By Anna May Trogstad
An effective website content audit should be done annually and if executed well it can deliver invaluable insights into your content marketing strategy.
A recent study shows that 52% of B2B marketers attribute business stagnancy to a lack of effective content marketing, and 57% believe that not enough time dedicated to content marketing decreases an organization’s content marketing success. Despite these numbers, only 37% of B2B marketers report having a content marketing strategy.
It’s easy to understand why you need to carry out a website content audit. A good content audit will take time and this should be considered before beginning such a project. If you cannot devote the amount of time required to complete a quality audit it is better to wait until you can.
What is a content audit?
A content audit involves reviewing all the content on your website to evaluate strengths and weaknesses. It will help you gain insights into how to prioritize your future marketing strategy and how to effectively grow your website.
A content audit is not a content inventory, and should not be mistaken for one. Although you will need to do an inventory of your content during a content audit, an audit goes much further and is a qualitative assessment of the content on your website. To conduct an effective website content audit, follow these steps:
Step 1: Identify all of your content
Begin by collating all of the content on your website in one place. You can do this by using a web content crawling tool which will identify your current content and collate a spreadsheet of this information. There are many crawling tools available, some paid and some free. These tools search your site and import all of your URLs into one manageable table.
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Step 2: Gather additional data
Once you have identified all the URLs on your website, you can use the crawling tool to gather KPIs and SEO data for each URL. This data will help you to understand which content is working on your website and which is not. If you choose to use a crawling tool that doesn’t gather KPI and SEO data, you will need to import your list of URLs into a tool that does.
Potential SEO data to collect:
- Page titles
- Page visits—This will give you basic but valuable insight into which URLs are most popular.
- Average time on a page/bounce rate—This will tell you whether or not viewers are bounding through your website or actually taking the time to read the content.
Content marketing data to collect:
- Internal and external inbound links
- Date last updated—If a page has been updated on several occasions and is still not receiving a high amount of visitors, it may be time to delete this content.
- Word count—This may give you a further insight into the performance of a page based on whether there is too much or too little content available.
- Type of content—Blog posts, status page, etc.
- Content author—Who originally created or edited the post.
- Shared count—This will show you the number of times a URL is shared using social media.
It is not necessary to collect every variable of asset data; instead, tailor the collection to only a handful of possible data types that will provide the insights that you need. You can do this by determining what goals you want your website to achieve and selecting data that will help you to understand how to move closer to those goals.