I posted a few days back in our Facebook group, offering to do an SEO review on 10 websites belonging to businesses in the scalp micropigmentation industry. In response to requests that followed, this SEO review is for Nadia of www.beautepermanentmakeup.co.uk and was requested by Sean Ibz.
During this review, I examined the following:
- On-page SEO elements of a typical page on each website
- The overall structure of each website
- Social proof and reviews
- Internal linking
- Inbound links and spam score
- Speed and security
I won’t explain each of these in detail because I’m hoping their explanations will become clear during the assessment. So here we go!
on page seo elements of a typical page
The first thing I look for are pages specifically targeting keywords for the primary services offered. Your home page is not the place for this. Google wants your home page to act as a gateway to the information pages on your site, and it’s actually quite hard to rank a home page for a big search term.
Nadia’s primary service is permanent makeup, so she needs a page that screams relevancy for this keyword. When reviewing the website, I found a great page for this (visit page), however there are some issues that need to be resolved.
- There is no H1 headline. This is like the main headline in a newspaper, it tells Google what your page is all about. You should only have one per page, but every page should have one. It seems this important headline is missing on all pages on this website, and this will be holding back her SEO. For example on Nadia’s Permanent Makeup page, the main headline ‘Permanent Makeup’ is formatted as a H2, not a H1 as it should be.
- The page makes extensive use of H3 tags, but these should really be H2 tags.
- There’s plenty of images which increase the relevancy of the page for the term, but they need ALT tags.
- For such a competitive term, the page doesn’t have enough text content. Main pages like these need about 1000 words to have a decent chance of ranking well.
overall website structure
This website adopts a flat hierarchical structure, but for the purpose of what this website is trying to do, that’s fine.
Nadia is missing a trick though. Each of her permanent makeup services (lips, brows etc) really need separate pages so her website can rank for a wider range of searches. These should be child pages under the main Permanent Makeup page, and should be linked to from that page.
Each child page should offer a decent amount of information about each service. maybe 500 words each plus a few before and after images.
social proof and reviews
The website links to two social media channels: Facebook and Instagram. Both accounts are fairly active, which sends a signal to Google that this website represents an active business, and the Facebook account has some decent reviews.
What surprised me however is that I can’t find any connection from the website to Nadia’s excellent Google Business profile (visit page), where she has quite a lot of reviews. Google reviews are a powerful SEO signal, so although the Google Business profile does link to the website, the website should have a fourth social link to the Google Business profile.
I recommend Nadia and Sean also look for a way to feed their reviews to the website, like we do for our advertisers (example here). This way, they can read reviews without leaving the website.
An internal link is where you link from one page of your website to another page of your website. These are in-content links and do not include links within menus or the footer. Internal links are critical for SEO because they help Google to understand what your website is about, and which are your most important pages.
The website appears to be well linked internally.
inbound links and spam score
Aside from your website content, inbound links, sometimes called ‘backlinks’, are by far the most important part of your SEO strategy. An inbound link is where another website links to your website, and Google views this as a vote of confidence. Generally speaking, websites do not link to spammy or illegitimate websites, so if someone is linking to you, it reinforces the message that your website is the real deal.
All inbound links are not created equal, in fact, too many poor quality links can actually hurt your site. You should be aiming for links from authoritative websites (local news websites, big blog sites, local business associations etc), or from websites that are highly relevant to our industry (like Team Micro, What Clinic etc). The best links are both authoritative and relevant.
We use Moz to measure your inbound link power. They produce a metric called Domain Authority (DA) which is a score from 1-100. Higher scores are granted to websites with a good number of authoritative links, and a low number of poor quality links from spammy websites.
It is important to note that the scale is not linear…. getting from DA1 to DA10 is relatively easy, but jumping to DA20 is MUCH harder. Most sites never make it past DA15. Team Micro is a DA32 website, but its taken years of diligent SEO to get there.
Your spam score represents the % of websites with similar inbound link profiles that have been penalized or banned by Google. For obvious reasons, you want to keep this low, like less than 2%.
BeautePermanentMakeup.co.uk has a DA9 score and a spam rating of 2% which is low for a competitive area like Kent where they are based.
You need a paid Moz subscription to see all the data, but you can see the top line stats here, and I’ve included screenshots taken from our Moz account below.
moz overview for BeautePermanentMakeup.co.uk
moz spam score for BeautePermanentMakeup.co.uk
speed and security
Your website speed is a huge ranking factor now, as Google now uses mobile-first indexing. This is understandable, especially in the SMP and PMU industry where around 80% of your website visitors are using mobile devices to access your content.
Security is also important, and directly influences rankings. Your website should be on https:// not http:// and this is mandatory if you are processing customer data online.
We use GT Metrix, the industry standard, to measure speed. Nadia’s website is getting a speed rating of 38% and takes 15.5 seconds to load, which is really slow (verify here).
A score of 38% is low enough to have a significant impact on Nadia’s rankings, and the load time of 15.5 seconds is very noticeable when browsing. It was quite irritating to browse, so I’d imagine a lot of customers would be put off and would simply hit the back button and go elsewhere.
Nadia’s website is not secure, being http:// when it needs to be https://. This is a big problem for SEO and needs to be resolved.
The following actions should be undertaken as soon as possible to strengthen the SEO of this website:
- H1 headlines need to be implemented sitewide. One H1 at the top of each page that includes the main keyword the page is targeting.
- The H3 tags throughout the site need to be changed to H2 tags, unless there is a specific in-content reason not to.
- Images need ALT tags.
- The main permanent makeup page needs more content, at least 1000 words of text.
- The website should be connected to the Google Business account and if possible, Google reviews should be dynamically fed into the site. Copy and paste is no good, it needs to be a dynamic generation.
- A small number of quality inbound links are needed, as the current DA9 rating is not enough to compete in Kent. Maybe reach out to local news websites, but you’ll need a few links and be aiming for a DA of around 16-18.
- The speed of this website is a real problem. The photos on the site need to be optimized and a suitable caching system should be implemented to prevent the website from loading from scratch every time the site is requested by a visitors device.
- The website needs an SSL security certificate so https:// can be implemented.
These are additional steps that every website owner should take. We didn’t verify these, or were unable to, for this specific website, but make sure you have these covered:
- Register and verify your website in Google Search Console.
- Create an XML sitemap and register it with GSC (above).
- If you have a .com domain, register your target country with GSC (above).
- Make sure you have at least 10 citations. These are mentions of your business online including name, address and phone number data (NAP), and may or may not include a link to your website. Good sources are Yelp, Yellow Pages, local business directories etc.
- Disavow any spammy links coming into your website using the Google Disavow Tool.
- Make sure you have at least a few reviews on the most important review sites – Google Business, Facebook and Yelp.
- Ensure your website links to all your social media accounts including (if you have them) Facebook, Instagram, Google Business, Pinterest, YouTube etc.
- You need dedicated pages for each of your key services.
- Your address and contact information needs to be included in full on your contact page, matching the format shown on your Google Business listing.