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How to Conduct Website Audits Using Screaming Frog SEO Spider

How do you maintain an eye for your technical search engine marketing?

Technical SEO is critical if you want to get in advance in the seek engine results. However, it may be tricky to display and implement, in particular in case you don’t have technical or net improvement revel in.

A complete technical SEO device assist you to recognize how your internet site is appearing and provide you with brief wins while optimizing your pages.

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One of my favorite auditing tools is Screaming Frog search engine optimization Spider. It’s great for checking your website for technical faults and finding brief wins to improve your search engine scores!

In this post, I’m going to introduce you to Screaming Frog and show you all the approaches you may use it to enhance the user experience of your website. I’ll also talk you through the Screaming Frog pricing shape and what options there are inside the market.

Let’s begin!

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What Is Screaming Frog?

Screaming Frog is a UK-based technical search engine optimization consulting corporation. They advanced a device designed for search engine marketing auditing in 2010 called “Screaming Frog SEO Spider,” normally known as “Screaming Frog.”

You can use Screaming Frog to move slowly the character URLs of a particular internet site.

The Screaming Frog search engine optimization spider works precisely how spiders for search engines like google and yahoo like Google and Bing do. It analyzes the HTML code of the beginning web page, identifying factors like headings, pix, meta descriptions, web page titles, and structured statistics.

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It then follows internal hyperlinks inside the HTML code to identify different pages, reviewing them inside the same way.

Screaming Frog gives this records in its particular interface. This affords search engine optimization specialists with a wealth of valuable statistics they are able to use to repair problems that could otherwise have an effect on a internet site’s search engine scores. For example, broken links, page loading velocity, and copy content.

Installing and Getting Started
In a global of cloud-based totally programs, Screaming Frog stands proud in that it’s miles computing device-primarily based. This way you need to deploy it onto your computer to apply it.

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There are blessings to this. You don’t have to log right into a cloud-based account whenever, and it’s more secure as your statistics is stored in your own pc.

Screaming Frog is available for Windows, MacOS, Ubuntu, and Fedora. The step-by way of-step system I’ve listed underneath is for Windows, however it may be barely special depending in your operating machine.

System Requirements
Screaming Frog recommends that you have 16GB of RAM to crawl extremely big web sites, however for smaller web sites, 8GB of RAM is first-rate.

A sixty four-bit running machine is needed, but if you’re the use of a 32-bit machine, Screaming Frog can provide an alternative model of the software program.

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Step 1: Download Screaming Frog
Here’s the way to deploy Screaming Frog in your computer.
To get began, go to the Screaming Frog SEO Spider landing page and click the blue down load button. Screaming Frog will advise the proper version of the tool on your operating system, however you can pick an alternative if you choose.

Step 2: Install Screaming Frog
Wait for Screaming Frog to down load; it’s a big record, so depending on the velocity of your laptop, it’d take some time. Go to the region in which your downloads are saved and click the .Exe report.

If your laptop asks if you’re glad for Screaming Frog to make modifications to your tool, click Yes.

Follow the set up commands and click Install while you’re geared up.

Click Finish to complete the Installation, and Screaming Frog might be equipped to release!

If you’ve left the Launch Screaming Frog search engine optimization Spider field checked, it will load right now, in any other case find the shortcut to your laptop and click it to get started.

Step three (Optional): Change Your Storage Settings
If you’re the usage of the paid-for model and very own a strong-nation drive, Screaming Frog recommends converting your storage settings. This method your crawl statistics is stored immediately on your power in place of in memory, providing you with extra flexibility.

To try this, access Screaming Frog, go to File > Settings > Storage Mode and choose Database Storage Mode.

Conduct a Website Audit
The aspect I love maximum about Screaming Frog for search engine optimization is that you can soar in right away and get began. Here’s the way to behavior your first internet site audit.

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Input Your URL
Open Screaming Frog: at the pinnacle of the device, you’ll see a gray container that says Enter URL to Spider. Type your internet site URL here.

If you click on the down arrow, you can view all of the URLs you’ve formerly audited.

The default alternative is All Subdomains, which crawls your entire website online. You can alternate this to move slowly one precise URL or just the subdomain/subfolder you’ve entered.

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When you’re ready to head, click the green Start Button.

