Your website is more than just a bunch of words and pictures on the internet. It’s the digital face of your brand. And a guide for search engines to find you.
Google shook things up with 10 algorithm updates in 2023 alone. Imagine the impact of these updates on your website’s visibility and performance.
But don’t worry – there’s a way to fix that!
It’s called a content audit.
- Websites usually last around 2 years and 7 months.
- 61% of marketers do content audits two or more times a year.
If you haven’t checked up on your content in over three years. It’s time for content audit. It’s a smart move that can make a big difference.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to do a content audit in an easy way. No complicated stuff – just simple steps to help you make your content work better for your business.
Ready to make your content better? Follow QC Digital easy guide to give your old posts a new life and boost your business!
What Is a Content Audit?
Let’s start with the most easy and simplified content audit definition. A content audit is like a review of all the stuff on your website.
The articles, pictures, videos, everything. It helps you see what’s working and what needs improvement.
Why Is Regular Content Audit Needed?
Your website’s content is more than words on a page. It’s a reflection of your brand, your message, and your values. A content audit is a regular evaluation of the existing content on your website.
- Running a small business?
- Wondering why you should bother with a regular content audit?
Well, it provides a complete view of your content’s performance. Including metrics like views, engagement, and SEO success.
Let’s break down the essential elements of a website content audit:
Goal 1: Understand Your Content Health
A seo content audit is like a checkup for your website.
- Is your content interesting to visitors?
- Does it match your brand’s style?
Perform a content audit to see how well everything is working. It helps you find and fix any issues holding your site from getting ranked.
Goal 2: The SEO Connection
Now, why is this important, especially for small businesses?
Well, think about search engines like Google. They often change how they decide which content ranks high.
In 2023, Google updated its algorithm 10 times! A content audit helps you keep up with these changes.
Key Components of Content Audit
Here’s what it typically checks:
1. Inventory of Content
- URLs Inventory: Compile a detailed list of all active URLs on your website.
- Content Categorization: Categorize content types, such as blogs, landing pages, videos, while noting titles and headings.
2. Performance Metrics
- Traffic Analysis: Check content performance through metrics like views and user engagement metrics.
- Social Sharing: Examine the frequency of content being shared on social platforms.
- Conversion Effectiveness: Assess the effectiveness of content in converting users.
3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Keyword Analysis: Scrutinize ranking keywords and their effectiveness.
- Meta Description Optimization: Ensure meta descriptions are optimized for search engines.
- Backlink Quality: Evaluate the quality and number of backlinks pointing to your content.
- Internal Linking: Analyze the internal linking structure within your content.
- Alt Text Presence: Confirm the presence of descriptive alt text for images.
4. Content Quality and Relevance
- Information Currency: Verify content for up-to-date information.
- Audience Relevance: Ensure content aligns with the target audience‘s needs.
- Depth and Consistency: Assess the depth of content on specific topics and its consistency with brand tone.
5. Content Structure and Format
- Visual Structure: Evaluate the visual appeal and structure of content.
- Usability: Ensure content is user-friendly and offers a positive experience.
- Mobile Optimization: Confirm content is optimized for mobile devices.
6. Redundancies and Gaps
- Identify Repeated Content: Highlight any redundancy across the site.
- Address Content Gaps: Identify topics or areas that require attention.
7. Potential for Repurposing
- Repurposing Content: Explore possibilities for repurposing content into different media formats.
8. Technical Aspects
- Loading Speed: Check how quickly content loads for users.
- Link Reliability: Ensure no broken links are present.
- Redirect Efficiency: Confirm the efficiency of redirect setups.
What to Check
Inventory of Content
List of all content
· Visitor count
· Time spent on the site
· Content shares
· Meta descriptions
· Proper linking
Content Quality and Relevance
· Consistent with the brand image
Content Structure and Format
· Appealing appearance
· Easy usability
Redundancies and Gaps
· Identify repeated content
· Areas needing attention
· Use content in different ways
· Check loading speed
· Fix broken links for smooth browsing
Importance of Regular Website Content Audits
Why is it essential to conduct regular content audits, especially concerning SEO?
Let’s explore key reasons:
1. Adjust to Algorithm Updates
The ever-evolving algorithms of search engines, notably Google, demand continuous attention. Algorithm updates impact how content is ranked.
In 2023 alone, Google executed 10 algorithm updates. Each reshaping the digital environment.
For instance, the Helpful Content update in 2023 shifted the algorithm’s focus to rank higher informative and user-centric content.
Regular audits help you keep up with these updates. Missed opportunities and penalties for outdated or low-quality content become risks. Making sure your content remains in sync with the latest ranking content audit criteria.
2. Keeping Content Freshness
Google values the timeliness of content. Mainly for questions requiring up-to-date information.
The “Query Deserves Freshness” (QDF) concept triggers when users seek the latest details on trending topics or regular events.
Fresh content becomes crucial for maintaining search rankings in such scenarios.
The evergreen content has its place. Certain search queries demand the latest information. A routine content audit identifies areas needing updates. Making sure your content line up with the user’s updated needs.
3. Evaluating Content Quality: The E-A-T Criteria
Google’s emphasis on quality is evident through its E-A-T criteria—Experience, Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness.
This framework determines what qualifies as “high-quality” content. Understanding the guidelines is crucial:
- Experience: Is the content derived from firsthand experience or second-hand knowledge?
- Expertise: Accuracy and in-depth subject knowledge are essential, especially for fields like health or finance.
