After the content audit: 7 steps for improving content

After the content audit: 7 steps for improving content

A content audit is only useful if you take action on your findings. Take these post-audit steps to boost your content marketing efforts.

While we may all have goals when we start producing content, it can be easy to stray away from them or stop tracking them over time. 

As your website grows, it’s recommended you run a content audit periodically to allow yourself to reset your goals and expectations and align your content with your current business KPIs. 

You can greatly expand your content marketing campaign and boost your business outcomes by aligning these goals and acting on information in your content audit. 

Performing a content audit is only one step toward improving your marketing performance.

To truly see results from your efforts, you must actively fix any problems in your audit and align your strategy with your established goals. 

In this article, you’ll learn seven ongoing steps that can help you improve content after your audit is complete and optimize new content to reflect your business goals. 

1. Establish clear KPIs

Generally, the first step of any content audit will be a review of your business goals to help you benchmark content performance moving forward. 

After your audit, it’s essential to benchmark these KPIs and track various fields of progress in your analytics. 

There are several metrics to use for this, including:

  • Traffic/pageviews
  • Organic keyword position
  • Backlinks
  • Bounce rate
  • Conversion rate
  • Time on page

Once you’ve established a list of KPIs for benchmarking and comparison to the content audit, you can discover strategies to improve existing content based on your intended outcomes.

For example, are you looking to rank for higher volume keywords that bring in more traffic? Are you looking for less competitive ones with higher click-through rates? 

Furthermore, KPIs can be used to model new content that reflects your underlying business strategy. 

2. Prioritize technical fixes

In your research, you may uncover a technical issue causing your content to rank below its potential, such as page speed, indexing or crawling issues. 

Resolving these problems on your backend is an essential first step to ensuring that all present and future content can rank higher in organic search. 

3. Identify opportunities for wins

Now it’s time to dive deeply into your audit and identify potential opportunities for easy wins. 

For example, in this content audit guide, the author divides her content into several categories, including underperforming, thin, and outdated content. 

These categories allow you to implement easy changes, such as updating body text to reflect new changes or to make content more engaging to improve your content’s relative performance. 

Of course, you can always get more granular, conduct a backlink audit on underperforming pieces of content, and build external and internal links. 

Look for content ranking for “striking distance” keywords and make changes, based on the data, that will help it move to the first page. 

I also recommend writing new topics for high-volume keywords you might be ranking for in Position 41 or lower. 

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4. Redirect old and underperforming pages

Throughout your content audit, you might find several URLs with duplicate content and also some content that is just outdated or irrelevant. 

In that case, I recommend implementing a 301 redirect to a similar page to help give that page some link authority. 

However, consider being tentative about 301 redirects, as you might create more problems for your developer if you abuse them too much. 

5. Revamp old content to follow new guidelines

Updating content allows you to win any opportunities you found during your audit. Generally, I like to let the data inform me. 

For instance, if I find some content that is outperforming others and leading to better traffic, I might update my internal linking strategy to promote this page.

Ultimately, I recommend using content audits as a guide and a reset to develop a new content calendar and outline strategy. 

Create a healthy mix of new and revamped content to give you a boost in Google search.

And if it makes sense, I like reformatting or transferring content into a new medium. 

Conducting podcasts around existing content on your site or adding a video on underperforming pages could give them a much-needed boost. 

6. Promote new and revamped content

After updating your content, you'll need to promote it to give it traction. I recommend the following promotional strategies for any piece of content:

  • Sharing on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
  • Building links.
  • Tagging an influencer.
  • Sharing in a newsletter.
  • Advertising over search or Facebook.
  • Syndicating content.

By getting more eyeballs and traffic to your pages, you can use your content to create better results for your website. 

7. Monitor your analytics

You must continuously track your analytics and ensure your content is performing to your preferred standards. 

Your analytics will give you an excellent benchmark to measure your content’s performance and give you ideas about where your content is underperforming or lacking. 

Similar to everything in life, there is no get-rich-quick scheme or something you can buy to make your content rank better. 

Instead, content marketing requires an ongoing commitment and a holistic approach, leveraging the best practices from technical SEO and link building to perform at its best. 

However, with a content audit, you are one step closer to achieving your business goals using content marketing. Now, you just need to start doing the heavy lifting.  

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

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