Posted at Oct 11, 2021 10:15:56 AM by Nicholas LeTourneau | Share
The minute someone says the words “content audit” it is usually immediately followed by a large groan. Truth be told, conducting regular content audits is probably the easiest thing you can do to improve the organic traffic to your website.
Think of content audits as cleaning your house. The longer you let it go and the more things pile up, the longer it’ll take to get clean and the more work it’ll be.
Whereas if you just kept doing small chores the whole time and put effort into maintaining your home, you wouldn’t need to spend the whole weekend doing a deep clean before your in-laws come over for the holidays.
The longer you let your content go without updating it, when you finally do need to run an audit or need to find new sources of traffic to your website, it will be a daunting task that will seem insurmountable.
If you just spent a little time each month updating your content and keeping things fresh, you’d be rewarded with the passive organic traffic that your website and business have been looking for all along.
Let’s take a deeper dive into why regular content audits matter for your website.
Why Regular Content Audits Matter
Static, Outdated Content Doesn’t Perform Well
When was the last time you did a Google search? Chances are whenever you search for any query, you'll typically see on the first page results that have been written or updated within the last two years.
But what happens to the hundreds of thousands of pages that were created and ranked well when published but never updated? Are those pages worthless now? If you don’t update existing content, they might as well be.
If you are a business that has been maintaining an online presence for several years, chances are you have a treasure trove of unused slightly outdated content that is just waiting to become valuable again to your website.
In fact, one of the easiest ways to increase your website’s click-through rate is by giving it a fast refresh. Updating things like dates, locations, and adding a few targeted keywords can double your traffic in some cases.
Showing Google’s crawlers that you are an active site will yield results. Google never tips its hand towards what is in the algorithm but research has shown that simply saving a new version, adding a new date, or making small updates to existing content will be rewarded with higher positioning in search engines.
Allows You to Maximize the Content You’ve Already Produced
You’ve sunk a lot of work and time into the content you’ve created, so why not squeeze it for everything it can be worth? Maybe back when you first published the page, SEO best practices were considerably different or something on the topic has changed in the last few years and needs to be updated.
Just because one section is a little outdated doesn’t mean you need to create something new from scratch! All you need to do is update the existing page with the new information and publish the new version. With the new updates that Google is making to its algorithm and the introduction of things like Passage Rankings, updating your content has never been more valuable.
The best part about auditing your existing content to maximize its value? It is one of the easiest and least time-consuming things you can do to improve your website immediately. You’re not going through the research, drafting, and writing process of creating something from scratch.
Updating a page can take as little as one minute and has instant value for the next time Google crawls your site. Having everything organized and laid out through regular content audits is the best way to improve organic rankings immediately.
Lets You Easily Identify Where You Can Improve
Having a plan of action is always better than just randomly making updates to pages. Making changes or updates to pages that are already performing well could lead to messing up whatever Google is loving about the page and doesn’t help you get value from what you are missing out on.
There isn’t too much point in sinking a lot of time and effort into a page that is already performing at its highest because there isn’t much more you can do to make it rank higher than it already is. Knowing what pages to update, what updates to make, and what is/isn’t performing for your website is the fastest way to turn your traffic from a bummer into a front-runner.
Having a well-laid out plan based on important key performance indicators and content audits gives you the ability to put everything into perspective and see exactly what needs improving and what can be left alone too.