- Authority: Credible sources, whether industry leaders or academic institutions, carry weight in content evaluation.
- Trustworthiness: Fact-checking, absence of bias, and accurate information define trustworthy content.
How Audits Help
Vital for SEO success.
Helps your website stay in Google’s good books.
So, it doesn’t slip down in search results.
Vital for user engagement.
Find old content. Update or replace it.
Keeps your site fresh.
Meet user expectations for current and relevant information.
Review Content Quality
SEO & audience satisfaction.
Content meets Google’s quality standards (E-A-T criteria)
Provide value & trust
Keep audience engaged
Basics of Content Audit
Content audit is a game-changer for your website’s performance, SEO, and overall user engagement. Before diving into the nitty-gritty, ensure you a content audit template including the following;
- List of Website Pages/URLs to Audit
- Full Content Audit Checklist
- Appropriate Content Audit Tools
Collecting URLs with Ahrefs Webmaster Tools (AWT)
To gather URLs efficiently, leverage Ahrefs Webmaster Tools. Use Site Audit, crawl your website, go to the “Bulk export” tab, and export “Internal HTML URLs, status code 200.”
Prioritize with the 80/20 Rule
For efficiency, focus on auditing the top 20% of pages with the most organic traffic or backlinks. This principle often yields 80% of the desired results.
Step-by-Step Guide to Content Audit
1. Determine The Goal(s) of Your Content Audit
Define the purpose of your content audit. Examples include identifying outdated content, boosting organic traffic, improve user engagement metrics, or improving conversion rates. Align your metrics with the audit’s goals, tracking metrics like page views, time on page, and bounce rate.
2. Identify and Organize Content for Audit
Collect all content for the audit, considering factors like relevance and performance metrics. If your site has an extensive content repository. Focus on high-impact content or use relevant metrics for selection.
3. Set Up Your Content Audit Tool Stack
Use these various tools for tracking and measuring content performance:
– Track page views, bounce rate, and user engagement metrics.
– Utilize Google Analytics 4 for detailed event tracking.
Google Search Console (GSC)
– Gain insights into organic search performance.
– Link GSC with Google Analytics for comprehensive data.
– Crawl and analyse technical aspects like meta tags and redirects.
– Optimize SEO elements such as meta descriptions and title tags.
– Analyse keyword rankings, backlinks, and organic traffic.
4. Organize and Analyse the Data
Create a comprehensive spreadsheet for data organization. Include metrics like visits per page, time on page, bounce rate, SERP ranking, and keyword density. Identify patterns, such as topics that perform well or content with high bounce rates.
5. Apply Your Audit Action Plan
Check each piece of content and decide on one of the following actions:
- Remove: Eliminate underperforming or irrelevant content.
- Keep: Retain high-performing content without changes.
- Optimize or Update: Enhance underperforming content to meet SEO standards and improve engagement.
- Combine: Merge short or duplicate content pieces for coherence.
6. Enhance Content Quality
For optimized content, consider:
- Lengthening Content: Aim for an ideal length based on research.
- Visual Enhancements: Use visuals like infographics or videos.
- Improve Engagement: Ensure a compelling writing style and engaging presentation.
- Optimize Keyword Density: Balance keyword usage for SEO benefits.
- Update Information: Keep content current with the latest statistics and information.
7. Analyse Competing Websites
Explore competitors’ websites using tools like BuzzSumo. Gain insights into successful content, identify gaps, understand formats, and benchmark your performance.
Content audit demands attentiveness. The results are undeniably worth the effort.
– Improved SEO checks,
– User engagement,
– Content relevance
Qualitative Content Audit Checklist
Check presence, quality, and relevance of images. Identify outdated screenshots or inaccurate information.
Ensure images and links are functional for a positive user experience and SEO health.
Verify if the content’s tone aligns with the brand voice for consistency.
Review and update terminology to match any changes in branded terms, products, or services.
Test forms for functionality, convenience, and correct integration with CRM and automation platforms.
Moderate comments for responses, handle spam, and generate ideas for future blog posts.
Check and refresh popups, bottom rail, and side rail offers, ensuring proper placement.
Manually assess content for readability, ensuring it is compelling, easy to read, and skimmable.
Ensure content complies with the style guide, checking for spelling and grammar errors.
Evaluate information accuracy and freshness. Update statistics and include recent links if necessary.
Provide links to similar content from competitors for inspiration and benchmarking.
Ideas to Improve
Allow auditors to leave open-ended notes or ideas for improvement.
Quantitative Content Audit Checklist
Number of users entering the page from search engines.
Percentage of visitors who left without navigating to additional pages.
Count of internal links; check for broken or outdated links.
Number of backlinks; monitor for potential issues and penalties.
Count of unique sites linking to the page.
Keyword Volume/Keyword Difficulty
Relevant data for SEO strategy; consider informational data.
Page Load Speed
Assess technical SEO and content-level adjustments; use tools for efficiency.
Manual extraction from Search Console or use SEO tools; identify pages nearing the first page of Google.
Time on Page
Identify issues or discrepancies between content and user intent.
Applicable for landing page audits; assess goals set up in Google Analytics.
Necessary to understand content performance and impact on user experience.
Indicates how often the page was the last one visited in a session.
Evaluate image dimensions and file size for optimization.
Congratulations! You’ve just gained valuable insights into the power of content audits. Now, it’s time to use this knowledge to push your online presence to new heights.
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