ryan are great people to learn from. 

📘 Utilize Quote Directories
Sounds funny, but there are many quote directories out there that can be used for links.

Since we are talking about directories, go ahead and look for blog directories, startup directories and niche specific directories. The links can be acquired easily and for the most part, free.

🏆 Get on Sites that Offer Awards
If you are running a pet website, then you can find sites that offer awards both locally and internationally. Run a service business? There are plenty of business awards you can join. If you run a blog, go out and find sites that offer blog awards. Run a podcast? There are awards for that, too.

In many cases, being nominated can get you a link already… but do try to win so you can show off the award and get other perks.

📰 Contribute to Newsletters
Consider this as a way for you to get your brand out there. It’s also a way to get targeted traffic and acquire loyal readers.

So where does the SEO part come in? You can find sites that would allow you to publish content exclusively for their subscribers. It’s like guest posting but only through an exclusive list of people.

You can also get on newsletter publishers that publish recommended content each month. Many of their subscribers use the newsletter content when publishing their monthly or weekly link roundups on their own blogs. That’s where your link is going to come from!

As a side benefit, believe it or not, some people will copy the newsletter content directly and paste it on their site.

🍻 Get on Institution Websites
Confused? These are also known as .gov and .edu links.

I could talk about hacking their sites, I could talk about manipulating their Moodle platforms and others but…this is sort of a white-hat blog.

The traditional way is to get on their resource page. You can also offer work to them in exchange for a link. One of my older tricks is to track down the student editor and give him beer money.

The .Gov sites will sometimes have forums that give do-follow links. Sometimes you can be a supplier to a project or event depending on your niche. It can open lots of doors for you if you do it the right way.

📊 Get Links from Local Chamber of Commerce Websites
Local CoC websites are plenty but the rules are different for each one.

In most cases, it’s pretty easy to get links from them. Just ask what you want do for them or what their requirements are.

📝 Don’t Overlook New Bloggers
New bloggers are going to look for mentors. They look for people that are already where they want to be. They will ask questions and they will need guidance.

If you have people following you or somebody emails you, do not hesitate to help them out. Relationships built out this way can net you links you will never really get by simply doing prospecting.

Also, when building out your prospecting list, you will encounter new blogs. Do not hesitate to reach out to them. It doesn’t mean that they don’t have readers and it doesn’t mean that the link you’ll get is worthless since they are a PR-0 site.

Often, these bloggers have really die-hard followers that jump on any recommendation they make and these followers are usually bloggers too. Imagine the extra links you’ll get.

Oh, and in time, the link you get will become more important as they become more important in the space.

🎧 Do Guest Podcasting
Podcasting is BIG right now and 99% of the time, these podcasters have their own blogs so they can put the show notes there. You don’t have to even start your own podcast.

The idea here is to get on those podcasts. That’s a 100% sure, high quality link.

🔑 Submit to Curating Platforms
Curating platforms like Scoop.it can share your content out and link back to you. In many cases, these are no-follow links but they have users of their own. Plus these users that curate have blogs. The things they curate get sent to their blogs and their readers get to find your content because of their referral.

My personal favourite is Flipboard. It has brought me a ton of traffic already and readers actually do stick around.

👩‍👩‍👧‍👦 Use LinkedIN Pulse
I only just started with LinkedIN Pulse but it’s pretty good so far.

The reason isn’t really for the link, but for the brand visibility. You can assume that the people that follow you and see your work on LinkedIN already have their own social presence online. They might also have blogs.

With my few articles so far, I have gotten some new links because they found my site from my LinkedIN posts.

Plus, you can republish your content on LinkedIN Pulse so it’s not really duplicate content. I don’t do this but a lot of other people do. Maybe you should try it out.

For tips, Paul Shapiro made the best article about it (ever) over here at Noah Kagan’s blog.

✒️ Get on Publisher Websites
I consider the top tier publishing sites here, such as Entrepreneur, HuffPo, BusinessInsider and more. Depending on your niche, you will find other really big publishers so make sure to get on them.

I also consider the viral sites, like Buzzfeed, under this category. The normal way to get on these sites is to write on their backend and try hard to get your work on the main site. If not, then it won’t really be indexed.

If you want to be creative, my favorite tactic to get on these viral sites is to start from the smaller blogs and work my way up. I spread news or rumors on smaller blogs that I know these viral sites take news from. Once it’s picked up, you push it again on the next level and things will again, snowball from there.

