Pruning trees and weeding your garden doesn’t sound like a whole lot of fun but they’re both necessary if you want to have a boon in growth of your flora and a healthy and beautiful landscape. The same can be said for the growth of your site. The benefits of a content audit can be considered the pruning and weeding needed to insure a healthy and prosperous site!
With a good audit, you can detail many different aspects of how your site is seen, how well it flows with interactivity via links and articles and where on the scale of SEO rankings you are. An audit can assess unknown problems and help you rid your site of them. A good audit can also help you drive more traffic to your site via new links and fresh data.
In a nutshell, a content audit is the task of listing and checking all of the content on your website, weeding out duplicate or irrelevant content and streamlining it to create a clear and concise database. This is important so you can assess whether all your content is as fresh, accurate and relevant as you need it to be. Is your content optimized for SEO? Revising your content can bring increases to SEO ranking as well as new visitors to your site. Building an informed content strategy improves reaching your initial goals.
3 Ways to Conduct Your Content Audit:
A) Content Sample: This is a mini version of a whole content audit; it is a less complex sampling of your website.
B) Partial Inventory: A listing of a section of your site or a time frame: the last three months for products. It’s compartmentalized for individual areas of your site.
C) Complete Inventory: Pretty self explanatory as this would be a total inventory of your entire site’s content, down to files, links and video content.
The basics of an audit can be time consuming and detailed but are absolutely worth every second your team puts into it!
4 Simple Ways to Get Started on Your Audit:
- Collect Your URLs: There are several crawl tools such as Screaming Frog (free and paid versions) that can gather them quickly and concisely for you. This will show you which links are possibly broken or old and which ones work well.
- Import Urls Into a KPI/Data Gathering Tool: Use Google Analytics (free) for website visit counts, Bulk Social Checker (free) for a social media count, Moz Pro Open Site Explorer (paid) or Small SEO (free) for backlinks and WebpageFX (free) for readability are certainly worth the time and effort. For our own agency, we use Raven Tools (paid), and have found it extremely useful for delivering accurate SEO audit results through its crawl feature which explores backlinks, image tags, meta descriptions and more!
- Analyze Your Collected Content. Find and prune broken links and remove unwanted or outdated content, do keyword research, matching keywords to either the best pages to guide changes or to pages that already rank highly with SEO. Categorize with spreadsheets.
- Start a Content Calendar. For ease of site manageability, a content calendar is an easy way to keep track of what you’d like to see in your future content on your site.
Now you have room for fresh content to display new ideas, influencer interviews, guest posts and also a clean visual perspective to showcase your site and drive new traffic towards it. In doing an audit, you can clearly assess which aspects work, which ones work well and which ones garner you a home run for your site. Just like a physical garden, a website takes time, effort and work to keep it thriving, healthy and beautiful and an audit is a great way to keep on top of things!