To develop a powerful content marketing strategy that will bring long-term results to your business, it is very important to analyze your existing articles and assess them in terms of key engagement metrics (sessions, shares, backlinks, etc.).
Conducting a content audit is the best way to understand what type of content is connecting with your audience, and then determine what pieces to generate next. This approach can help you stand out in an era of mass content production. Considering there are approximately 1.6 billion websites and more than 70 million blog posts published each month, there is an unfathomable amount of information for your audience to click on.
Creating content with no understanding of what works for your audience and your brand is a waste of time and resources. Content Audit can help you find the high performing types of content you should focus on, faster and easier.
How can this be done?
- Set up Content Audit for your domain.
- Choose the /blog subfolder from your sitemap or upload your links manually by browsing a file, then run the audit.
- Connect Google Analytics and Google Search Console to be able to check user behavior metrics (pageviews, sessions, bounce rate) and search queries of an article.
- Choose the metrics for an article that you consider to be successful (traffic, number of backlinks, social shares, etc.) according to your goals, market potential and the scale of your audience.
- Go to “Content Sets” section and add your own set based on the chosen metrics.
- Hit “Apply Changes” and SEMrush will find the articles that match with your set of metrics.
- Click on “Start Analyzing” to check the articles from your set. Go through each article and try to identify common traits of your most successful blog posts: pay attention to the article’s topic, length, structure, format and the presence of visual elements.
- Create tags related to different types of content (long read, articles with video, infographic, etc.) to easily filter your articles once you finish the analysis.
- Add notes in the “Collaboration” tab. These will help you remember your thoughts, conclusions and observations related to a particular type of content.
Once you identify the best types of content on your blog you can use this information to improve your content marketing strategy in the following ways:
- Use the key characteristics of your top performing content to update other articles and improve their performance. For example, if you find that long and well-structured articles get more traffic, rewrite short ones and improve their structure. Click on the “Save today’s data” button in the Content Audit tool to track how your results will change after the update.
- When you are preparing editorial planning with your team, focus on the types of articles that bring you the best results. Allocate more resources to creation and distribution of this content.
- Make sure that your top performing types of content are involved in your content funnel and are appropriately placed there. For example, if a particular type of content is more likely to attract traffic, use it for the “Awareness” stage.
- Make sure that these articles contain up-to-date information (recent stats, relevant links, banners and details about your products, etc.).
If you want to make even more out of your content marketing strategy, diversify your content by including more content types in your plan to appeal to every member of your audience. The easiest way to do that is to repurpose your existing content. Here are some of the best practices of content repurposing:
- Turn an article into an infographic, slideshow, or video.
- Cut a long article or video into shorter pieces that you can publish as a series.
- Combine short content pieces to create a white paper or a long-read article.
- Create slide presentations based on a blog post.
- Create usable snippets and informative images for social media.
As you progress in your content marketing efforts, use other content marketing tools by SEMrush to create a strategy based on data-driven decisions.