Get Your Website Ready for the New Year With This End-of-Year Audit Checklist

December 28, 2022    Reading Time: 4 Minutes

As we approach the end of the year, it’s important to take a look at your website and make sure that it is ready for the new year. A website audit can help you identify any potential issues that need to be fixed before January 1st. In this blog post, we will outline a checklist of items that you should review as part of your website audit. Let’s get started!

1. Security

One of the most important aspects of your website is security. It’s essential to make sure that your website is protected against any potential threats that could compromise its data or functionality. Take a look at your current security measures and determine if they are up-to-date and secure enough for the new year. If not, now is the time to make any needed changes.

Security improvements:

  • Update all software to the latest versions
  • Implement an SSL Certificate
  • Enable two-factor authentication
  • Monitor your website for any malicious activity
  • Integrate a WAF (web application firewall)

2. Performance

Your website performance also needs to be evaluated. Slow page load times and other performance issues can hurt your website’s user experience and SEO rankings. Make sure that you review your website’s speed and make any necessary improvements before the start of the new year.

Performance improvements:

  • Optimize all images
  • Use a content delivery network (CDN)
  • Enable caching
  • Minify and compress files
  • Reduce redirects

3. Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization (SEO) is an important factor for any website trying to reach its target audience. Make sure that you review your current SEO strategy and make any necessary changes or improvements. This could include updating page titles, meta tags, and content so that it is optimized for search engines.

SEO improvements:

  • Update page titles, meta tags, and content
  • Increase website speed
  • Improve website structure and navigation
  • Generate more quality backlinks
  • Create a sitemap to submit to search engines

4. Mobile Optimization

These days, it’s essential for websites to be optimized for mobile devices. Make sure that your website is responsive and loads quickly on all mobile devices. You should also review your website’s design and layout to make sure that it looks great on smaller screens.

Mobile optimizations:

  • Make sure your website is responsive
  • Optimize for both portrait and landscape modes
  • Check clickable areas for accuracy and responsiveness
  • Reduce page load times

5. Accessibility

Website accessibility is also important for ensuring that everyone can access and use your website. Make sure that your website is WCAG 2.0 compliant and that it follows best practices for accessibility.

Accessibility improvements:

  • Add alternative text to all images
  • Include captions with videos
  • Provide keyboard navigation options
  • Check color contrast ratios

6. User Experience

The user experience is essential for keeping visitors engaged with your website. Evaluate your current design and layout to see if any areas need improvement. Make sure that your website is easy to use and navigate, and provide helpful resources or contact information when needed.

User Experience improvements:

  • Make sure navigation is intuitive and easy to use
  • Ensure all pages are loading correctly
  • Reduce the number of steps in forms and checkout processes
  • Include helpful resources or contact information

7. Analytics

Be sure to review your website’s analytics data to see how your visitors are interacting with your website. This will help you identify any areas that need improvement so that you can make the necessary changes.

Analytics improvements:

  • Track user behavior on your website
  • Identify trends and patterns in user data
  • Test different versions of pages to optimize for performance
  • Set up goals and track conversions

8. Backup & Disaster Recovery

Make sure that you have a reliable backup and disaster recovery plan in place for your website. This will ensure that your website is protected from any potential threats or disasters and can quickly be restored if needed.

Backup and Disaster Recovery Improvements:

  • Set up daily backups of your website
  • Test your backups regularly
  • Implement a disaster recovery plan
  • Make sure data is stored in a secure location

9. Check Broken Links

Check for any broken or dead links on your website and make sure to fix them. This will help improve user experience and make sure that visitors can access the content they are looking for.

Broken Links Improvements:

  • Run regular scans to check for broken links
  • Fix any redirects or page 404 errors
  • Update outdated content

10. Check all Pages for Grammar, Spelling and Other Typos

Grammar and spelling errors can be distracting for users, so make sure to check all of your website’s pages for typos. You should also run spell-check software to catch any mistakes you may have missed.

Grammar and Spelling Improvements:

  • Run a grammar and spell check on all pages
  • Review content manually for errors
  • Update outdated content
  • Check language for clarity and accuracy
  • Use a professional proofreader for complex pages.

11. Test All Forms

Make sure to test all forms and functionality on your website. This will help ensure that visitors can use the site without any issues, and it can also be used to identify any potential problems or bugs.

Forms Improvements:

  • Test all forms for accuracy and reliability
  • Check contact forms for proper setup and email delivery
  • Check all payment forms for accuracy and security
  • Test search functions and filters

After completing these steps, you will have a website that is ready for the new year. Congratulations! Happy New Year from all of us at Graticle! We hope you have a prosperous 2023.

Written by Shawn Hooghkirk on December 28, 2022

Shawn is the President of Graticle, Inc.

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Shawn did an amazing job developing our website! It looks polished & professional, just like we hoped for. We were extremely pleased with Shawn’s attention to detail and his kind, thoughtful, patient way he conducted business. We highly recommend Graticle, Inc. for your website design needs and look forward to receiving continued top-level service, from this outstanding company, in the years to come!

Cathie Groesbeck

Owner

The Gifted Kitchen

thegiftedkitchen.com

Longview, WA

We absolutely loved working with Shawn on our business cards and would 100% recommend Graticle to other business owners! Our business cards turned out even better than we could have imagined, which is amazing because we really had no idea what we wanted and gave Shawn very little to work off of, but he made it happen! Communication and customer service were top notch. Shawn answered all our questions and he even recorded a video explaining his design process, which is something we’ve never experienced with other designers. Graticle has been one of the most professional businesses we’ve ever worked with and we look forward to working with them in the future. Thanks Shawn!

Isabela & Eliana Valderrama

Owners

E & V Tax Services & Bookkeeping

Vancouver, Washington