In the past, Google’s SEO algorithm paid the most attention to who had the most content on a particular topic–whoever had the loudest voice, in a sense. Creators who could crank out massive amounts of marginally useful content were favored because Google assumed they naturally had the most to say about their chosen topic. Fortunately, this is no longer the case. Google pays more attention to quality of content now, meaning that people who actually have useful information get far more visibility enough if they publish far less content.
This change is a welcome one, but it does mean you may need to step up your content game. Do your articles and webpages meet Google’s standards of high-quality writing? Do you still have published pages that are no longer as useful as they once were and may be impacting your ranking? You can find the answer to both questions by periodically running a content audit on your entire website.
What is a Content Audit?
During a website content audit, you’ll look over every page and blog post on your website and analyze how useful they still are. You’ll also look at how well they perform in SEO and conversion rates. In a sense, an audit gives you the chance to give your website a grade on its overall performance. Once you know what needs work, you can get to work bringing your website up to date.
Pro Tip: Content audits look at far more than what your website says. A comprehensive audit examines your SEO ranking, ongoing relevance, conversion rates, and much more.
The Website Content Audit Process
Your content audit should follow this process:
- Take inventory of your website’s content. Note which webpages are easy for search engines to index or crawl and which might lead crawlers to a dead end. Which webpages have been declining in SEO rankings over the past few months? Which pages are old and likely need updated information?
- Assemble your raw data. Organize your information by category, SEO performance, areas of concern, and any other relevant considerations. This makes it easy to tell at a glance what areas need work the most. In your notes, include plans to improve pages that need work. Do they need to be rewritten? Do they need broken links fixed? Should the page be removed entirely?
- Write up your summary. A birds-eye view of your data is as much for you as it is for anyone working with you. Don’t worry about the details here. Point out overall areas of concern and develop suggestions for improvements.
Moving Forward After the Audit
Once you know how much work your website needs, it’s time to get on it! Work on rewriting or removing pages as necessary, fixing broken links, adding or removing keywords, or any other tasks that will improve your website. Most importantly, remember that content audits should be a regular part of your website maintenance. SEO standards and audience expectations evolve rapidly. Periodic content audits ensure that your website can keep up with demand!
Offer Only the Best Content
Google and online users aren’t looking for someone with the loudest voice but nothing to say. When someone is on the hunt for information, they’re far more likely to trust someone with high-quality, substantial content than someone with a plethora of keyword-stuffed posts. Regularly performing content audits on your website allows you to avoid accidentally slipping into the latter category and losing readers or, worse, your high SEO rank.
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