💒 Find Community Websites
Community sites like Triberr and Kingged can give you some good initial traction. You’ll be able to meet new people, share your work, gain visibility and eventually, links.

👽 Don’t Forget StumbleUpon and Reddit
If you look at the StumbleUpon idea, it can look so Web1.0 but it can still bring in good traffic. Their Ad platform is also good if you plan it out right and know how to get it to catch on. Once it does, it will snowball. You’ll get links, one way or another. One of the people I’ve been following since forever is Ross Hudgens. They put out this cool guide about SU that you can check out here.

As for Reddit, it is only getting hotter so people can say whatever they want about how worthless it is for SEO but for me, Reddit has brought my sites tons of traffic and netted me links from hardcore, badass sites. Ain’t too shabby. Plus, it can do this…thanks for the spot Dan.

📸 Find Uncredited Images
It’s inevitable.

People will steal your images. Steal? Sounds harsh. Well, sometimes bloggers just grab it off Google images. It’s a completely innocent thing to do so I understand.

Good thing we know SEO! That practically means a free link in my eyes.

Use Google’s image search and upload a photo. It’ll show you places where the image was used. You can also use Tineye to do this.

Oh, infographic promotion can fall under this as well.

🖼 Submit to Slideshare
If you do speaking gigs, present to your company or other groups, then you probably have a collection of slide decks. Simply use sites like Slideshare and share your content there!

Do you create blog posts? Repurpose your blog content into slides!

Need more Slideshare tips and tricks? Then get it from no other but the queen herself, Ana Hoffman from TGC.

Note: You can also submit PDF’s to Slideshare but there are also places to submit PDF’s so you can share your book or whitepaper to the world.

📒 Get on Magazine and News Sites
Local ones will tend to be easier to get featured on to but bigger, global news sites are still possible. It will just take a bit more work and patience.

What I do is to find the editor or a connection to the editor. Once I get introduced, it’s easy to submit a piece and get a piece published.

Joining HARO, which will be mentioned shortly, can also help you get on some of these sites.

📚 Find Resource Pages
Resource pages is one of the oldest plays in the book and it’s still one of my favorites.

Why? Competitors neglect them and I don’t have to worry about content. Easy, relevant links. Boom.

📢 Join HARO and Participate
Help A Reporter Out aka HARO is one of the best ways to get free press.

You get emails with different topics. You reply to the reporter and send an expert direct-to-the-point answer.

HARO isn’t the only game in town, I listed down some of the others here.

Here’s a tip: Use your mail to filter out the daily emails to find relevant phrases or words so you don’t have to check each one.

📣 Use and Monitor Hashtags like #PRRequest
Besides HARO type sites, there are hashtags out there that are used by journalists. It’s a way for them to get stories and participants. You can tweet out your topic with the hashtag or just monitor it.

Again, much like HARO, you need to pick your spots and be patient with this. Once it works for you, it’s gold.

🎣 Do a Link Bait
You basically write about something controversial, something timely, something that’s not the norm. Put it out in front of the right people and BAM! You get links!

I covered it a bit more on this post.

📛 Create Badges
This is old school but still effective today, especially for certain niches today.

You create a gimmick badge, you share it to the community with a link back to you to show their support or to brag about their level in the community.

It’s sort of like those blog directories that want you to put their link on your site first to confirm your ownership. Then you forget to remove the badge and you just gave them a free link. 🙂 

✅ Find Links Pointing to Your Social Media Account but Not Your Website
This is simple yet highly neglected.

By doing a simple backlink check on your own social profiles, you can dig out some pretty easy links.

To take this a step further, compile your competitor’s social accounts and check their links.

🥇 Use a Service? Submit a Testimonial!
If you use a service or bought a course or maybe you are a member of a group/newsletter, then you can try to share your learnings, testimonials and results to the owner.

If you are purely in this for the link, which I know you are, then make sure the site you are contacting has a testimonial area.

For a more extensive process, Bryan Harris, THE poster boy, explains this like no other.

🤴🏼 Support Crowd Funding Projects
I mentioned it briefly here but I have talked about this on the newsletter pretty extensively in the past.

You basically find crowd funding projects that offer a link from their websites. You support them and get the link when they go live.

🎗 Charities to Support
There are tons of charities you can support. Look around your local area and find those with websites.

Of course, you need to be aligned with their vision. >_> 

🎤 Q&A Sites
Q&A sites are mostly no-follow links but they bring in relevant traffic. They also rank pretty well and can get you spots in Google’s results.

