Forensic SEO: The Basics of Dealing with Lost Search Visibility

One of the core areas of SEO services for me over the last 10+ years has been forensic SEO.

And hell, I drop that term all the time in various conversations, groups, interviews like it’s something that everyone knows about.

Apparently, not so much.

There does seem to be a little confusion out there on what it is exactly. And so today, we’re going to try and clear that up.

Oh, by the way, I am quite aware of the myriad of existing “definitions” of forensic SEO that currently litter the landscape.

Uhm, yeah. Sigh.

This is about how those I know that specialize in it, view forensic SEO. Feel free to argue with me about it all you want (I’m kinda used to it lol).

o start with I’m not even sure where the term came from, but I started using it maybe 10+ years ago.

Essentially, it’s a form of (SEO) audit that isn’t about optimizing. It’s more about dealing with a site that has lost visibility.

It could be a straight-up manual action.

It could be a dampening effect (think: / back in the day).

It could be on-site issues.

And many times, it’s a combination of things.

I like to teach folks/clients that it’s often about the “Sherlock Holmes School of SEO”:

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