For digital marketers, driving traffic towards a website through high ranking, original content is one of the foremost ways to encourage clicks to primary landing pages and improve website authority. Content audits are an invaluable tool to help understand not only which types of content perform the best, but also how you can improve the ranking of already existing content.
What is a Content Audit?
A content audit uses information from both Google Analytics and Search Console to establish two key points. Firstly, Google Analytics tells us how well your content is performing in terms of pageviews over a period of time. What you are looking for here is content that has previously performed well but has recently dropped in terms of pageviews. What this tells us is that the page has previously been ranking well in search engines.
Use Google Search Console to Find out Search Terms
Secondly, we use Google Search Console to determine which search terms people have used to click through onto the page. The important thing about this is finding out how relevant both Google and your potential audience see your page. Once you have all of this information, you can go about optimising your existing content and get it back up in the rankings.
Why are Content Audits Important?
Content audits provide a valuable insight into the effectiveness of your existing content creation strategy. They can also help you focus your efforts on pages that are already ranking well and further build on page authority, rather than creating more and more new pages. Furthermore, the purpose of SEO is to show to Google that your website and landing pages are relevant. By reviewing pages and updating content, you are showing Google that your page is current and will provide people with the information they need.
Lastly, as the internet grows, it is becoming more challenging to draw peoples’ attention and have them listen to what you’ve got to say. Optimising content in line with current trends and standards can prove highly beneficial when it comes to engaging readers and turning pageviews into conversions. As Google analyses both the time on page and bounce rate, you want to be encouraging them not only to stay on the page but to click on links that take them further through the website.
How to do a Content Audit
Step 1, Google Analytics – to start, you must use Google Analytics to determine which pages are worth looking into. Use a custom URL search to find the full list of content pages, for example, ‘blog’. This will show you the pages with the highest number of views.
Change the date range to analyse the pages performance over the last quarter or half year. Be aware of seasonal fluctuations; as an example, buyers’ guides are likely to have increased traffic over the Christmas period.
Step 2, Google Search Console – once you have found your highest-ranking pages, you can use Search Console to find out which search terms people have used to land on the particular page. It’s these search terms you can use to optimise the content, this may involve updating headings, keyword links or copy to include these search terms.
Step 3, Optimise content – when looking to optimise content, you want to consider the readability of the page and the copy’s relevance to your most commonly ranked-for search terms. A crucial element is to ensure the page reads well on a mobile device. Take a moment to consider how the page looks to someone who has just landed on it. Is it clear what the page is about? Are there big off-putting blocks of text? By making changes to how the text is laid out, you can engage readers and encourage them to stay on the page. These changes can include:
· Adding images
· Updating headings and adding subheadings
· Splitting the text into more paragraphs
· Adding bold and italics to the text
· Including a table of contents at the beginning of the text
Next, take into consideration the search terms. Does the keyword link need updating to include a stronger term? Are there parts of the text you can update or add in some terms? You may also look at the pages that rank higher than yours, to see if there’s anything they’re doing that you are not.
Content audits are just one of the tools you can use to better optimise your website. At Ducard, we specialise in content creation and SEO, helping to improve the ranking position of your website. To find out more about what we do, contact us, explore our website or browse our blog, which has loads of useful information about digital marketing and social media.