Last night I sat in a slightly over crowded room in downtown Raleigh while Ashley Berman Hale held court at this month’s Raleigh SEO Meetup.
I’m not sure people are aware of the value of the Raleigh SEO meetup so I want to take a minute to put it into perspective. When I started at my current job, my boss was on the verge of signing a contract with an SEO firm in Boston who was going to perform an audit of our site for $60,000.
No doubt their audit would have been in a cool binder with lots of white-labeled charts and graphs, but at it’s core, it would have contained the items that Ashley spent just under 90 minutes last night outlining for the 65 people who attended. Having the knowledge of how to comb through your site and find it’s problems means you don’t have to pay $60,000 for someone else to do it for you.
If you missed the awesomeness last night then you missed one of the best SEO meetups of the year. But I have good news. Even the beautiful and talented Ashley Berman Hale couldn’t force feed all of the information in one session, so next month is part II. If you’re already a member of the meetup group, you can go grab the handout from last night and marvel at a document with over 40 links where you can test almost every aspect of your site.
The most important thing that I took away from last night was a quote from Einstein that Ashley mentioned early on, “Computers are incredibly fast, accurate, and stupid. Human beings are incredibly slow, inaccurate, and brilliant. Together they are powerful beyond imagination.” A website audit requires real brain work. There are tools available for gathering data, but it’s what you do from there that matters.
Now go make your site better before next month, you don’t want to get called out as the site with problems right? Better is you are called out as the best newspaper in Garner with only 1 css warning!