Start the Crawl
Screaming Frog will robotically begin to spider your chosen web page in actual-time, which means URLs appear as quickly as Screaming Frog crawls them. This may be exquisite for getting a tough concept of the country of your technical search engine marketing, even though the experiment is still walking.

If you’re on the loose version of Screaming Frog, you may see a dialog box if you hit the restriction of 500 URLs. We’ll speak approximately the variations among the free and paid-for versions of Screaming Frog later in this put up.

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The amount of time an audit takes relies upon on how many URLs you need to check and how fast your laptop is. A crawl of a massive website with heaps of pages commonly takes a few hours.

Screaming Frog suggests a progress bar so you can see how a ways you are thru the audit, and you can press pause to briefly stop the test at any time.

Read Your Report
When the development bar hits one hundred percent, your records is ready to study, and your reports are prepared to access.

Go to Reports and choose the file you want to down load. This offers you with lots of treasured records you could use to optimize your web site.

There are also lots of different categories of records available to view in Screaming Frog, which can experience overwhelming if you’re new to it.

My recommendation is to click on on the whole thing—you may’t “break” your website in Screaming Frog, so simply move for it! I’ll speak you via a few particular reports you could get entry to in Screaming Frog search engine optimization Spider quickly.

Each tab helps you to search for particular records or practice a filter out. For example, the Internal URL document enables you to filter out by using unique report type.

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You also can view a list of results or access a tree table view, which lets you see the hierarchy of the URLs in your web page.

Each tab also summarizes the essential findings and provides a information chart, that’s tremendous for reports or displays.

Finally, you could export your information as a CSV, Excel Spreadsheet, or Google Sheet. Click Export on the document you want to store and entire the details.

If you’re the use of the paid model of Screaming Frog, you may keep your crawl, which means you could reopen it and revisit it later. Just visit File > Save or File > Save As.

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Use Screaming Frog to Identify and Resolve SEO Issues
We’ve checked out a way to use Screaming Frog to audit your site; now permit’s get into what you need to do with all that data. In this segment, I’ll display you the way to use Screaming Frog to investigate your website, enhance your SEO, and even carry out key-word research.

Fix Technical SEO Issues
Screaming Frog let you repair a extensive range of technical search engine marketing issues for your website. Once you’ve run a crawl, it’s only a case of knowing wherein to find the right records.

Here are a few thoughts to get you commenced.

Find Broken Links
Broken hyperlinks don’t simply frustrate your traffic but can negatively have an effect on your SEO. Here’s how to find all of them using Screaming Frog SEO.

Run a crawl and visit the Response Codes tab. Next, filter out for Client Error (4XX) outcomes. This will carry up a listing of all 404 and 403 mistakes on your web site.

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Click on an blunders and click on at the Inlinks tab at the lowest of Screaming Frog. This will tell you the web page wherein the broken link became located, which means you could cross in and eliminate or replace it.

You also can export a broken hyperlink file in your website via going to Bulk Export > Response Codes > Client Error (4XX) Inlinks.

Review Page Titles and Meta Descriptions
You can use Screaming Frog to study your web page titles and meta descriptions, meaning you could ensure a completely unique, relevant, and certain seek engine presence.

Go to the Page Titles or Meta Descriptions tabs, in which you can see the relevant records for each URL in your web site.

You can filter to peer lacking, duplicate, too long, or too short titles and export this information into a spreadsheet.

Identify Missing Alt Text
Alt textual content is essential for accessibility. You can test the photographs to your website to look in the event that they have appropriate alt textual content through sorting out the Images tab.Images tab.

Select a document and get admission to the Inlinks tab at the bottom of Screaming Frog to peer in which the image is and what the alt text is

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If you want to locate images with lacking alt textual content, pick out the Missing Alt Text clear out at the top of the file.

Analyze Backlinks
One of Screaming Frog’s strengths is that you can use it to check your internal and external links.

Both forms of hyperlinks are essential for strong performance in serps. Linking to outside web sites boosts your credibility and presents additional fee to visitors.

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Solid internal linking:

Keeps site visitors on your site for longer
Makes it less complicated for search engines like google and yahoo to index your complete site
Passes “hyperlink juice,” supporting serps determine which pages to prioritize inside the consequences
You can use Screaming Frog to get records about all your internal and external backlinks.