That way, you can get more visibility, new users and eventually, new links.

🎭 Find Forums
Forum links are not dead. They are still really nice and they still bring in targeted traffic.

You just need to look for relevant forums and jump into the conversation… or you can manufacture a way to start a conversation and jump in later to pitch your link. 🙂

Google removed my fav filter, which is “discussions” so just for you, here’s my secret. This nifty Chrome plugin.

Note: Just don’t go out there buying mass forum signature and profile links.

👓 Research How an Author Did it
I love this technique because I can sort of see how someone I look up to got to where he is today.

I could see how hard they worked, how they did it, the creativity they showed and more!

I could then do something similar and set myself apart from what he already did.

I talked about this extensively on the newsletter and I mentioned it on my post over here.

📦 Supplier Websites
This is mainly for e-commerce websites where you have suppliers that have sites. Just ask for those links.

If you are a business or a blog and have someone you work with that has a site, then you can also ask for a link from them. Easy, high quality links are always welcome.

🙇🏼 Do Successful Content BETTER
As mentioned in my previous post, my go-to strategy when it comes to link building is simply just doing better content than what’s already working out there and get all their links!

It basically means that people are interested and you can get those links.

Brian Dean calls this the Skyscraper Technique so if you want to learn more about this, check out his blog post!

💬 Comment Scouting
Comment scouting is a way for me to simply get ideas from the comments area (be it in my own blog or another blog) and create content for whatever the need I see there.

Then you contact the commenters and commenters on other blog posts with a similar topic.

I am creating a post about this and I’ll be posting it soon. Signup for our newsletter so you never miss an update! 

③⓪① Build Category Specific Sites – 301 Them
Category pages on a website are probably the hardest pages to get links for. E-commerce sites will benefit from getting links to these pages greatly so one way of getting links is by creating separate websites.

Cultivate them, get them links and then 301 those domains to your main category. #WIN

Since you read all the way here, here are a few bonus strategies that aren’t in the infographic!

🗣 Speaking and Conference Links
Volunteer to speak in front of an organization or a conference. That’s almost a guaranteed link.

Does the conference have sponsors? They probably mentioned the conference on their website as well. Ask for a link back to your site!

💼 Management and Sponsor Links
Let’s say you are working on a celebrity’s site, then get a link from her agency’s site. Get links from her sponsors and magazines that mention her.

Are you getting paid to show off products? Get links from your sponsor’s website!

📓 WikiPedia
There are certainly different ways to get WikiPedia links. Knowing a moderator, sheer luck or WikiGrabber.

Use it and find a way to get a link. Don’t forget your etiquette.

🌆 Infographic Links
Lastly, infographic promotion. Submit it to directories, reach out to sites that already publish infographic posts or sites that can be granted exclusivity.

It’s really a versatile way to build links so you can get really creative with it.

BTW, if you liked this infographic, please use our embed code that you saw at the bottom of the infographic.

Tell us about it and we’ll help you promote it. We’ll even write a unique intro for you!

Everything Else

Once you get to this point, it’s basically icing on the cake. Most of these are things that can’t be qualified under the categories above.

Some are minor, some are really vital once you start ranking and some are just for maintenance.

👻 Social Media

I had to start it off with this.

When it comes to discussing social media’s direct effect to SEO, it will almost always be controversial. No matter what people say, social media is a part of our online and offline brands moving forward.

For me, social media does not have a direct effect, but a more indirect one. Actually, there are plenty of indirect ones!

The point of this being included here in the checklist is that you need to make sure that your website is set up properly and linked to your brand’s official social platforms.

  • Create those social media accounts – these basically help with SEO indirectly as they carry your brand name.
  • Adding social sharing buttons can potentially help you acquire new users and eventually links.
  • Link these social media accounts to your website – For example, Google+ can ask you to verify your site and page.
  • Also, you can use Schema to link your official social profiles.

💸 Conversion Rate Optimization

CRO, which is an art on it’s own, does have processes that affect your overall SEO. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to convert more of your existing visitors.

Some of the things you need to do are:

  • Continue to speed up your website
  • Check your bounce rates
  • Be sure you don’t cause duplicate content when A/B testing
  • Track if you are ranking the correct page (that is converting)
  • Test User Experience (Tools like Usertesting.com help a lot)

Sound familiar? They should be.

🤔 Knowledge Graph

The knowledge graph is still a mystery for many. If your brand is still not an entity within the Knowledge Graph, then you need to start taking some steps to include yourself there.

