How to prioritize and process content audit results

Hey, wait, haven’t we already written about it?

Why isn’t this blog post rated on page 1 for anything yet?

Should we update this content or create a new one?

These are common questions when working on a content team. If you find yourself asking these questions, it would be helpful to take a step back and audit the content.

In dealing with enterprise clients, I always try to audit the content at the beginning of the engagement and then continue to run it every quarter.

The reason I want to audit the content at the beginning of the partnership is to better understand which content is performing well organically and which content on their site is a little more loved. May be required.

This content also helps the team to review the performance of all the content that they have written or that is available on their site.

It provides a 30,000-foot view of our site because sometimes we get so caught up in the mourning that we overlook the big picture or can’t remember what we’ve done in the past.


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As a content team, we are already bucketing or categorizing our content into different themes, personalities and categories.

In this article, we will focus on how to collect material during an audit in a way that will help you understand what to do with it in the future.

After auditing the content, we have several options, such as:

  • Protect and monitor advanced content.
  • Refine low-performing content.
  • Combine content that is very similar.
  • Create new content.

Let’s take a closer look at what content audits are, how we can prioritize content on our site, and what resources we may need to accomplish that.

What is Content Audit?

Content audit is the process of listing and analyzing all the content of the site to find out any and all strengths, weaknesses and opportunities.

Content audits are a quality view of your content, so they can vary from website to website. However, we can do them in the same form.


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Content audit is also a great way to break the cycle within the company as it may require multiple teams to analyze and implement it, including digital marketers, SEO professionals, content marketers, and web developers.

Content auditing enables us to begin to address any vulnerabilities within our website, such as thin content pages, visit metrics, or internal links. By analyzing this, we can plan what we need to do to improve our content.

The overall purpose of content audits is to enhance our organic search performance.

By analyzing how our past content has performed and which content our audience likes the most, we can begin to find gaps within our content strategy and for future content. Can come up with new ideas.

What resources are required for content audit?

Before we can start ranking and bucketing our content, we need to compile data on how the content is performing today.

We can use a variety of resources to analyze this content, depending on how many different resources you want to use.

In general, the first tool we need to use to identify all the indexable URLs on our site is a crawling tool.

After using Screaming Frog, DeepCrawl, or other similar tools, we can bring organic performance data such as keyword rankings from an enterprise SEO platform or a small tool we have.

In addition, it is useful to pull your Google Analytics or Google Search Console data to better understand how users are interacting with our existing content.

To summarize, the relevant resources we can use in content audits are:

  • Site crawling technology.
  • SEO software and tools.
  • Analytics and webmaster tools.

When we’re doing a light version of content audit, we usually look at just a few data points, such as organic traffic, keyword rankings, clicks, impressions, and maybe even internal links.

If we’re analyzing more in-depth, we might want to include a lot of other metrics, such as word count, goal change, bounce rate, on-page technical issues, and more.


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To summarize, the metrics we will consider for the audit of this material include:

  • Organic traffic.
  • Organic keyword classification is divided into Page 1, 2, 3+ rankings.
  • Conversions
  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • Click-through rate.
  • Links, both internal and external.
  • Word count
  • Bounce Rate.
  • Time on page.

The reason we want to use as many data sources as possible is that there are no specific rules for determining whether our content is doing XYZ, good or bad.

There is no single way to do SEO or analyze this content.

Different sources of data allow us to see trends within our content and on specific subfolders so that we can be informed of recommendations later.

Now that we’ve compiled all the data sources, let’s start tweaking how we can rank and bucket our content for priority.

(If you need more help with material audit nuts and bolts before proceeding, check out Ashley Segura’s material audit checklist.)

How to Bucket Content During Content Audit

After we have compiled all the data around our content, it’s time to split the content into different buckets.


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There are many ways to categorize our content. But overall, we need to find ways to better digest this data not only for ourselves but also for the other teams and stakeholders we will present it to.

1. Bucket content via subfolder / theme

The first step in auditing any content is to rank the pages on our site either in this subfolder or by theme.

