It’s amazing how many times I get this question. Most times it’s done to see what competitive edge one site might have over another. To get started, there is no 100% absolute way to know for sure that a site is optimized unless you know the team or person working on it. There are many CMS systems that do a decent job of getting “optimized” pages built for sites.
But, there are some pieces that you can look at to take an educated guess to see if a site is indeed optimized.
1.) Title tag
A well-optimized site will have the keyword phrase placed first, followed by the branding (if at all). You can see this in the toolbar of any Internet browser, or by viewing hte source code and looking to see what’s in the
2.) Meta tags
Are they using the meta tags properly? Some CMS systems will throw in a ton of keywords into the meta keywords tag. A sure sign of optimization not being properly done. Also, is the description tag being used to talk about the page? Another dead giveaway to cms wide sites is that the same message will appear throughout the site. A well-optimized site will have a unique description for every page.
There are other meta tags that can be used, but those we’ll save for another discussion!
3.) H1 tag
Until Google moves away from their love affair of the H1 tag, optimized sites will have the matching keyword from the title and meta tag enclosed within the page’s H1 tag.
A well-optimized page will have the keyword appearing in the first paragraph found on the page. Keep in mind that you can get ranked without having this in place, but it certainly helps your chances if you have the keyword phrase in your content.
Going slightly outside the scope of what makes a site optimized, is to look to see if the site in question is ranked in Google for the keyword they are focusing on. They might not appear for a few pages, but they might just be getting started and haven’t showed up on the first page just yet.
There are other parts of a site that you could look at to tell if it’s optimized, but this is the spot-check method that can be used to quickly determine the probability of a site being optimized.
Thanks for reading,