LeapFroggr Entity

📉 Rank Tracking

Rank tracking is not as talked about as it used to be but if you are serious about your SEO work, then it’s still a must.

The Google Webmaster Tools data you get about your rankings are simply an average of where you place.

If you want more accurate data, be it local or country specific, then you need to track it yourself, be it using software (we use Rank Tracker and Advanced Web Ranking) or one of the many cloud hosted rank tracking tools out there.

Just to throw it in here: I get this question a lot. Does it hurt your ranking if you keep checking the rankings daily? I haven’t seen any evidence of it as I track things pretty aggressively.

👩‍❤️‍💋‍👨 Reputation Management

Skeptical?

Let’s start by mentioning that you need to claim your brand’s identity everywhere. It will save you a ton of time and headaches in the future when the brand you are working on is big enough.

You also need to monitor mentions about your brands either to stop negative things from escalating or get links.

So, can online reputation management be a part of SEO? Definitely.

☁️ Ongoing Server Configuration Checks

Your server will need to be tweaked regularly. Especially as you grow your traffic more and more.

The last thing you want is a slow site or a site that is down for long periods of time.

Things can get misconfigured, it’s just the way it is so doing regular checks are important.

🚵🏻 Other Avenues to Improve Branding Online

You can do more besides traditional link building.

You can build up your brands on different ecosystems that are also crawled by Google.

From YouTube, to Apple and even Amazon. These are all major search engines on their own and building your brand within them can add to your SEO… and they take up space in Google’s results so that’s another bonus for you.

🗞 Keep Up with New Google Guidelines

Google’s guidelines will keep on changing. It’s just the nature of the game.

If you don’t monitor SEO news regularly, make it a point to pick your favorite SEO websites and subscribe to their newsletter (like ours) or RSS feed. Schedule a time in the month to do quick reading sessions to keep yourself up to date.

✔️ Schedule On-Page SEO Checks

As you publish more and more content, things can get lost in the shuffle.

Maybe you don’t have a system in place yet for other authors that publish within your site. Maybe you are just forgetful when it comes to SEO and just want to focus on creating content.

Doing a regular on-page SEO checkup will only help you in the long run so don’t overlook this.

Screaming Frog is our favorite but Google Webmaster Tools can also give you some good data.

☑ Schedule Regular Backlink Profile Checks

This is probably the most ignored thing EVER. I cannot stress the importance of this especially if you are already working on a popular site or a competitive market.

Things can go wrong rather quickly (penalty/de-indexed) or it can be the reason why your site is being held back from improving in the rankings.

Checking your link profile regularly will help you see what’s wrong. Maybe you are over using your anchor text, maybe somebody is sending you spammy links or maybe you just aren’t doing enough.

I would suggest using Ahrefs.com and even Google Webmaster Tools when doing link profile checks.

Now Here’s How You Can Put It to Use

As I mentioned earlier in the article, we created a FREE SEO checklist that you can download and print out.

It’s basically a group of printable checklists, including 2 checklists for on-page and off-page local SEO.

Here’s where you can download the checklist:
SEO Checklist Download

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106 Comments

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  • Super infographic and checklist, I will be sure to link back to it and send others this way. Thanks for the work you put into it! – Eric

    Reply
    • Thank you Eric! We’d really appreciate that very much!
      Yeah, we did put in a bit of time into this. 😀

  • Hey Man, what a comprehensive and super cool infographic and checklist!! A must download infographic if you ask me.

    Reply
    • Thanks Jomer. I appreciate it a lot! 😀 Enjoy your week!

  • Hi Denis,
    This is a great resource you have shared here. The team at Leapfroggr.com has done a wonderful job by compiling this infographic.

    The truth is that many newbies never understand what real SEO implies and many expert bloggers forget the necessary steps to take.

    Thankfully, the SEO checklist shared here covers most of the insights needed to do Search Engine Optimization.

    Just downloaded the PDF format!

    Reply
    • Thanks Sunday! I hope it does get to reach a lot of people and help them out. That’s the goal for this and for all of my other blog posts.
      It’s why I continue to write about these things 😀

      Enjoy the download and enjoy your week!

  • Hi Dennis,

    Wow..This sure is amazing! Love the infographic because it is so easy to follow. You sure have covered all the bases here. This information is priceless. I can see how much effort you put into this.

    Having this checklist is something I would actually pay for! What I especially like in the infographic is that you mention not to forget newbies. That is one thing many people forget. I always keep them in mind, cater to them, and they do make the best followers lol.

