A due diligence is usually performed for large investments. Here, the analysis mainly includes details on finances, economic situation, and legal circumstances. Today, it is essential for many business models to be visible in the digital environment and to generate customers. Search engines remain one of the first points of reference when looking for products, services, or anything similar.
In SEO due diligence, the SEO maturity level of a website is compared to the most important competitors to determine its optimization strength in various areas and how it compares to its competitors' performance.
The primary objective is to assess how the current Search Engine Optimization (SE-Optimization) status compares to competitors. Additionally, the feasibility and scalability of the existing approach will be evaluated in order to generate greater performance growth in the future. Specifically, the following questions will be answered:
What has online growth looked like for the website so far?
Is the current SEO strategy sustainable and scalable?
How is the website performing against competitors?
What external factors are influencing the success of the website?
What growth potentials are emerging?
All of this information should be used to determine the value of the site in question in order to define the investment amount in the event of a purchase or sale.
In the analysis, the most relevant SEO criteria and KPIs - divided into five areas - are considered. Subsequently, the maturity level is determined from this:
The first step is to analyze past performance and compare it with defined competitors.
Traffic sources (channel comparison)
Visibility in the focus country
Number of ranking keywords in the top 10 & top 100
Organic traffic value
Ratio between brand & non-brand keywords
Comparison with up to three competitors
The second area is about strategy. Here, previous measures and priorities are evaluated.
What has already been implemented?
How were resources used?
Were black hat tactics in use?
Are there any current penalties?
The third section focuses on the technical & content optimization regarding SEO criteria:
Is all essential content crawlable & indexable for search engines?
How are the page structure and internal linking set up?
Is there duplicate or thin content?
Are Title & Meta Descriptions optimized?
Pagespeed & Core Web Vitals
The last part of the analysis deals with the offpage profile of the page compared to the competition. Mainly considered are:
Number and quality of backlinks
Possible detox measures
The DM^3 (Digital Maturity) Model is utilized to assess the SEO maturity level by comparing the values from the four preceding steps with up to three specified competitors. The outcome is then illustrated in a concise executive summary.