Are you wondering what a content audit is? Perhaps, someone in your company has asked you to perform one or an agency has talked to you about one. Read on to learn more about content audits and how our mighty team at rellify performs them.
What is a content audit?
A content audit is the systematic review of web content that assesses quality and performance. It can span across all pages of a website, but more commonly focuses on the blog section. One of the main focuses of an audit is topic coverage or content gap analysis, which sets the foundation of a content strategy.
The content audit process includes analyzing pages and deciding specific actions for each page as it applies to quality standards and strategy. Specifically, this includes taking action as to what pages to keep, what to improve, what to remove and what to add. This is a very time-consuming project, and depending on the size of the website, it can take weeks or even months.
Content audits are best performed by experts in the field of search marketing who have a deep knowledge of organic search and content marketing. These experts and agencies use a variety of data sources and tools to compile their findings. They also have the expertise to help you analyze the data and make the improvements it points to.
What are the benefits of a content audit?
A content audit will help answer these types of questions:
- What should be your content strategy?
- What existing content is performing best, least and in-between?
- What topic coverage should you have?
- What topic coverage do you have?
- Where should you invest in new content?
- Where should you invest in improving content?
- Where should you remove, replace or redirect content?
A new or underdeveloped website will need content to be discovered in search engines. The focus will be about developing the right topics to get visibility.
A large and mature website may have amassed a lot of content over time. The focus will be auditing for quality, freshness, pages to remove, and new content.
Google’s algorithm responds well to high-quality content, so it’s important to maintain high quality pages with good user experience.
At rellify, we work with both new and established businesses to help them craft a content plan to improve search engine visibility, leads and revenue.
The content audit process
The content audit process varies from specialist to specialist, but the analysis framework is similar.
The content audit process requires a lot of effort to catalog every bit of content along with all pertinent information about it. This is no easy task. At bare minimum, the auditor or members of the auditing team must know what information they are looking for and where to find it. Then they need to record it consistently in a way that’s accessible and lends itself to analysis. Depending on the size of the website, it can take weeks or months of work. And that’s for people with experience doing content audits.
Who, then, should conduct a content audit? Here’s how rellify, the content performance platform, tackles the job:.
The analyst is someone who usually has a background in content marketing and SEO. They are tasked with compiling a lot of data and extracting insights and actions.
Here are just some of the things an analyst will be doing:
- Identifying the pages to be analyzed
- Collecting traffic and performance data
- Researching keywords and metrics
- Creating topic clusters
- Analyzing competitive gaps
- Identifying pages to be optimized
- Identifying new topics and keyword opportunities
The analyst uses these findings to help formulate the content strategy and actions required to get the client more search engine visibility.
The editor takes the handoff from the analyst and sees that in-depth, high quality articles are written based on the focus keywords, topic clusters, and content strategy. The editor and analyst often work together to talk through questions and stay focused on the content strategy.
The web manager
The web manager of the client is tasked with making the changes on the website, including updating posts, removing posts, or adding new ones. At rellify, we do this for our clients to make things easier for them and to ensure faster time to publication.
Content audit tools
There are many content audit tools available but these are our go-to’s.
Spreadsheet (Google Sheets, Microsoft Excel)
Without a doubt you’re going to need a spreadsheet to organize and crunch data. In the keyword research phase, spreadsheets are going to come in handy to manage, sort, and cluster keywords. And for the advanced user, pivot tables make it easier to summarize large amounts of data and findings.
Semrush, Ahrefs, and similar tools
There are plenty of keyword tools on the market to help with keyword research, search volume, and rankings. Semrush and Ahrefs are the best known and have some of the largest databases. These data engines are a good starting point for content audit data. Some of these tools offer a “content audit” feature, but our assessment is that they don’t go the last mile for what you need.
Google Analytics provides website traffic data. This is useful to see where and how much organic traffic is flowing to specific pages.
Google Search Console
Similar to Google Analytics, Google Search Console is a tool specifically used by webmasters and SEO experts. It has granular data about your organic search traffic, including pages, keywords and rankings.
Using AI for content audits
AI is the holy grail of the future. If we could only push a button and get a perfect content audit — maybe one day. But for now, AI and ML tools help automate the content audit process in a few areas, including keyword research, topic ideation, and writing assistance. There are some exciting AI/ML projects in the works, including ourselves at rellify with Neuraverse.
Learn more about rellify AI tech on our blog:
What Is Machine Learning and Why Does It Matter?
A Guide to Using Natural Language Processing for Content Marketing
Examples of a content audit
Content audits can vary by customer in depth and coverage, but the framework is similar. Below are a few examples of rellify content audits.
Competitor Gap Analysis
A competitor gap analysis shows how your site compares with other competitors. It’s essentially a benchmarking view. At rellify, we take it a few steps further by looking at traffic, pages, and keywords, segmented by topic cluster.
A content audit will result in finding opportunities for new content ideas. In collaboration with the customer, we use their business goals to build a list of article ideas focused on winning specific keywords and, more broadly, a set of topic-related keywords. Sometimes this can be one article and other times a series of articles.
Many people refer to this as content ideation, and although there are subtle differences between content ideation and topic ideation, these terms often are used interchangeably.
Before creating new content, it’s important to review existing content and see if it has potential for growth. Content can become stale and outdated and requires refreshing. Also, internal links should be checked for broken links or better pages to link to. At Rellify, we audit and optimize existing content for SEO optimization as part of our content audit process.
How do I get a Content Audit?
Content audits are necessary for building a successful content strategy and optimizing for performance. They help with understanding where you are today and where you need to go. Talk with a rellify expert to learn more. Our small yet mighty team of experts will help you get on the right track for building a robust content strategy. We’ve done many content audits for all types of businesses, including finance, health, SaaS, industrial, marketing and ecommerce. Got something new? We’re up for new challenges!
Get your content audit with rellify.
For a deeper understanding of content audits, we also suggest reading these articles:
What Are Topic Clusters and 6 Steps to Start Improving Your Content
Content Optimization Can Get You Results – and Relevance
How To Do A Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist
The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit in 2022