Start by way of going to the Internal Links file and filter it to best show HTML files (i.E. Pages). Click on the URL (or URLs) of your preference.

Next, scroll all the way down to the tabs at the bottom of the web page. Choose Inlinks to look the alternative pages for your website that hyperlink to that URL and Outlinks to peer what internal hyperlinks feature on that URL. You also can see which anchor textual content is in use and whether the hyperlink is follow or nofollow.

When you have got the statistics you need, you may export it right into a spreadsheet for in addition review.

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You can repeat the technique the use of the External tab and Inlinks file to peer which external hyperlinks you promote to your pages.

Conduct Keyword Research and Analysis
Screaming Frog isn’t just useful for technical SEO. You can use it as part of your key-word research strategy too.

Competitive Analysis
You can use Screaming Frog to check out your competition’ web sites as well as your very own.

Run a crawl of their website, then visit the Page Titles, Meta Descriptions, H1, and H2 tabs to peer what phrases and phrases they use.

Custom Extraction
Another approach is to apply the custom extraction characteristic in Screaming Frog to scrape web pages for extra statistics. For instance, Screaming Frog doesn’t collect information approximately H3 tags by way of default, but you may use custom extraction to do this.

As an aside, you could use the custom extraction function to perceive a extensive range of data about your website online. You can use it to find which cookies are in use, which social media sharing buttons are on every web page, and if your files incorporate any broken links.

Duplicate Content
You can use Screaming Frog to discover precise and almost precise content material in your website online.

While duplicate content material won’t tank your SEO scores, it could confuse the search engines. Go to the Content tab and filter for Exact Duplicates and Near Duplicates.

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Once you’ve recognized reproduction content material, you may overview these pages and upload new key phrases to offer unique content on your site visitors.

Advanced Features to Explore
Screaming Frog is a effective device which can let you know a lot about your website. Consider those additional functions to decorate your enjoy even in addition.

You can time table audits, both as a one-off or at selected durations. Just go to File > Scheduling, and your move slowly will run within the background.
You can combine gear into Screaming Frog to offer additional capability. For example, you may use PageSpeed Insights to get statistics approximately web page load pace and overall performance, or Google Analytics to add statistics about page visits or bounce fees to your selected information. Go to Configuration > API Access to do that.
You can crawl JavaScript factors for your internet site, as an instance, AJAX content material. This means you could see which pages rely upon JavaScript and if any factors are blocked. Go to the JavaScript tab to access this statistics.
You can compare websites in Screaming Frog—this is right in case you’ve made technical modifications for your internet site and need to see the upgrades. Go to File > Crawls and pick the reports you need to check.
You can generate an XML sitemap and robots.Txt record to upload to your website. Go to Sitemaps > XML Sitemap or Configuration > robots.Txt and observe the instructionsConfiguration > robots.Txt and comply with the instructions
You can create cool visualizations that allow you to easily see the connection among the pages and documents on your site. Go to the Visualizations menu, pick out your visualization, and tweak it on your requirements

For example, the most latest update lets in paid users to clear out Google Analytics monitoring parameters, perfect if you need to change or cast off the tracking code connected on your URLs.

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Screaming Frog Pricing
The Screaming Frog search engine optimization platform is free to use. You can move slowly as much as 500 URLs without spending a dime and feature access to capability and reporting consisting of:

Broken links and redirects
Page titles and meta descriptions
Meta robots and directives
Hreflang attributes
Exact reproduction pages
XML sitemap era
Visualizations
It’s vital to remember the fact that any link on your internet site counts as a URL, not just pages. This approach JavaScript files, CSS files, and images all make a contribution towards your 500 URL restriction.

However, by means of buying a license, you could liberate extra functionality and reporting such as:

Unlimited crawls (dependent on allocated memory and storage)
Scheduled reporting
JavaScript rendering
AMP crawling and validation
Integration with equipment such as PageSpeed Insights, Google Search Console, and Google Analytics
Structured facts crawling and validation
Near replica pages
Robots.Txt generation
Free technical assist
Each license expenses $259 a year.

These licenses are in keeping with man or woman in preference to tool, so that you can pay as soon as and use Screaming Frog on special devices. You also can pay for added licenses, with a charge wreck if you purchase more than 5 at a time.