    When you look at the whole picture of what we need to do, taking action on each and every point will surely get you going. Thanks so much for putting this together.

    -Donna

    Reply
    • Hi Donna!

      Yeah, I hid myself inside a hole so I could pump this out. LOL
      Thanks for loving it and sharing it out! I’m sure some of your followers will find it useful somehow 🙂

      Have a great week!

  • Hey Seymour,

    You have really done your due diligence with this post. When I first started some five years ago I ran into the same thing. I didn’t find the information I needed about SEO and how to incorporate it into my content.

    Newbies as well as veterans are really going to appreciate this article. I can see that I’m only scratching the surface when it comes to optimizing my site for search engines. That sad thing is that the majority of bloggers aren’t even scratching the surface.

    It’s true that you may get by on just building relationships. That’s how businesses done for so long, but it’s also helpful to implement these SEO tactics since we’really in the information age. Why let it go to waste.

    Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a great weekend!

    Reply
    • Hey Sherman!

      That’s right. Optimize everything! Including relationships! 😀

      Let me know if you need anything. Enjoy your week!

  • Hi Dennis,

    This IS amazing 🙂

    What an awesome infographic as it is so well made and very easy to understand, provided you follow all the points! Lots of learning still to do but one keeps trying to put in the best efforts, and while one does most of what you mentioned, there is still such a lot to do!

    I appreciate the hard work and efforts you put into making this infographic and writing this detailed post, which you are SO good at. I’d be pinning this right away, and sharing it all over. Of course, this makes my homework for the weekend….lol…to absorb all that you’ve written 🙂

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice weekend 🙂

    Reply
    • When you put it like that, I sometimes feel bad that you have to read my stuff. Haha.

      I really appreciate the shares! Let me know if you need anything and I hope you have a GREAT week!

  • Dennis, all I can say it “Wow”! Ultimate checklist is right – what a great resource. I’m taking my checklist and hybernating for a week to start working on it.

    I SO wish I had this when I was a begnning blogger. Super great!

    Thanks,
    Sue
    P.S. Thanks for the shout-out!

    Reply
    • LOL! You are probably doing (have done) a lot of these already! You’ve been killing it recently! Let me know if you need help with anything! Keep up the awesome work and have a great week!

  • The real ultimate and amazing AIO SEO checklist.
    Thanks and appreciate you Dannis.

    Reply
  • Hello Dennis, Thanks for your this complete guideline. Really good one indeed. This is my first time visit on your Blog . Really Good design. I am thinking to start my new Blog as well i am thinking to build up MY NAME WILL BE MY BRAND. So, TonmoyParves.com And i was looking for design. I want to go with your this blog design. Would you please share What theme you use for your blog?

    Thanks in Advance. Happy Blogging. Have a Good week end

    Cheers

    Reply
    • Hi Tonmoy, check out themeforest. There are a ton of designs there.
      Ours is a modified theme from there.
      Good luck and have a great week!

  • Hi Dennis,

    This is the most detailed infographic I have ever seen about SEO (or maybe any topic). I have been looking at it for a while and I’m thinking about everything I’m not doing that I should be doing. I might share this in a blog post on my site if that’s ok with you, I’ll be sure to do it the right way so you’ll get credited for it and get a link back to your site.

    Thanks.

    Reply
    • That would be awesome Jens! Really, highly appreciated! Glad you can find use for this and let me know if you need help with anything. Enjoy your week!

  • This is a great resource. I can’t come up with anything I would add so this might be the ultimate SEO checklist – good job!

    Reply
    • Thank you Torben! I appreciate that very much!

  • Hey Dennis, this SEO checklist is going to be useful for many. One will be able to know all the points he needs to keep in mind while doing SEO for his new blog or even his old blog.

    According to me, content and ON Page SEO are the most important things. We gradually build backlinks with time and we just need to focus on getting quality links.

    I hope that you’ll keep writing such type of posts on SEO as many bloggers want to learn lot of things regarding SEO.

    Reply
    • Thanks Mohit! I will try my best to keep producing these. I really do hope this gets to help a lot of people out there 🙂
      Let me know if you need help with anything. Enjoy your week!

  • Hi Dennis,

    Wow! This is fabulous! The infographic is easy to follow and full of golden information. I love how you have taken it a step further and included the text to explain each further. Absolutely no shallow content here 🙂 Then, you’ve offered the free download, which I have just signed up for.

