Your content marketing strategy is what attracts visitors to your website, engages them, and keeps them coming back for more. But sometimes, despite your best efforts, certain pieces of content just don’t perform as expected. Perhaps they get buried under newer content, rank poorly in search engines, or simply fail to yield the desired results.
Whatever the case may be, you don’t have to erase all that hard work and start from scratch. Instead, you can perform a content audit to determine what’s working, what’s not, and how to improve your existing content strategy.
This checklist will guide you through the process of evaluating your current content and making necessary adjustments. Let’s get started!
What is a Content Audit?
Before diving into our content audit checklist – let’s first define what a content audit is and why it’s important.
A content audit is a systematic analysis of all the content on your website, including:
- Web pages
- Landing pages
- Blog posts
- Product descriptions
A content audit is often directly linked to SEO (search engine optimization) efforts, as it can be used to identify optimization opportunities and improve search engine rankings. It also helps to ensure that your content is aligned with your overall business goals and objectives.
If you have not conducted a content audit before, it may seem like a daunting task. But it’s not nearly as complicated as it may appear. With the right approach and tools, you can conduct a thorough website content audit and make informed decisions going forward.
Why Perform a Content Audit?
Content is like a living, breathing organism. It needs constant care and attention to remain relevant, engaging, and effective.
What might have worked for your business a year ago may no longer resonate with your target audience. That’s exactly why regular content audits are essential. They will help you keep your content strategy fresh and improve your search rankings by answering the following questions:
- What content do you have?
- Is it accurate and up to date?
- How do people find your content?
- Is this content valuable?
- How is it performing?
The answers to these questions will help you maintain high-quality, relevant content on your website that resonates with your audience and drives results.
How to Conduct a Content Audit
Now, let’s go over the content audit process step by step:
Step 1: Set Your Goals
There’s no point in conducting a website content audit if you don’t have clear goals in mind. Decide what you want to achieve with the audit and how it will benefit your overall content strategy.
Some common goals for a content audit include:
- Improving search engine rankings for a specific blog post, web page, or overall website.
- Removing outdated or irrelevant content to improve the user experience.
- Identifying gaps in your content that need to be filled.
Having clear goals will help you stay focused and make the best use of your time during the content audit process.
Step 2: Gather Your Existing Content
The next step is to gather all of the content that you plan on auditing.
You can use an Excel or Google spreadsheet – or a content audit tool to make this process more organized and efficient. (If you’re planning on auditing a large amount of content, it may be worth investing in a tool specifically designed for content audits).
Once you have a content audit spreadsheet, you’ll need to categorize it.
You’ll want to track the following information in a separate spreadsheet column for each piece of content:
- Publication Date
- Word Count
- Content Goal
After gathering all of your content and organizing it in a spreadsheet, you can move on to the next step in the content audit process.
Step 3: Track Metrics and Analyze Content Audit Data
Now that you have all of your content in one place, it’s time to start tracking metrics and analyzing data. This step will help you understand how your content is performing and identify areas for improvement.
Some key metrics to track during a content audit include:
- Organic Traffic: How many people are visiting each piece of content?
- Engagement: Are people spending time on the page, scrolling through the entire piece, or leaving quickly?
- Conversions: Is your content leading to any desired actions, such as sign-ups or purchases?
- Bounce rate: Are people immediately leaving the page without engaging with your content?
Tools, such as Google Analytics, can help you gather and analyze this data. By keeping track of these metrics, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about which content is effective and where improvements can be made.
Step 4: Make Decisions and Take Action
After you’ve analyzed your data, it’s time to make decisions and take action. This is where the real work of a content audit comes into play.
Based on your analysis, you may decide to:
Update or repurpose underperforming content
- Consolidate similar pieces of content
- Remove outdated or irrelevant content
- Create new content to fill gaps
By taking action based on your audit findings, you can improve the overall quality and effectiveness of your content. Remember to track any changes made so that you can continue to monitor progress over time.
Step 5: Maintain and Review
A content audit is not a one-time task – it’s an ongoing process. It’s important to regularly review and update your content to ensure that it remains relevant in search engines and continues to meet your goals.
Most marketers recommend conducting a content audit two or more times per year. This allows you to stay on top of any changes or updates needed and ensures that your content is always meeting the needs of your target audience.
Ready to Get Started?
A content audit can go a long way in improving the overall success of your content marketing strategy. It may seem like a daunting task at first, but with the right tools and approach, it can be a valuable exercise for your business.
At Ayokay, we specialize in helping businesses create and maintain effective content strategies. From audits to content creation and optimization, we’ve got you covered.
Contact us to learn more about our services!
Jack Shepler is a Marketing and Search Engine Optimization expert. He founded Ayokay, award-winning marketing, and web design firm in Indianapolis, Indiana that has built brands, increased sales for businesses, and helped nonprofit organizations fulfill their missions since 2011. He uses his decades of experience to educate through the Ayokay blog and through public speaking. You can follow him on LinkedIn.