Root subfolders may be the easiest way to do this because they are already in the proper URL structure.

We can also start sorting content by business line, product, campaign, or consumer intent.

The reason for this is, in the beginning, that we may begin to see trends within certain subfolders or service lines on our website.

In addition, there are times when different teams are in control of their own business lines and pages so it can be helpful when we need to spread the word later.


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If one team is willing to make more changes than the other, it may allow us to audit small content on our site.

By analyzing the content on our site, we can see if there are some areas that work better than others. We can start copying SEO winning and learning on other parts of our site.

Now we need to start assigning different scores to our content based on the data we collect.

2. Bucket material in terms of performance (good, moderate, and low efficiency)

One important way we can prioritize and get content out is through performance.

We have a ton of data to absorb. But we need to start assigning scores to our content so that they understand what we should do with that content.

In general, once we have all the data sources in one basic document, the next step is to find the average from the performance data (traffic, keyword rankings, internal links, conversions, etc.).


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Searching average, it allows us to see which content is already doing well and which content needs a little more love and attention.

Once we have the average, we can keep all the URLs that are above average as good performance. URLs that have fallen below average are performing poorly. Everything else in the middle is moderate.

This is where there are no hard and fast rules to follow. Each content is audited differently and we can use different metrics depending on what part of the site we are looking at.

For example, if we’re auditing content around our blog and we know there aren’t a ton of changes to this subfolder, it might make sense to use it as a big data point. Don’t be This is because we know that the average across the board is going to go down.

However, if we know that the blog lacks internal links and that is one of the main reasons why we are doing this analysis, then it is definitely worthwhile to use this data point.


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Now that we’ve categorized our content into different ranges based on their performance, we can make them more buckets based on what we want to do with the content.

3. Bucket material based on actionable next steps (do nothing, improve again, strengthen)

The data we’ve collected so far needs to be put to good use and should be a viable next step in terms of content within the audit.

We’ve already broken down the content into different score ranges based on performance, so now we have to decide what we should do with it.

We need to give our content teams SEO good news and tell them what specific action we want them to take based on SEO data.

The content we feel is in “good” performance and we’re happy with it because it ranks or modifies well for many keywords, we should have nothing to do with it.

If we see a lot of content in a “moderate” performance bucket that has a lot of page 2 keywords or even changes well compared to the other pages in that bucket, then we need the page. Improving again should be considered.


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By updating the page and trying to rank for more keywords, we can formally make the page more visible and increase the amount of traffic or conversions to that page.

When we look at the contents of the “underperforming” bucket, we can do a few things here.

We can improve this page again and hopefully improve its ranking. Or, we might consider strengthening this content.

During the audit of many different content with clients, we begin to see how many pages with similar topics are and are actually competing with each other.

If so, it may make sense to reuse the material to reinforce it or to make a single piece the winner.

There should now be actionable next steps regarding all content on our site, and we can begin work on creating a timeline for improvement.

In conclusion

Content auditing is one of the most useful things you can do as a content team or SEO team to take a step back from the website and analyze what’s happening.


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Content audits always lead to insightful discoveries, whether it’s a piece of material we didn’t know about or a ton of material we didn’t realize was so similar.

We need to analyze the data we have compiled so that we know what to do, so here are the buckets we recommend for content classification during the audit:

  • Idea: Subfolder, business line, customer intent.
  • Performance: Good, moderate, low performance.
  • Next steps workable: Do nothing, reform, strengthen.

From the developers to the content team, every team needs priority. Using this data, we can make a larger dataset more digestible for non-SEOs and other internal teams.

Content audit only works if we analyze the data and act on the recommendation. If we do not change, we will not see improvement.

Content must be monitored using enterprise platforms or other SEO tools as you begin to make changes.


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Keep an eye on what’s happening after making the changes, and also monitor the content you know is already doing well.

The best part of content auditing is that you can always run it again later to see what happened to the content that was once marked as moderate or underperforming.

Pro Tip: Keep track of past content audits you’ve run so you can continue reporting past assigned scores.

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Featured image: Shutterstock / TarikVision

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