Ultimate SEO Checklist for Your Online Business

While starting an online business in 2023 takes a matter of minutes, sustaining and scaling it is easier said than done. Many...

Written by Niel Patel · 4 min read >

While starting an online business in 2023 takes a matter of minutes, sustaining and scaling it is easier said than done. Many small online businesses find it challenging to keep up their growth and revenues, and poor traffic to their online store is a major reason. And SEO is one of the deciding factors at play.

SEO helps increase your website’s visibility on search engine result pages (SERPs) and its usability for potential customers. What matters most for your online business on a day-to-day basis is that more people find you and stick around to purchase your products and services. That is exactly what SEO helps achieve.

That said, most businesses without an expert SEO agency by their side would struggle to understand SEO concepts, tactics, and tools. This is why we have compiled this ultimate SEO checklist for online businesses like yours with best practices for various SEO elements.

Let’s look at what all you need to start acing the SEO game!

#1 Setup Google Search Console and Google Analytics for SEO

Google Search Console is a free tool for monitoring the performance of a website’s organic search. You can also use the platform to keep a tab on the keywords you rank for, check your ranking positions, find errors, and submit sitemaps.

It is equally important to stay on top of your SEO strategy with a Google Analytics account that helps you stay abreast of what’s working and what isn’t. It is a good idea to sign up for an SEO tool like Agency Dashboard, that integrates with Google Analytics for the best outcomes.

#2 Install and Configure an SEO Plugin for Your Website

You will need an SEO plugin to optimize elements like meta tags, sitemaps, etc. in case you are using WordPress. Some great options include Yoast SEO, Rank Math, and All in One SEO Pack. The kind of plugins you use (and whether you need them at all) depends on the platform you use (Shopify doesn’t require any). Keep in mind that the plugin should be easy to use and intuitive, and must offer frequent updates for the best performance.

#3 Create and Submit an XML Sitemap

Search engines can quickly crawl and index your pages if you provide them with a sitemap that directs them to the key pages on your website. A site map also improves weak linking, helps with navigation, and promotes visibility. Once your sitemap is ready, submit it to Bing Webmaster Tools and Google Search Console.

#4 Curate a Content Marketing Strategy

Content is a significant ranking factor for search engines. Your page will be indexed more frequently the more you update it with new information. High-value content that provides in-depth responses to consumer inquiries is also given priority by Google.

#5 Make Sure Search Engines Can Index Your Website

All the pages on your website must be accessible for search engines to index them. Use the URL Inspection Tool in Google Search Console, to verify this.

#6 Create a Structure for Your Website

Design a streamlined and logical website structure to make sure that users and search engines can navigate your website without difficulty. A good practice is to interconnect every webpage and relevant sub-pages through internal links.

#7 Shift to HTTPS (If You Haven’t Already)

HTTPS is an established lightweight ranking criterion for websites. Aside from uplifting potential ranking, HTTPS will also safeguard your visitors’ data. It is time to convert to HTTPS if you already aren’t.

#8 Test Website Speed

40% of visitors tend to leave a website if it is not up and running within 3 seconds. Usability is the key factor when it comes to website speed. There are many free tools to test the speed of your website and find out the underlying issues to correct them.

#9 Ensure Mobile-Responsiveness

Test your website’s responsiveness to mobile devices by putting it through Google’s mobile-friendly test. Make some adjustments if it appears disorganized.

#10 Optimize and Compress Images

Optimized images are great for your website’s visibility when you add relevant keywords to their file name, captions, and alt tags. Images should also be compressed to reduce their file size because it speeds up page loading, which is significant to Google rankings.

#11 Fix Broken Web Pages

Your website’s user experience can be negatively impacted, and its flow disrupted due to broken links. Make sure you audit all internal pages for broken links. Reinstate the pages that were deleted accidentally, and redirect, remove, or update internal links for others.

#12 Spend Time on Keyword Research

Not just your content but also your technical SEO will be impacted by the keywords you select for your website, so it’s best to spend time researching them. You may start with Google Search, competitor websites, or Google Keyword Planner to find related keywords by typing in different versions of your product names. Follow this up by looking at each keyword’s monthly search volume on Google Keyword Planner to whittle down your keyword range to the most relevant, high-traffic, medium-to-high competition ones.

#13 Take Care of On-Page SEO

With on-page SEO, you want to optimize your website to increase its searchability for specific keywords narrowed down in the earlier step. Simply use the following checklist to make sure you have populated your webpage with the chosen keywords:

  • Webpage URL
  • Page title, headings, and sub-headings
  • Meta descriptions
  • Image alt tags, file names, and captions
  • Text body
  • Product descriptions

Also, remember that the end reader of your webpage is not the search engine but real people and potential clients. Therefore, stuffing the page with keywords while making it less useful or difficult to read is not going to do you any good. Try to take a balanced approach when optimizing on-page SEO while ensuring readability, quality, and tactical marketing.

#14 Start Link-Building

Search engines often use internal links as a map, pinpointing how and where you lead your website and visitors. A well-thought-out internal link structure that makes it easier for users to navigate to intended destinations on your site is a great way to improve website SEO.

Additionally, try to obtain links from top-notch websites with content relevant to your target market and products to improve your website’s authority. One of the best ways to do so is to produce high-quality content that other websites may want to share with their viewers. You may also provide content to websites in exchange for backlinks or assemble a network of influences to produce backlinks and social proof for your online store.


We don’t need to elaborate on the fierce competition among online businesses across niches to outrank each other on the web. After all, there are just 10 spots on Google’s first page. What you need in such a situation is a time-tested, tactful SEO approach to stand out and ahead.

Building a solid, effective SEO strategy is not as complicated once you have a structured checklist like this by your side. By checking off the various steps enlisted above and repeating them as and when required, you can make sure you are moving in the right direction.

You must also remember that it is not a quick process, nor can outcomes be expected overnight. Great content, strategic marketing, and link-building can accelerate the process. Alternatively, you can hire an experienced SEO agency to help optimize your website in a streamlined manner for faster outcomes.

Leave a Reply