    I appreciate all the work you have put into this and for sharing your expertise. I wish that I had had this when I started with SEO fifteen years ago. I will be sharing this!

    Reply
    • Thanks Robin! Whoah, you’ve been at this for so long!

      3/4 of those wont even be there 15 years ago haha! I would just put up a stupid looking landing page with a focused offer, hide lots of keyword text with the same background color. That would be my SEO checklist back then LOL!

  • Very intersting post. I’d like to print it and pin it in my office. Thank you very much indeed

    Reply
    • Thanks Esta! Let me know if you have any questions.

  • Hey Dennis,

    Thanks for putting up this awesome post. The infographic is great and is packed with loads of information! And the accompanying blog post says it all in a descriptive manner. very well done – and you haven’t missed a thing I guess.

    It is very important that we do a combination of both on page and off page optimization when it comes to SEO. When we say on-page, it is not just with the content but also with all the technical stuff like sitemap, urls, site speed and stuff like that!

    Thanks for taking the time and effort! Have a great week 🙂

    Cheers,
    Jane.

    Reply
    • Hey Jane!

      Thanks!

      Glad you liked it! It did take some effort to put this together but it’s worth it. As long as it can help even just 1 person out there, then that’s already a big accomplishment.

      I’m sure I still missed some things. Let me know when something comes to mind 🙂

  • SEO checklist is essential. Its a good system to follow when you’re working. I use a checklist myself just to make sure I know the things I need to do.

    Reply
    • Thanks Leo. That’s right, we could all use a checklist to make sure we don’t miss anything 🙂

  • No wonder it takes you so long to put blog posts together Dennis, because when you do, you absolutely smash them out of the park!

    Haven’t seen an infographic/cheat sheet about SEO as in-depth as this before, the 1000 social shares and counting is testament to its quality.

    All the best,

    Luke
    Intergeek

    Reply
    • Hey Luke!

      The infographic did take some time. It took me a day or 2 to actually finish the text part. I can churn out content as long as you lock me up in a cave. If not, you’ll just catch me playing with my baby. LOL.

      Kidding aside, thanks for checking it out! Glad you think it’s worthy enough. I’ll definitely update this soon as I have some more things to add 😀

  • Hey Dennis,

    Great post and infographic. This was SUPER Informative and just like you said, I wish something like this was around before. On page SEO is something that’s important to me to really start doing and I’m going to follow this beautiful checklist you put together here to get that done.

    Thanks.

    – Andrew

    Reply
    • Thanks Andrew! That’s music to my ears! The purpose of this is to help people and even if just 1 person uses it, then it’s good enough 🙂

      Thanks for dropping by!

  • Hi Dennis,

    I can only echo the previous comments here – what a fantastic post and infographic!! You must have been working on this one for a long-time.
    I think most of us probably do little bits and pieces from each section, some regularly and some occasionally. I guess we need to start being consistent with our approach and making sure we follow the applicable steps.

    Thanks again Dennis!
    – David

    Reply
    • Hi David!

      Yeah, preparation took some time, the infographic also took some time. I’ll definitely be updating this soon with a couple more things.

      Glad you liked it and I appreciate you leaving your thoughts over here 🙂

  • Hi,
    Really superb infographic and post is very helpful for me Thanks for guide about Seo .Thanks for sharing keep up it
    Have a nice week ahead.

    Reply
    • Hi Bilal,

      Thanks! Awesome that you liked it. If you have any questions, just let me know. Enjoy the weekend!

  • Hi Dennis,

    Wow! This is one of the most comprehensive SEO checklists (guide) I have come across. The Internet mostly promotes nowadays that the days of SEO are gone. But I never believed that. SEO is all about delivering the most relevant search results and as long as we are delivering all the required factors on a web page, why shouldn’t it rank?

    There’s so much to be learned from your post. And now I feel like there’s so much to be done and people are just lost in saying that SEO is dead. I think it I have found the ultimate checklist and now I will run my campaigns around these strategies.
    There will be thousands who will thank you for this!

    Simply amazing! Thank again!

    Reply
    • Hi Nisha!

      I’m stoked that you liked it!

      A lot of people will knock SEO off nowadays because they are piss scared of Google since they got kicked in the past but we’re basically optimizing things and not doing some crazy obvious ways to manipulate rankings.

      Thanks for sharing this out! Keep rocking it!

  • Hi Dennis,
    Very..very…great infographic. I think i’m gonna share this in my next blog post if that’s ok with you.

    Thanks..

    Reply
    • Hi Hendra!

