Alexa Site Audit – Is It Worth It?

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A friend of mine recently suggested that I put my higher performing websites through an Alexa Site Audit to see if there are any changes I could/should make with regards to site structure, links, meta tags, SEM, SEO, and more. I looked through the site, and it does look like the report is comprehensive, but at $199 per website, it looks like it might be a bit on the expensive side if it’s used on several websites.

I am curious to know if anyone has ever purchased a Site Audit from Alexa, and if so, was the report worth the money? Similarly, was the report actionable for you?   In other words, if you aren’t really a developer/programmer/coder, could you understand the recommendations that were made and were you able to make changes to your site to leverage those recommendations? Things like broken links should be easy to fix, but recommendations about getting more inbound links from authority websites might be more difficult and aren’t easily actionable.

Whether you have experience with this report from Alexa or not, are there other companies that offer similar reports and services that can be helpful? I am sure everyone else gets those spammy emails and form submissions that say something like this:

“I’ve helped hundreds of companies increase their traffic and I’d love to show you what my service can do for you. I don’t promise the world, I’m straight forward and to the point … I deliver rankings. My rates are completely affordable and I don’t want to oversell you either, I start small and have my clients begging for more. I won’t take on your site unless I know I can deliver rankings. Reply to this e-mail if you have the slightest interest … you’ll never see rankings the same way again.”

I’d love to know what you’ve used that actually works and has been helpful to your business. From my perspective, there are a whole lot of services offered out there promising the world, but that makes it difficult for website owners to find someone/something that can actually deliver.

25 COMMENTS

  1. I’d also like to know this, so I’m subscribing to the comments.

    I have a few sites that need a good SEO makeover — and even at $199, if Alexa told me exactly what needed done, that’s a bargain (compared to hiring an SEO firm)

    Thanks
    Aron

  2. I’m not familiar with that audit, but I am very familiar with SEO. My guess is that your $199 investment ‘might’ pay for itself, but if you are serious about search marketing you need to be looking beyond the cheap and quick fix approach, which means either hiring a professional or taking the time to learn yourself.
    If you want to learn about SEO, the best money you can spend is becoming a member of http://www.seobook.com – the knowledge you gain there pays for the membership many times over.

  3. IMO, its a waste of money if you dont have a budget in place for seo in the first place for your sites…

    you can get a free general overview at websitegrader.com

    I am not a big fan of the diy seo systems as they really dont teach you how to fish, which if your serious about improving organic rankings for your sites its time to put in place…from what Ive seen with your sites they appear to be coded correctly, have the appropriate title/image tags and youve managed to sneak in quite a few wikipedia links for some of your geo sites so someone you are working with knows what they are doing, plus your geo dog walking micro sites for backlinks is also in play so you are probably ahead of 90% of your blog readers…my guess is that it just comes down to budgeting and analyzing investment vs return. I dont think your going to get much out of a $199 auto review based on where your at, but its just my opinion

  4. Elliot, Axandra’s IBP software does a nice job generating an automated SEO analysis which can be understood by a non-techie. It’s a lot of information, some useful – other not so much, but each section includes recommendations which are well explained. If you would like to see an example, I’d be happy to generate a report for one of your sites – just let me know which one.

  5. JJ mentions SEOBook.com.

    I just saw that SEOBook took their site thru the Alexa Site Audit
    and gave what seems like a thorough review.

    Towards the bottom of the page under “Is it Worth $199?”,
    some free tools that do a lot of what Alexa does are mentioned.

    The report was published on august 24, 2010 so it’s very fresh.

    Link here:
    http://www.seobook.com/alexa-site-audit-review

  6. You guys know you should make your content as unique and personal as possible is what ups your rank!

    In the mean time, here’s a fun online fee SEO appraisal tool, which shows some aspects which might be considerations: http://www.lemonwords.com

    Maybe that’s 10%, but the unique content is 90%, in my view.

  7. @Louise – I am #7 right now, was #3 on Google for 1 election term, scraping content entirely from Google News. Nothing original at all. Not trying for it – I’m a domainer.

    Do you have evidence that unique content works better please?

  8. @IM Links, thanx for the response. Look at pages of search results. Unique content wins the top slots! News is its own category and has special stutus with Google, as Google indexes news sites with duplicate content from news services, so it is exempt. We’re giving away a monster SEO technique, as news updates is considered “unique” because of its special status.

    As far as sites with competitive keywords, unique content wins, including if that unique content is news updates!

  9. @IM Links, News has the advantage of being updated from feeds. Other “unique content” has to be updated regularly by the author – such as in this blog! – to stay unique, because it often winds up getting “scraped,” so that your site could be penalized because it was copied by a site in Thailand. Not to impune the Thai people – it could be copied anyplace!

  10. @Louise – Thanks for the great answer. Now I understand why my ‘unparking’ minisites sometimes do well – I use the news scraping technique on many domains which have suffered ‘SERPs damage’ by parking – for example the one which reached #3 on Google – it was only beaten by the likes of CNN and BBC for a day or 2!

  11. I’ve registered with the Alexa Site Audit and it is one of the best tool to go on with.

    It helps for those who are very particular about Alexa Ranking and for SEO newbie webmasters.

  12. The promises that seem obscure are resume companies guaranteeing a job. They have no clue whether the job seeker can’t deliver in an interview. What is written on paper is not always translated into building a genuine character.

    The site audit is expensive. I would only pay that sum on one site that’s under performing. i found that writing custom articles using specific keywords and titles will generate traffic. I monitor the traffic using Stat Counter. You figure what people are searching for, and deliver the content.

    Paying to have one website audited is a good investment. It really depends on how much information Alexa provides.

  13. Elliot,

    I join a group at Microsoft’s Research lab (N.E.R.D) here in Boston where we meet 3-4 times a month and one of the good tips I received was to always check your web pages using the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Markup Validation Service (http://validator.w3.org/unicorn)…I’m also taking a php class with folks from the lab and the book were using suggests using the W3C service as well…Hope this helps!!

  14. I paid my $199 for Alexa’s site audit. I was disappointed – it’s a 100% robot-generated report, worth I would say around $20. I was expecting at least a small human component.

    Having said that perhaps I was expecting too much – I guess I was really looking for an imaginative, innovative brain-storming of my site with a human-generated SWOT analysis that would enable the site to rise to a whole new plateau.

    But I guess anybody who can do that is going to be earning a lot more than $199 for his/her opinion. Kind of like buying an overpriced medical checkup package, hoping it’ll include a comprehensive psycho-analyis!

  15. I found this blog searching for reviews for the Alexa audit- thanks to everyone who chimed in. I’m glad to know it’s probably not worth the $199 – but I’ve exhausted most of the free sites. Is there a decent SEO analyzer out there, that’s affordable?

  16. I’m used site audit by alexa. It was provide me very nice alexa rank and it says some important warning about your site optimization. You are right, it is so expensive. If you have big and strong project, I propose it to you.

  17. I also was wondering about this. but I ll go with not worth it. what they could possibly tell you more than other free tools? or cheaper tools. but I can change my opinion if I see evidence to the contrary.

    that being said, is this a site where everyone gets free 5 dislikes? i noticed all comments have 5 dislikes. Someone holding grudge against you? or it is just the default as in guilty until proven innocent?

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