A content audit is a systematically executed review of all the content on your website so that it can be reworked where necessary and can be improved where possible. How recently did you take a moment to evaluate your content’s effectiveness carefully?
An audit of content can be a time-consuming process, but it will be well worth the effort when done in a proper manner. Your current, popular topics might not be so compelling a few months from now. As a result, your content strategy must be periodically adjusted based on the audit findings. By conducting a content audit a couple of times a year, you can determine whether your content marketing efforts yield results and how they can be further enhanced to get even higher ROI.
In this section of blog we talk about the importance of content and the important factors to keep in mind before doing one.
Importance of Content Audit
There are parts of your site that attract the most visitors and generate the most conversions.
- Avoid content that makes your visitors bounce.
- There are opportunities to optimise existing content for search engines.
- Some pages could be merged to eliminate overlap.
- Content that does not pertain to the site could be removed.
- The best-performing content could serve as a benchmark.
- Keep search engines out of posts and pages on your site.
- Fix issues with accessibility.
- Find new ways to fill in content gaps.
Important factors to consider for doing Content Audit for a Website
1. For Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Usability
Do your post titles seem too long? Do they catch the reader’s attention? How do you get the reader to click through the search results? Have they incorporated the target keywords? A good title tag should have about 50-60 characters, and at the most, no more than 70 characters for search engines like Google; otherwise, it won’t display properly.
- Meta Descriptions
A Meta description is a short sentence or two that summarises the content under the title in search results. As you might expect, it affects the number of clicks through your content. Therefore, ensure the Meta descriptions for all your posts are keyword-optimised in your CMS. Otherwise, search engines will select a part of the post and display it as the meta description without your knowledge.
Keywords are the words or phrases that describe what the content is about in a nutshell. So it’s not surprising that they contribute to better search engine rankings. By using these keywords, search engine crawlers can better understand your content. Therefore, make sure that your content contains keywords throughout – in the title, Meta description, URLs, subheadings, and in the body paragraphs.
An effective link structure is essential for every piece of content. If, for example, your site links out to spammy or low-quality sites, you will hurt your business reputation and your SEO. To do so, be sure to do the following:
- Internal links
Ensure that all your content is strategically linked to one another to improve your search ranking.
- Outbound links
Make sure you are linking to quality websites.
- Broken links
Ensure that none of the links on your website point to broken pages (404 “not found” errors). If they do, remove them or redirect them to another page. Each page should be checked for broken links and internal links. Check the quality of all outgoing links as well.
Are there images to break up huge blocks of text? Do the images appear to be of high quality? In case they are not viewed with a screen reader or load without an alt text, is one available? Ensure that the answers to these questions are a resounding “yes” for every page on your website.
According to studies, longer posts tend to rank higher in search engine results. Therefore, a post with a word count over 2000 will improve your SEO. Additionally, it would make your audience happier since it would answer most, if not all, of their questions. Hence, you should always review the quality of your content and see if additional information can be added to articles.
It is useless to write long-form content if your reader cannot understand it. Likewise, you won’t be able to implement it effectively if the content is too technical, tedious, or difficult to skim. Therefore, ensure your content meets high standards. Ensure they are enjoyable to read, easy to scan and pass the Flesch-Kincaid readability test.
Content pieces that are no longer relevant should be separated from evergreen ones. Then, identify which of those should be updated as needed for continued relevance. If they are out-of-date, they may need to be deleted. Finding evergreen content can help you with your marketing efforts, as you can keep promoting it for years to come.
6. Backlinks Analysis
Links pointing to your site from other websites keep changing over time. So be sure that only credible websites link to your site, not spammy ones. It’s also important to watch whether the number of good backlinks increases or decreases since backlinks affect your search engine rankings.
7. Duplicate Content
Duplicate content is one of the most common SEO problems plaguing websites. When you have duplicate content, search engines won’t know which of your pages should show up in SERPs, and those pages can even begin to compete with each other. Furthermore, creating duplicate content would be a waste of time and energy. So, go through your content repository and remove duplicate content.
8. Factual Accuracy
Does all your content contain accurate information? Statistics are often unreliable, so those you cite may be unreliable. Therefore, ensure that your articles are factually accurate, as false information can harm readership.
Calls-to-action can be a great way to increase conversions within and after your posts. First, examine all of your content to determine if there is space to include relevant call-to-action buttons.
Does your content make it easier for people with disabilities to access it? your content to ensure that it follows a logical structure. Ensure all form fields have clear labels and that the anchor texts are descriptive enough. Improve accessibility results in better usability and search rankings.
Having multiple authors contribute to the content creation on your site requires that you include the correct author’s byline in every article. Additionally, ensure that your author bios are up to date.
12. Tracking Performance and Business Goals
An important factor for auditing your content is to measure and track the performance of your existing content marketing initiatives. Furthermore, it must be ensured that this is aligned with the business goals of the organisation. The following are the list of the factors to consider for tracking the performance of your content.
A significant indicator of your content’s effectiveness is the amount of traffic it can generate. Creating more content doesn’t make sense if it doesn’t generate worthwhile traffic.
Perhaps there is a problem with:
Strategic content planning
- Distribution of content
- Format of the content
- The quality of the content
By examining traffic metrics regularly in your audit, you’ll determine if your content marketing efforts are working.
14. Bounce Rate
Do people leave your website right after reading your content page without exploring other parts? Your content is usually just a gateway to bring users from a search to your site, entertain or inform them, and then make them want to stay and browse the rest of your site. However, if the bounce rate is high, people who view your content return to the search engine because they probably did not find what they were looking for. Therefore, you need to determine where your content fails to keep visitors on your site and encourage them to explore what your website offers.
15. New vs. Returning Visitors
Does one of your articles attract a large number of new visitors? Are your blog posts so well-written that your audience bookmarks them? Regular visitors are a great sign. It would be best if you gave such content your full attention. Yet, content that engages new audiences is also worthy of attention. Therefore, it is vital to review the types of visitors in your audit so you can build an effective content strategy.
16. Traffic Sources
By determining your traffic sources, you can discover the origins of your traffic. For example, if most of your content’s traffic comes from search results on Google, your SEO strategy is working. Alternatively, if your social media handles are not generating traffic, you might consider upping your social media marketing.
17. Average Time on Page
Having a blog post of more than 3,000 words and an average time spent on thirty seconds suggests something needs to be fixed. If the content is the right fit for your audience, you can see how long they spend on each piece of content. It shows you which topics are more likely to gain significant traction than others, which aids in framing your future efforts.
Likes, comments, social shares, and mentions indicate that you produce highly successful content. Finding out what kind of blog post gets the most engagement will help you create more of it and repeat the success.
19. Contribution to Conversions
All marketing campaigns are meant to generate more sales at the end of the day—nothing more, nothing less. Google Analytics’ multi-channel attribution models can determine which content contributes most to conversions. Therefore, your existing content strategy should focus more on the ones that bring in the bacon.
As soon as the audit is over, your inferences can now be used to improve your existing content strategy. Understanding your past content success and failure will allow you to develop content marketing strategies to reach greater heights. This will enable you to create content that appeals to your target audience, improve organic visibility, and improve conversion rates. To improve your least-performing posts, you can compare them with your competitors’ most compelling content. It would be best if you also took note of topics and types of content that are doing well in the future to create more of those.