This edition of the #serpstat chat will explore the issues of content, competition, and content strategy. here is our review of a recent conversation with Jeremy.
https://twitter.com/i/spaces/1gqGvyDllwaKB?s=20 Here’s a Twitter space audio of Jeremy explaining the importance of reducing the keyword gap.
What’s the value (and how often) should you do a content analysis/audit?
a1. Understanding what parts of your site’s content are actually pulling their weight, and what content is really low quality or not performing in search results is a cornerstone of establishing your future content plans.
This should be at a minimum something of annual event, but it’s really more of kicking off an active, ongoing strategy. Part of the process is making an actual content plan, which means you’re transitioning to a more active view of your content strategy, so saying “every quarter” doesn’t really make sense.Jeremy Rivera
A1: Value is in what you learn from an audit, based on current conditions and the expectations of previous campaigns & directives. I am auditing when the algorithms change. The Helpful Content Update is a recent example. I like to schedule refresh audits yearly.Boyd Lake SEO
A1 – it shows what’s working, what needs extra work, what’s not working and what will work. As often as as possible. And more so, before creating any content strategy. Also, to monitor your campaigns.Saheed Hassan
What metrics, standard items/issues, and data can you use to determine if your content is performing (or NOT performing)?
A2. #serpstat_chat At a minimum you need one of the three following: Google Search console data, Google Analytics or a 3rd party SEO tool – ahrefs, semrush, mangools, serpstat, seoclarity etc.I personally think that the most valuable insight CAN be found in Google Analytics. Look at Reverse Goal Paths under Conversions, , Look at “Content Drilldown” to see what categories/folders perform best, look at “Navigation Summary” to see where users went AFTER reading your BEST posts.
Ultimately, you need to decide what is “success” for your content. (And that looks different for different TYPES of content). I wouldn’t apply the same standard for my “service” pages that I would for my blog/articles/published content. This is PART of the audit. Make sure you’ve got GOALS and CONVERSIONS configured, and not just “what ranking/keywords” did I captureJeremy Rivera
A2 For blog posts: – traffic by channel – time spent on page – bounce rate – conversions (subscriptions, registrations) For socials: – impressions – mentions – interactionsOlena Prokhoda
a2. Is it visibly ranking for targeted topics? Are customers engaging in a way that indicates the content is relevant to that target topic?Marianne Sweeny
How do you discover competitors to consider when starting your keyword gap analysis process? *and what is a “gap” analysis anyways?
A3. #serpstat_chat If you’re an agency or consultant, then ask your client! If you’re in-house, or a small biz owner, then you should be looking at sales calls, support chats and figure out who you’re competing with DIRECTLY.
But keep in mind that in SEO, you’re not just competing with 1 or two DIRECT competitors, you are fighting for visiblity in search results which COULD include content from indirect compettiors, publishers or just enthusiasts.
Tools like aHrefs, SEMrush and SERPstat will help identify POTENTIAL search competitors, based on WHAT YOU RANK FOR NOW. But that’s obviously FLAWED, if you’re NOT ranking for great keywords! You need to look at terms where you WANT to rank and get traffic, and see WHO is ranking THERE.Jeremy Rivera
A3 I just use
@serpstat in 2 steps: 1. Discover our direct competitors https://bit.ly/DiscoverCompetitors… 2. Then find unique keywords of our competitor we might have missed https://bit.ly/FindKeywordsYouMissed…Olena Prokhoda
a3. After pulling the rank landscape, I look for reasonable competitors (Wikipedia is not a reasonable competitor) that rank on page 1 for the high-value/high-volume topics.Marianne Sweeny
What’s a reasonable process to find the gold, and avoid committing to wasteful rabbit holes/keywords where you will never rank (or ranking would be useless)
A4. #serpstat_chat Arm yourself with industry knowledge, or work with a subject matter expert! Look over chat logs, support emails, talk to customers and sales people to better understand the product/service or include a “feedback” cycle in your research to get clients to “score” The best thing you can do is try to group together these ideas into groups, and think of a headline/title that could encompass those ideas together. Those keywords then can become your outline or h2s!Jeremy Rivera
A4: Always think about search intent. If you don’t match the users search intent you could be writing something around a keyword that makes no since. Get into the mindset of your ideal reader. Pick keywords based on trying to get your ideal readers.Joey Trend
a4. IMHO the giant list of keywords days are gone. Existing content rank data provides a landscape of opportunities for internal links from high visbility pages, onpage optimization for those close and a content strategy with content strategists for the rest.Marianne Sweeny
How do know if you need to remove and 301 redirect content, if you should re-write the article, combine it with another post, or spin-off one post into several?
You should only pull a truly rotten tooth and leave a 404 or ideally a 410 code behind. ALWAYS redirect any “removed” content if possible. Either it was a one-off, never recurring event, is expired information or out of date and won’t be updated, or is a hacked/malware infected page. “Does this post meet fulfill the intent of the search”
If you know generally what the post is SUPPOSED to rank for, then ask yourself if it would fulfil your need for information. If it doesn’t, do you have a better piece already? Redirect. Can it be improved to meet the intent? Rewrite. Does it ramble? Spin-off into multiple-posts.
A5 I look at how customers are finding the page, what they do when they get there and where they go with they leave. These are all great data points for finding out if the contact is still workingMarianne Sweeny
A5: Combine? This one is difficult. But it would have to do more with improving readability through combining both articles. Improving readability has the natural effect of improving content optimizatioon.Sweepsify
A5. #serpstat_chat Deciding how to approach a topic comes from how much you can get out of it. Each piece should bring something fresh—new info or a new angle. If not enough “meat” for that, combine/redirect/optimize content vs spewing the same stuff over againCopyPress
What role does link building and/or subject matter expertise play in determining your post-analysis content strategy?
Q6 #serpstat_chat It’s often about what is MISSING from a keyword list, that leads to the MOST valuable content. Show a subject matter expert your list of keywords, and findout the gaps in your gap analysis! There’s GOLD in connecting your research to experts in the field!
It’s also useful to use 3rd party tools to look at how many referring domains any particular competitor post has links from, and the overall authority level of your competitors. Are you David or are you Goliath?Jeremy Rivera
A6 Google has recently been clear about the diminishing importance of links for position in search results. Much better to socialize across channels and earn links organic.Marianne Sweeny
A6. #serpstat_chat SMEs bring a lot to the table—the authority you can build with your content (and for your brand) is two-fold when audiences can connect your messages to the people who deliver and promote them. And google loves that high-quality, authoritative contentCopyPress
That’s it for now; please let me know if you have any more thoughts in the comments area, here are some related resources:
- Read my ebook on content analysis:
- Watch the recap of my content analysis webinar with Search Engine Journal:
- Use @copypress ‘s Content Analysis tool for your own keyword gap analysis