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4 Action Items Every Content Audit Should Include

content_audit.jpgThere's no doubt content marketing works — especially when you regularly publish high quality, helpful content. Companies that publish 11 or more blog posts per month have nearly three times more traffic than companies that publish zero to four blog posts per month, according to HubSpot.

But if you've spent any time in content marketing, you know coming up with fresh and engaging ideas is a challenge, especially if you've been publishing for a while. That's why performing a content audit is so crucial to reigniting your content engine and driving even greater success.

Let's take a look at what it takes to perform a worthwhile audit.

Why You Should Conduct a Content Audit

Generally, a content audit involves an analysis of all the content your organization has published to help you determine what's performing best and what your strategy may be missing. However, to increase the value of your audit, you should also include a competitor review.

A competitive analysis helps you identify your competitor's strengths and expose areas for improvement in your own organization. And when it comes to content, it can help you better understand topics your audience cares about while simultaneously revealing gaps in your editorial plan.

4 Essentials Every Content Audit Should Include

For maximum effectiveness, your audit should include the following:

  1. Keyword research. If you're struggling to come up with ideas, a little keyword research will help get you back on track. Tools like SEMrush not only tell you the SEO value of a keyword but also suggest similar phrases that your audience might use during their search.

  2. A competitor review. Choose your top three competitors and review all the blog posts they've published over the past several months. What are they regularly covering that you've missed? Remember that a competitive analysis in marketing does not mean stealing other organizations' strategies — it simply means examining the areas in which they're providing value that you could also address through your own content.

  3. Performance deep dive. Take a thorough look at various content metrics, such as page views and bounce rate, to see which pieces of content had the highest traffic and engagement. Look for trends in topics, and consider new angles for topics that have performed well in the past.

  4. Social engagement analysis. From comments and likes to shares and retweets, take a look at which of your content assets (and your competitors' content pieces) have the highest social engagement. Just as you did with your performance deep dive, look for trends and topics that generated interest, and consider new ways to tackle those same topics.

While maintaining a steady flow of relevant, interesting and engaging content takes a lot of work, it's also been proven to boost traffic and help nurture leads toward a conversion further down the funnel. By performing an audit at least once per year, you can keep your ideas fresh and your editorial calendar full.

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