      Sure! Go ahead 🙂

      Glad you liked it!

  • What is the alternative for sitemap? I got about +30000 articles and I’m afraid Google or Bing webmaster tools can’t index all the url’s.

    Reply
    • Hi Rudy!

      Don’t worry about that. They will still crawl those and they will determine if they need to index the page based on the content. Even without a sitemap Google can crawl your pages but adding that in does speed up the process.

  • Solid! Very solid checklist. Thanks for the message about it.

    Reply
  • Hi Dennis,
    that’s a very interesting infographic!
    Building pillar articles is one of the ways to get both Google and readers attention, right?

    Keep providing such useful information, my friend.
    Great work!

    Reply
    • That’s right. It will take a lot of effort though haha. Thanks Erik!

  • You have a great SEO checklist here. Off-page optimization and building links are the hardest and most important aspect of SEO.

    The infographic is very useful and anyone can save it on their computer. They can use it and check tips and ways their whenever they want if they forgot anything about SEO.

    Thanks for sharing this! This checklist is designed to be a baseline for secure good search rankings with a new website, or a website you are relaunching.

    Reply
    • Thank you Metz! It’s been a while since I last saw you.

  • Very useful info graphics and I guess seo checklist is always necessary to avoid any kind of mistakes. I’ll have to save this awesome infographics,

    Thanks

    Reply
    • Thanks Samantha! You should. It’ll be really handy long term 🙂

  • First of you, thanks for share this one. Really Great info graphics for ever i never seen before about SEO checklist. And it’s really an important matter. Many bloggers or digital marketers don’t do this one So, they become failure and give up..

    BTW, I wanna ask you a one question. How you made this info graphic? Any online tools or you hire any designer to do this? If yes then how much the cost to design this one ?

    Reply
    • Hi Tonmoy, thanks! There are a lot of online tools you can use for infographics. Canva recently made this possible. Piktochart has been around forever. I have a designer on the team that does this. Thanks for dropping by! 🙂

  • Hi Dennis, your info graphics is top-notch I must say. Haven’t seen a thorough break-down of SEO checklist like you outlined here. Bookmarked! Would be using this page as a guiding light in fixing things needed for my blog’s SEO. Thanks once again.

    Reply
  • Dennis, Recently I started a new blog and was looking for seo checklist to make it search engine friendly. I visited Brian Dean’s (My link building hero) Twitter profile and finally came at my destination. It is really awesome and useful for me. Thanks Dennis. Your this infographic saved my too much time.

    Reply
    • Thanks Pappu! Glad you found your way over here! 🙂

  • I love the infographic! It’s so nice to look at, but it’s super informative, too. Thanks for making it available as a PDF download!

    One thing I would suggest is for your Create Social Media profiles item, an Instagram icon should be there as well. I mean, Pinterest has its own sub-section! If you’re a fashion brand, it’s a MUST to have an IG online presence.

    Reply
    • Thanks Kimmy!

      I primarily look at IG as just part of branding at the moment so in terms of direct SEO impact, I didnt think about including it. Will squeeze that in in a future update and show a way to integrate it with SEO 🙂

  • ➤ Hi, Dennis,

    Truly EPIC post and infographic. I’m such a visual learner, so this is perfect for me.

    I never listen to recommendations either, and your infographic is long, awesome, but not the longest I’ve seen. I’ve seen some over 10k px.

    This coupled with your guest post on my site, there’s NO stopping me now…. 🙂

    Thanks ever so much for putting this together!
    Carol Amato

    Reply
    • Really? Damn it. I shouldn’t have removed 2 sub parts then!

  • Wow, what a superb check list. Thanks for all your hard work.

    Let no blogging client try to say that SEO should be done free as part of their site build. Obviously I do the basics, but people don’t appreciate how many other pointers there are to consider. I’ll know where to send them now.

    Enjoy the rest of your week, Joy

    Reply
    • Thanks Joy! Let me know if you have questions!

      Enjoy the weekend!

  • I just printed this infographic and gave it to my team because it covers everything which is needed for SEO. Thanks a lot for sharing this.

    Reply
  • Definitely extensive, yet looking as such a checklist can also be overwhelming initially. I guess taking it slow, one step at a time, it the way to do SEO things and it also applies to implementing each step of this graph.

    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Thanks! Yeah just look at it one at a time. You dont have to do everything in a week. 🙂

  • Having a SEO checklist can really help you out for your projects. Some of the items on your checklist may not apply to others but surely it can help you determine what you need to check and it’s also a step-by-step guide on where you start on your task.