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To follow a license in your version of Screaming Frog, purchase on line, in which you get a username and license key. Go to Screaming Frog and select License > Enter License Key from the menu. Enter your information whilst requested, restart Screaming Frog, and you’re accurate to head!

Screaming Frog Alternatives

Screaming Frog is one of the satisfactory gear for wearing out a technical search engine optimization audit, but I appreciate that it’s now not for all of us.

The getting to know curve may be steep in case you’re new to technical search engine marketing, and if you have a sluggish computer, it is able to take time to crawl big websites.

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These are a number of my favourite Screaming Frog alternatives if you want to explore other options:

Sitebulb. While Sitebulb is greater high-priced than Screaming Frog, it’s far each computer and cloud-based. It also gives a “Hints” system which suggests how you could enhance the technical search engine marketing of your internet site in undeniable English.
Visual search engine optimization. Of all the gear on this listing, Visual SEO is the most much like Screaming Frog in phrases of appears and pricing. The vital difference is that Visual SEO is simpler to apply at the same time as Screaming Frog gives more advanced functionality.
Spotibo. An on line search engine optimization crawler, Spotibo helps you to examine 500 URLs without spending a dime, presenting jargon-unfastened suggestions for enhancing your search engine optimization. It’s lots extra fundamental than Screaming Frog however ideal in case you want to perform a brief spot test.
Scrutiny. Scrutiny is a laptop-based crawler for Mac, which goes further to Screaming Frog. It also offers internet accessibility checking out.
Oncrawl. Oncrawl comes with an clean-to-understand dashboard that suggests you technical SEO troubles at a glance.
Lumar. Lumar is a fast and complete platform that gives guidelines about how you could improve your technical SEO and accessibility, in addition to benchmark towards your enterprise. The disadvantage of Lumar is that it’s for agency agencies simplest, without a free trial or pricing plans for smaller organizations.
Botify. Another organisation platform, Botify is greater technical than Lumar and targeted at search engine marketing specialists. Its Intelligence function prioritizes which technical search engine marketing moves you ought to adopt first.
Xenu’s Link Sleuth. While Link Sleuth simplest identifies broken links, it’s simple to apply, free, and really thorough—it even checks to look if any e mail addresses are nonetheless active.
FAQs
What is Screaming Frog and the way does it work?
Screaming Frog is a SEO spider that collects statistics about a website, whether yours or a competitor’s. It works by crawling a website and extracting facts from the HTML code of every web page. It then shows this statistics in an clean-to-apprehend layout.

What are the benefits of the use of Screaming Frog for search engine marketing?
Screaming Frog can pick out technical troubles for your website online, along with broken links, lacking alt textual content, and duplicate content material.
Resolving technical issues improves the consumer experience to your internet site and boosts website online velocity, each of which are beneficial on your seek engine ranking.

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Are there any Screaming Frog alternatives?
If you’re searching out a Screaming Frog opportunity, there are numerous spiders and auditing tools on the market. These include Sitebulb, Lumar, Scrutiny, Visual SEO Studio, Botify, Spotibo, Xenu’s Link Sleuth, and Oncrawl.

How often ought to I use Screaming Frog to monitor my website’s search engine marketing performance?
I suggest the use of Screaming Frog to behavior a technical audit of your website as a minimum once a year, greater often when you have a massive or complex internet site.
It’s also essential to run Screaming Frog search engine marketing spider when you make considerable changes on your website online, along with converting your URL structure.

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Conclusion
Technical search engine marketing can feel like a lot, especially in case you’re a marketer who doesn’t have internet improvement revel in.

However, get it right, and also you’re one step towards enhancing your seek engine presence.

Google has gone on report to mention that web page velocity and mobile responsiveness make a contribution to search engine optimization, so the more you could optimize your website, the better!

Screaming Frog is a notable device to have on your MarTech stack. It’s rapid, unfastened, and offers precious insights you could use to make your website better.

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I’d clearly suggest downloading it and giving it a attempt. If you want a bit extra support knowledge Screaming Frog and how to use search engine marketing in your benefit, my technical search engine marketing employer is here to assist.

Are you partial to the use of Screaming Frog for search engine marketing? Which technical SEO platform is your favourite?

 

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