If you’ve got a big website, lots of active social media profiles and a warehouse full of offline collateral this bit can seem like a daunting task. But assessing what you’ve already got is a crucial part of building an efficient and effective content strategy.
As well as identifying the priorities for fixing existing content, a content audit will help you find opportunities to repurpose old content and extract more value from it. Maybe you have a library of videos buried away on a hard-to-reach page of your website, or trade show handouts that contain all the information you need for some new landing pages. Your content audit will dig out these little gems.
If auditing everything you have is unrealistic then set some priorities. You can do that by referring back to your user profiles. What are the pages you need to convert those users? Which social media sites do you need to fix first? What are the key questions your existing content fails to answer?
WHAT SHOULD MY CONTENT AUDIT ACHIEVE?
Content Audits ensure that the resource you have available for your content marketing is put to the best possible use. For example, your Content Audit might turn up some landing pages that just need a quick tune up rather than a complete rewrite. Or maybe the CEO wrote a great piece on the intranet that could generate leads if tweaked for LinkedIn.
Without the Content Audit you might spend time and money creating new content when you already have something you could use. Even if you’ve been doing some content marketing for a little while there are likely to be quick wins that a Content Audit can uncover.
Once you’ve done your audit you’ll feel confident that you’re making the best use of what you’ve got. And that your content creation efforts can focus on meeting the needs of your User Personas.
If your resources are limited or your Content Audit will be a big undertaking you’ll need some ideas to save you time. Here are our tips:
- Prioritise your landing pages: after the homepage, your landing pages are the most important pages on your website. If your Content Audit achieves one thing it should be identifying the gaps in your landing pages;
- Run some site operator searches: a Google search for “site:yourdomain.com.au” will return all the pages from your site that Google has indexed. If your site uses a breadcrumb URL structure (and it really should) you’ll be able to use these searches to find all the pages in each sub-folder (“site:yourdomain.com.au/services” or “site:yourdomain.com.au/blog/how-to”, for example);
- Reuse videos and graphics: if you’re looking for ways to generate new content quickly then start by looking at any videos or graphics you’ve got to hand. Unlike written content, videos and graphics can be reused multiple times;
- Find your most popular content: if you’ve got a lot of content to get through you might want to start by working out which topics or types of content have worked in the past, and focus on that. You can get this data from Google Analytics, your social media pages or a third party tool, such as BuzzSumo;
- Find your least popular content: no matter how good your content creation team is some of your content will have failed to hit the mark. Pages that don’t cut it in search or have horrible bounce rates can go to the top of the list for rewrites;
- Rate your content (and be honest): come up with a simple scale like a traffic light system to assess the suitability of each piece of content. This will help you set priorities when you start creating new content;
- Check your on-page SEO: you’ll find some quick wins here. Your landing pages might not be perfect but simple improvements such as fixing up the metadata can be done much sooner than rewriting the copy or redesigning the pages:
- Check your Conversion Rate Optimisation and UX: this is another good place for low-hanging fruit. If there’s no CTA on your blog or your sign-up form is a pain to complete make fixing that stuff a priority.