Hookshot Media publishes four hugely successful websites in the video game sector. Sites include Nintendo Life, Pure Xbox and Push Square which generate more than 30m page views per month between them.
With more than a decade as one of the leading voices in all things gaming, the Hookshot team approached us to conduct an in-depth audit of each of their four sites. The aim was to ascertain whether there were any significant technical issues that may be impacting visibility and to provide recommendations for improving site architecture and content structure to drive more organic traffic to the sites.
The main challenge was the sheer size and scale of each site. With more than a decade of high-volume publication behind them, the combined page count was approaching 3.3 million URLs. This made crawling hugely problematic and analysis of the crawl data immensely challenging.
There were also some prior known issues that were causing huge volumes of irrelevant pages and this heavily clouded the data from crawling tools. It was important we didn’t get distracted by these known problems and the issues highlighted and instead focussed on exploring the data for new and valuable insights.
After speaking with our crawl tool provider SEMrush, we were able to segment crawls to separate data by site section. This helped to bypass the single crawl limits and isolate the known issues with certain sections of site, giving us a cleaner and clearer picture.
Next, it was a case of reviewing and analysing the data. Given the sheer volume of data, we aimed to identify patterns in issues, focussing on those of high priority or high volume. As the four sites are built on the same CMS, we were able to separate issues that were caused by the CMS and site structure and those that were specific to a single site.
The outcome was four highly detailed audit reports. Given the size, scale and age of the sites it was somewhat surprising just how technically sound they were. However, we were able to identify a number of key issues and provide the Hookshot team with recommendations to resolve these.
The playback session with the team allowed us to talk through root causes, suggested solutions and answer questions that arose from the findings. The Hookshot team could now be confident in the technical soundness of the site from an SEO perspective, as well as having insight into how they could better research and structure certain types of content with the aim of improving organic visibility and traffic.
It was clear from my first conversation with RKH that the team were eager to have a detailed understanding of our website structure, architecture and approach. This knowledge allowed them to dig deep into our sites and provide the analysis we were looking for. Whilst the scale of the project clearly caused some obstacles, the team managed to overcome them with ease. The results were thorough, pleasing and contained some actionable evidence of areas that could be improved on.
Anthony Dickens - Founder & CEO, Hookshot Media
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