    Reply
    • That’s right Leo. It has something for every niche 🙂
      Thanks for checking it out!

  • Just enjoyed this seo cheklist.

    Reply
    • Thanks for checking it out Mandeep

  • NicePost , DENNIS .

    It is the most complete SEO checklist, I have ever gone through.

    Reply
  • Hi Dennis,
    I recently saw this post on twitter so i decided to stop by for the first time. I really enjoyed reading this post. The infographic is wow and it explains everything a blogger needs to know about SEO. This checklist will always come in handy for me.
    Thanks for putting so much time and effort in creating this awesome post.
    I’ll spread the word.
    Have a great day!

    Reply
    • Awesome, thank you!!! I appreciate it a lot! Let me know if you need anything.

  • Hi,
    I am a big fan of backlinko and I usually follow his checklist but dennis this is even better than what brian has done. Thanks a lot for it.

    Reply
    • Wow! Thanks Andrew! I love Brian’s work so that’s a HUGE compliment.

  • Hi Dennis,

    I just Saw your name mentioned in Sherman Smith blog so decide to Visit your blog. And found this Awesome article related to SEO which I was looking from long time.

    Bookmarked this article for further read.

    Thank you

    Reply
    • Glad you liked it Saurabh! Put it to good use!

  • Hi,
    It is very helpful post for me Thanks for sharing with us keep up it
    Have a nice week Ahead

    Reply
  • Hello, Thank you for sharing really a nice information and data. It is helpful for new and mid-level users.

    Reply
  • Wow this summarizes very well all the things that goe behind a successful SEO campaign. Well done!
    Sharing this for sure 🙂

    Reply
  • Jeez, what a list of information. This could be pretty cool if it was repurposed as an interactive list. You could have it as a download for users. Just a thought

    Reply
    • Thanks Steve. I will consider it. 🙂

  • In a few words I would like to say that, this is the Bible for Search Engine Optimizers. I was trying to make something like this for past 3 years.
    Awesome work Dennis, thanks for sharing this with us.

    Reply
  • The best article, thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  • I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon.

    Reply
  • This is a great checklist for SEO. Search engine optimization is ever growing in importance and relevance these days and this checklist certainly does the field justice. You cover all the important aspects very nicely from research to on-page and off-page SEO. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  • Indeed a great SEO checklist and inforgraphics.

    To make a profitable blog, keyword research have always a major role, We always need to target the right and profitable keywords to make the blog successful and to find such keywords, Long Tail Pro is the best tool I have ever used.

    Google Keyword Planner has now stopped showing the monthly search volume for their users, so LTP is recommended for them.

    Either way, Thanks for sharing this amazing article.

    Reply
  • I had never seen such an Awesome Info-graphic till now. Hats off to you

    Thanks a lot 🙂

    Reply
  • Great blog post. This is exactly what I am focusing on myself.

    Reply
  • Hey Dennis,

    I hope you are Good Nice piece of Article writing!!!

    SEO is the most important thing every blogger need after design his blog. I am happy to find this SEO checklist.

    Thanks for posting.

    Best wishes

    Sandeep Sitoke

    Reply
  • Hey DENNIS SEYMOUR,

    Brilliant SEO Checklist indeed!

    I’ve been long time fan of you in tweets. But unfortunately, I found this post on Ninja Outreach SEO and influencers post.

    Here, I discovered top SEO Checklist with world most famous influencer marketer.

    I noticed important points and some of your crucial replies. Hope that works amazing.

    Keep up the good work. Thanks!

    Reply
  • Hey Dennis,

    I hope you are Good Nice piece of Article writing!!!

    Reply
  • Great infographic and checklist. Thank you

    Reply
  • Hi Dennis,

    I’ve followed you for long time.
    This is indeed an incredible list for SEO. Site improvement is always developing in significance and pertinence nowadays. You cover all the critical angles pleasantly.
    Keep up the good work. Thanks!

    Reply
  • Hi Dennis,

    This is one of the in-depth and best articles I have ever come across on the internet. I liked the way how you put up Infographic first and then kept on explaining SEO checklist including On Page SEO and other important stuff. Keep up the good work!

    Looking forward to reading such more articles from you.

    Thanks,
    Mohit

    Reply
  • Hi Dennis brilliant seo checklist. Each and every point you have covered on seo in details for on page and off page. love to follow these tips.

    Reply
  • Thanks to share with us this impressive article it really helpful

    Reply
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