Content audits are a fundamental part of any SEO and content marketing strategy.
They help you figure out what content you’ve got in the bag already (it’s always more than you think).
It helps you figure out what topics you’ve covered a lot in the past – and how successful it’s been.
And it can help identify gaps in your content that you need to fill.
It also saves you a load of time and effort creating a tonne of new content from scratch, only to find you already had a version of it kicking around on your website.
How to do a content audit
Content audits are simple to do, you just need to be organised and have a system to file the content you find.
First figure out where all your content is.
This could be:
- Blogs on your website
- Guides and eBooks
- Videos you’ve published (on your website and other places like YouTube)
- Social media posts
- Guest blogs you’ve submitted to other websites
- Even hardcopy sales material like brochures
Find all of it.
Next, you’ll want to create some kind of table where you can record the type, topic and key info about your content.
An excel document or something on Google sheets is enough.
You’ll need to mark out a few columns for your information:
- Content type (blog, eBook, Pillar Page etc)
- Content topic (Ecommerce SEO, content marketing, PPC etc)
- Primary keyword (Inbound marketing, PPC for small businesses etc)
- Secondary keyword
- Meta Description
- Page title
- Alt image text
- Total visits
- Date first published
- Date edited (if applicable)
- Calls to Action used
Then go through all the content you’ve found, and enter it into your content audit document.
Now you have everything in one place, you can start to analyse your existing content to see what you’ve got.
How to use your content audit
The first thing you can figure out is how much content, and what type of content you have around a particular key topic you want to focus on.
For instance, if you’re an accounting software firm, you might want your next content marketing campaign to focus on Accounts Payable automation software.
So use the content topic heading in your document, and sort your results by that key topic.
You might find you don’t have a lot of content on the topic, in which case you can start to plan some new content.
You might find you have an eBook on the topic, but no surrounding content.
This means you need to focus on some blogs or social posts or videos so you can increase your authority on the topic, and include some CTAs to your downloadable content.
You might have a tonne of SEO blogs which are pulling in decent traffic, but no downloadable lead generation content to get contact information that you can use in an email nurture campaign.
A key thing to look at, is page visits and dates that content was first published.
If you have a lot of older content that performed well in the past, it might be more beneficial to focus on updating that content with new information – rather than creating stuff from scratch.
Or you might have a number of blogs on similar topics that you can combine into a single, long form piece of content.
This is one of the biggest problems with creating a lot of content over the years.
You create content on similar topics and end up cannabalising your own search results in the process.
Do a content audit on your competitors
If you wanted to take your content audit to the next stage, you could also do one on your competitors content.
This will be time consuming.
But my understanding the content they are producing, you can understand how that compares to you, and you could uncover some key areas they aren’t covering that you could jump into.
This could be particularly useful if you have a competitor ranking highly for a very competitive search term that you don’t have the search authority to challenge for yet.
You can understand the content they have which is helping them rank highly, and put a plan in place to create better content on the same topics so you’ll eventually overtake them.
SEO tools like ahrefs are really useful for this.
Content audits are still a useful tool
Any SEO and content marketing strategy has to start with planning.
From your SEO audit to your competitor research.
And your content audit should be a central focus of that process.
It is only by understanding where you stand currently with your content creation that you can plan properly to create the content you need to match your goals.
Whether that’s to improve your ranking in search, or generate more leads.
Want to get a free consultation on your digital marketing from a team of experts?
Get in touch with us today and let’s see how we can help.