How to Do a Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist

How to Do a Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist
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When was the final time you ran carried out a content material audit?

Can’t keep in mind?

You aren’t alone.

Most content material creators are so centered on creating new content material that they overlook to audit their present content material.

Here are a few causes why you want to audit your content material:

  • Goals: Is your content material reaching its targets? Are you gaining any ROI from the content material you’ve produced? You received’t know until you measure your content material’s efficiency and observe it by common audits.
  • Staleness: Your content material can turn out to be stale and even outdated over time. Don’t beat your self up, although. Stale content material isn’t all the time your fault. What was related two years in the past is probably not as related now. On the intense aspect, you might simply want to add a little additional spice to it to adapt to the occasions.
  • Wrong Information: As your content material ages, information and knowledge that when have been correct can turn out to be inaccurate. Running an audit by your content material commonly will guarantee your submit’s accuracy and shield your model’s repute.
  • Know What’s Working: How will you ever know what sort of content material or which weblog submit is your most profitable should you by no means return to audit all your content material items? Perhaps pumping out three weblog posts a week is absolutely simply tiring, and never truly producing any outcomes. You’ll by no means know should you don’t return and do a content material audit to see which items carry out greatest, and which have been the worst.

Hopefully one, if not all, of these bullets spoke to you and also you now perceive why it’s so essential to audit your content material commonly.

Now, let’s get into the audit breakdown.

Content Details Audit

The first a part of a content material audit is dissecting the fundamentals on the content material piece and is a one-time entry in your audit.

Looks at how the content material was created, how many individuals it took to create the content material, and the fundamental publishing data.

How to Do a Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist

You’ll need to observe the next for each bit of content material in a separate content material particulars audit spreadsheet:

  • URL
  • Author
  • Team Produced (content material group, social group, search engine optimization group, and so on.)
  • Total Time (how lengthy did it take to produce the content material in its entirety)
  • Title
  • Date
  • Content Type (is it a weblog submit, infographic, case research, and so on.)
  • Content Goal (what was the purpose of manufacturing the content material: backlinks, visitors, conversions, and so on.)
  • Word rely
  • Comments
  • Shares (break this down by social community and complete)

Content Data Audit

Here comes the enjoyable half.

The content material knowledge portion of your audit wants to include its personal useful dandy excel doc, identical to this one I created for you guys and gals.

Perform a Past Audit

Before we get into the info, you want to backtrack and audit your previous produced content material.

Knowing how the content material you’ve already printed carried out will enable you to gauge what sort of content material you want to create sooner or later, and what sort to not create.

This a part of your content material audit goes to be very in-depth and time-consuming at first.

You’ll want to determine how far again you need to start your content material audit after which collect the entire content material URLs for that point interval.

I like to recommend going again at the very least 1 12 months and gathering knowledge for a way your content material carried out the 12 months earlier than.

Collecting all your previous content material URLs doesn’t have to be a guide course of, although.

Luckily, there’s loads of web site analytics device like Google Analytics or SEMrush’s Content Audit (disclosure: I work for SEMrush) device that may rapidly audit your content material primarily based in your sitemap knowledge and give you the listing of content material pages.

How to Do a Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist

Prepare Yourself for Ongoing Audits

Once you’ve caught up and added all of final 12 months’s content material into your Excel doc, you’ll need to repeat this audit exercise for brand new content material on a weekly foundation.

It will probably be a lot simpler to preserve observe of your content material and audit it commonly once you’re solely having to return one week to enter knowledge.

Add the next to your Excel doc and add the latest numbers and stats on a weekly foundation.

Over time, should you see any drastic adjustments take notice.

Sometimes content material, particularly evergreen content material, can take months earlier than it actually takes off.

Metrics to Track

Here are the metrics you’ll need to observe to your content material knowledge audit:

Organic Traffic

Ideally, our content material could be receiving a lot of natural visitors.

We wouldn’t have to put any additional in direction of promoting, individuals would simply organically come throughout our content material, like it, and have interaction.

If you aren’t getting a lot of natural visitors to your content material that may very well be a potential purple flag.

