What does the content audit even mean? Is it really necessary? As a Phoenix web design company, we have to say – yes, a content audit is necessary if you have a business website.
To understand it better, think of it as a systematic review of your inventory. With new content being produced and published regularly, the old content can sometimes go unnoticed. To the degree that the links in those old posts don’t work anymore or the information gets outdated. Or maybe there’s content that has simply become obsolete (as you’ve grown) and you don’t want to share it with your audience any longer.
Who can do a content audit?
If you have an in-house content strategist, she should be the one to handle your site content audit. If you don’t have such a specialist in your team, you can of course outsource this process completely.
On the other hand, if you are confident enough, you can do this yourself. You will have to begin with compiling a list of all the URLS manually or by a site crawl. After that, you have to evaluate the data based on the key criteria you find important.
The easiest way will be to let a content strategist do it for you as they have the essential skills and experience, not to mention the passion that’s absolutely required or this stuff can get tedious. Unless you really like to dig in pages and pages of data and information.
These audits are generally performed in Microsoft Excel, as it’s easier to do an analysis full with graphs and charts there. The end result, however, is usually summarized in a PowerPoint deck or a PDF report.
How long does it take?
It depends on your website. Results vary case-to-case because you have to factor in things like;
- How old is your website?
- How much content do you have?
- What are your business goals?
- What specific components do you need analyzed?
- How much is your budget?
Have you ever bought a bottle of whiskey? (duhh..) The rule is similar for the content audit: A cheap content audit isn’t good, and a good content audit isn’t cheap.
How does it affect your business?
A content audit is a part of 3 step long process;
- Audit – of the website content
- Analysis – of the gap between ‘where you are’ to ‘where you want to go’
- Strategy – creating solid content strategies to ‘get you there’
Since we so love using analogies, let’s use one here to understand what a content audit can do for you.
Say, you want to make lasagna – that’s your end goal.
So your first step will be to check the refrigerator (your website) and figure out what ingredients you already have (audit) or compile a list of stuff you’d need to get at the store (gap analysis).
Once you have all the ingredients, you follow the step-by-step recipe (content strategy), throw it all together, and <BOOM!> you have your lasagna (quantifiable business growth).
Just like the lasagna, if you follow the steps carefully to design a content strategy based on a systematic audit and analysis, you will get guaranteed positive results.