CONTENT AUDIT

Is your content doing its job?

Let’s do a content audit to uncover your content’s strength and weaknesses. Identify top-performing pieces, plan content creation, or find content to remove or update.

Here’s what a content audit process at Acomplix looks like:

Defining Scope, Goals, and Metrics

What content assets will we analyze? What are the goals we want the content to achieve? What KPIs and metrics do we look at to measure how well the content supports these goals?

Creating a Content Inventory

Next, we’ll gather all the content and create a content inventory. Then we’ll extract relevant metrics and data from different analytics tools to closely analyze each piece of content in the next step.

Analyzing the Content and Data

In this step, we analyze how each piece of content performs against established goals and KPIs. We also assess the broader content context, relevancy, and purpose to decide what to do with it next.

Reporting and Strategy Development

In the final step, we create a content audit report outlining the current status and recommendations for improvement. Based on that report, we can start drafting a content plan and strategy that’s aligned with your overarching business goals.

CONTENT AUDIT: COMMON QUESTIONS ANSWERED

WHAT IS A CONTENT AUDIT?

A content audit is a systematic process of organizing and analyzing all available content assets in your business. Mostly it refers to digital marketing content (website content or social media content).

Simply, it means collecting existing content, analyzing its performance, and finding its strengths and weaknesses.

WHY CONDUCT CONTENT AUDITS?

As your brand and customer habits evolve, some content gets stale. Your old content may not support your brand message or business goals anymore. More so, old content can become incorrect or plain irrelevant.

Through content audits, you can find and fix issues such as

  • old content in need of a refresh (aka content decay)
  • “weak” content that doesn’t help (or even confuses) visitors
  • inaccurate content, like outdated statistics or disproved theories
  • mentions of discontinued products and services
  • old ‘news’ or event recaps
  • links to moved or deleted pages
  • orphaned content pages visitors can’t find because they’re not linked up anywhere

On the flip side, you can improve future content based on audit data by

  • finding the types of content your audience reacts to best
  • learning what content formats and types visitors prefer
  • spotting seasonal trends to take advantage of in your content marketing strategy
  • finding traffic, lead, or conversion magnets
  • identifying success patterns and replicate them across other pages
  • finding interesting topics for your audience that you haven’t covered yet

All things considered, conducting an audit is a great way to uncover valuable data from past content to guide your strategy in the future.

WHEN IS A CONTENT AUDIT NECESSARY?

You can audit your content at different times and for various reasons. But, there are a few common scenarios when an audit makes sense, such as

  • starting a bigger marketing initiative. What assets do you already have on a topic? Can you reuse some existing pieces? How can you align them with your campaign objectives?
  • migrating or redesigning your website. Audit content to improve the information architecture and cut redundant stuff.
  • after big search engine algorithm updates. If your website traffic is nosediving after an update, you can find and fix the issues causing the drop.
  • changing business strategies or discontinuing products or services. Check if there are obsolete pages to remove and align the rest with new goals.
  • changes to the market, like heightened competition. Analyze how your content measures up against your competitors’ content.
  • optimizing your content budget. Allocate more resources towards content types that drive revenue or attract leads.

 

Aside from these, it’s good to conduct audits periodically to keep an eye on the big picture. You’ll spot negative trends faster and react before they can do any damage.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I AUDIT CONTENT?

You should audit your website content at least twice a year. According to the latest Semrush State of Content Marketing 2022 Global Report, 65% of companies who saw success with content marketing run content audits even more frequently than twice a year.

Consider that it can take three to six months for new content to establish a footing in search engines. Auditing it sooner might not give you a full picture of the content performance.

For large websites, auditing all content at once is challenging. You can therefore audit portions of your content (e.g. one blog category) every month.

Or, you can audit some content segments every three months to make sure it helps you hit quarterly business goals, like conversions or sales.

Some types of content, like onboarding materials and tutorials, should be audited and updated as necessary, e.g. when introducing new features or a new interface.

Finally, you might want to audit visual content after a rebranding to align images or videos with new brand guidelines.

However, the cadence depends on your goals and the scope of content to analyze.

While the frequency and scope of your content audits are customizable, the most important thing is consistency. The study we referenced above found that a staggering 46% of companies who failed with content marketing in 2021 never run content audits.

WHAT SHOULD I INCLUDE IN A CONTENT AUDIT?

You can go as broad or as narrow as needed. Audit all content or just some segments. Same goes for details you’ll look at; do you need to analyze organic web traffic metrics only, or other KPIs too?

Aside from content itself, here are some other components of all content audits:

  • goals for the content audit
  • a set of KPIs and metrics
  • a content inventory
  • content performance data
  • criteria for quality evaluation
  • an audit report

 

Fundamentally, know the reason why you’re doing the audit. Ask specific questions. From there, you can decide what content to include and what data best answers your questions.

HOW DO I GATHER CONTENT FOR A CONTENT AUDIT?

Some common places where your content lives are:

  • file manager/marketing folders
  • collateral that sales team members use
  • employee handbooks and internal knowledge bases
  • content used by customer success teams
  • your business’ CRM and CMS, etc.

 

Once you’ve uncovered content sources and gathered the content into a spreadsheet, you’ll have your content inventory. The content inventory can be organized by segments to analyze, e.g. landing pages or blog posts.

If you’re unsure how to create an inventory yourself, feel free to reach out. We’ll provide a simple customized template you can use to gather and catalogue your content.

HOW LONG DOES A CONTENT AUDIT TAKE?

The volume and scope of the content, the type of audit, and the goals influence how long an audit takes.