Perhaps there’s something incorrect with:

  • Your content material technique.
  • How you’re distributing the content material.
  • The content material sort.
  • The content material itself.

By evaluating the natural visitors metrics commonly in your audit, you’ll know when you possibly can pat your self on the again or once you want to begin over.

Bounce Rate

Are customers bouncing proper off your content material web page with out viewing another pages in your web site?

If so, that’s a signal of unhealthy content material.

Ideally, your content material is simply a gateway that leads a person from a search to your web site, entertains or informs them, after which guides them to tour the remainder of your web site for his or her wants.

Unsure of what a good bounce price is?

Rocket Fuel put collectively this graphic to describe the number of percentages:

How to Do a Content Audit: The Ultimate Checklist


Bring on the backlinks – however solely the nice backlinks that give us a lot of increase and credibility, please!

You want to observe the backlinks that your content material produces on a common foundation for 2 massive causes:

  • Your backlinks will change over time. The first day you publish a new piece of content material you might achieve 2-Three backlinks. Let a week go by and now 10-12 backlinks have appeared. A 12 months down the highway and now you will have 589 backlinks to one piece of content material.
  • Not all backlinks are good. Sure, 589 backlinks may sound like a good factor, however not if 500 of these backlinks are doubtlessly harmful to your web site and lead to spam. Those 500 hyperlinks want to be eliminated ASAP or your web site and rankings might take a hit. If you don’t monitor all your backlinks by auditing your content material commonly, you’ll miss out on the chance to take away harmful backlinks earlier than they start to have an effect on your rankings.

Time on Page

If your content material is a long-form weblog submit of two,500 phrases and the typical time on web page is 18 seconds, one thing is incorrect.

This metric will inform you in case your content material simply isn’t proper to your viewers, or whether it is and also you want to create extra content material specializing in subjects identical to it.

Unique Visitors

We need a number of distinctive guests viewing our content material and growing the quantity of views the piece of content material will get.

The extra views, the extra probabilities of ROI from content material like conversions, engagement, shares, and backlinks.

Pages Per Session

How many pages is the person taking a look at after they’ve considered your content material?

What pages are they going to?

A weblog submit about the perfect winter coats to have can encourage a person to then click on on hyperlinks inside the weblog submit and store round in your web site for various coats. Heck, possibly they’ll even make a buy (<– aim!).

New vs. Returning Users

Are you attracting a new viewers with this piece of content material?

Returning customers are nice. Returning prospects are even higher.

But we additionally want to purpose to entice new customers with our content material.

Traffic Sources

Learn the place your visitors is coming from by defining your fundamental visitors sources.

If a majority of your content material’s visitors is coming from Facebook, submit extra of your content material in your Facebook web page.

If hardly any is coming out of your e-mail newsletters, it might be time to restructure your emails.


If your aim for a new piece of content material is to generate 100 conversions within the first quarter, let’s say e-mail opt-ins to your e-mail e-newsletter, you want to add a column and observe the variety of conversions coming in from that piece of content material.

The first week your conversions may very well be as little as 2 and also you begin to doubt the content material completely.

Let two months go by, and proceed to audit every week, and spot that now the content material has produced 140 complete conversions, not solely hitting your aim however surpassing it.

Measure Results

Based on what your unique content material targets are, you want to determine whether or not your content material is working for you.

Each piece of content material you audit may have a number of knowledge metrics hooked up to it. These metrics will let you know should you’re hitting the mark or lacking it drastically.

For the content material that does effectively, pay attention to the content material particulars audit. Analyze what sort of content material it was, the subject, who produced it, and when it printed.

Repeating your successes can assist you create equally high-performing content material.

For the content material items that don’t hit your targets, take additional notice of their metrics.

Sometimes it’s the channels the content material was printed on. Other occasions it’s a combination of issues such because the creator, timeframe of publication, and/or the content material sort.

Don’t be afraid to attempt new content material varieties so long as you’re keen to measure its effectiveness by common auditing.

Image Credits

Featured Image: Paulo Bobita
All screenshots taken by creator

Source hyperlink search engine optimization

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