At Acomplix, we can complete some content audits within hours, while some might require weeks. We’ll go through all these things beforehand to provide an accurate timeline.

One thing we’d like to point out is that you should also consider the time to implementation. Arguably, this matters more than the audit duration itself.

Once the audit is completed, who on the team will implement the changes? How much can they manage on top of their regular workload? How fast can they tackle urgent issues?

This is why assessing your team’s capacity matters when considering your content audit goals. The more in-depth the audit, the more action items there will be. And if it’s more than your team can handle, it’ll also take longer for the audit to prove it’s value.

WHAT ARE THE GOALS FOR A CONTENT AUDIT?

Most audit goals fall into one or more of the following high-level objectives:

  • improving SEO results
  • increasing user engagement
  • improving the conversion rate
  • enhancing the user experience

 

You can the narrow goals further, like ‘find opportunities to improve internal linking for better SEO results’.

Specific goals are better than broad ones because they yield more straightforward and impactful recommendations.

The key when setting goals is prioritization; what to tackle first that will have the greatest impact on your business?

Content audit goals vary from case to case. The ultimate goal, though, is to see what your content is or isn’t doing right.

HOW IS CONTENT EVALUATED IN A CONTENT AUDIT?

Different types of content prove their value through different data and metrics.

For example, metrics such as page views, average session duration, time on page, bounce rate, etc. show whether your content resonates with the target audience.

For a different question, we’ll look at different data sets. Generally, data for each piece of content is pulled from different analytics or a content audit tool.

The trick is in knowing how to read the data and understand the story it’s telling. Some attributes like seasonality or sales funnel position might not be obvious at first but could greatly skew the results.

A human review of the content is vital too. Especially where user experience is concerned, there’s no replacement for a qualitative human assessment.

That’s why it’s a good idea to entrust a professional to audit your content. They have access to industry tools and understand different content facets you might not have dealt with before.

As objective outsiders, you can rest assured that they’ll provide an unbiased and critical review—much like your customers will evaluate your content, too.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF A CONTENT AUDIT FOR SEO?

Search engines want to serve users relevant, correct, and fresh content. An audit exposes content pieces that don’t meet these criteria.

 

Say you have some old content with steady organic traffic, but it might need a little boost to get from page two to page one. Finding and optimizing such pieces can quickly help you improve your rankings with little investment.

 

Similarly, do you have some web content that gets no traffic?

 

It just clogs your website and makes search engine crawlers work harder to find important content. Remove this content so search engines waste fewer resources crawling your site. Consequently, any new content you publish gets crawled and indexed faster.

 

Another benefit is finding content gaps. Does your competitor publish content on topics you haven’t addressed? Are they ranking for important keywords that you don’t?

 

There are many more ways to improve SEO through a content audit. Regular audits set the stage for effective SEO and content maintenance. You’ll catch broken links before they ruin the user experience (or your conversions), create a smarter link-building strategy, and monitor how your content is meeting its SEO goals.

HOW MUCH DOES A CONTENT AUDIT COST?

Same as with time requirements, prices vary. At Acomplix, content audits start at $1,000 for smaller websites. We also offer combined SEO and content audit packages starting at $2,000.

Note that these numbers are orientational only.

Rather than charging according to the number of pages or content pieces, we consider the complexity of audit goals and business requirements.

We aim to provide a fair quote according to how much value we estimate the audit will produce for your business.

Feel free to send us your website URL and tell us about your concerns and expectations. We’ll hop on a call to discuss the nitty gritty, and draft a proposal with a detailed cost and timeline breakdown.

If you choose to work with Acomplix for an SEO and content strategy and content management, the SEO and/or content audit are free.

WHAT DO I NEED TO PROVIDE FOR THE AUDIT?

You can create a content inventory on your own if you prefer, or we can work together on creating one.

For web content, we will need access to your Google Analytics and Google Search Console data to analyze content performance. We might also need some info from your content management system.

If you wish to audit content from other sources than the website, we’ll need some insights from your email tool, social media, or other platforms where the content is published.

If there’s offline or gated content you wish to include in the audit, we’ll ask for credentials to access to those materials as well.

WHAT TYPE OF REPORT DO I RECEIVE AFTER THE AUDIT?

Once we finish the audit, you receive a content audit report. These are some of its main components:

  • An executive summary outlining the most important findings
  • the content analysis: a breakdown of content performance in the context of your business objectives and competitor content (i.e. a bird’s-eye view of separate content pieces we analyzed)
  • the action plan, ordered by highest to lowest priorities, including the steps and resources required to fix possible issues, as well as potential gains
  • recommendations and best practices to follow in your future content strategy
  • miscellaneous: an overall assessment of the website’s UX, usability, structure, navigation, etc.

 

The report will be a custom document tailored to your website. Therefore, the recommendations will come prioritized by business impact and importance.

We’ll condense the report into a slide deck if you need to present the findings to team members or other stakeholders. We’ll also submit the content audit sheet we used in the process. You can freely continue to use it for content monitoring in the future.

WHAT ARE THE NEXT STEPS AFTER A CONTENT AUDIT?

After completing the audit, it’s time to get to work.

From the report, you’ll know what content to upgrade, move, or delete entirely. You’ll also have an idea of what new content to create, what purpose it should serve, and what to adjust in your marketing strategy.

We’ll gladly help you translate audit findings into a strategy. But if you choose to continue without us, that’s cool too!

Our audit service includes 15 consulting hours for up to three months after the audit should you have any questions once you start implementing the recommendations.