You built an efficient and attractive website that has served your insurance brand well for several years. It is the foundation of your digital marketing plan, and you’ve filled it with engaging and informative content. But lately you’ve noticed your SEO rankings slipping a bit and you’re not attracting as many new visitors each month. It could be time for a content audit to freshen things up, identify gaps and new content needs, and realign your content with your current product offerings.
WHAT IS A WEB CONTENT AUDIT?
A web content audit is a systematic analysis of each page of your website, assessing strengths and weaknesses of your content strategy and using that information to inform your content development workflow. It’s a one-by-one review of your web assets to gauge their accuracy, style, and timeliness. The results of a content audit are incorporated into your content strategy and direct what content needs to be rewritten, updated, deleted, or newly created.
Don’t confuse a web content audit with a web accessibility audit (WCAG). They sound similar but are very different. A WCAG audit is focused on the user experience for your website visitors with disabilities. You should conduct a WCAG audit periodically, but we’ll explain that in next month’s blog post. For now, let’s just concentrate on content to improve your content marketing results.
BENEFITS OF A WEB CONTENT AUDIT
A web content audit can be a big project that you’ll want to plan and delegate resources for in advance. However, it is a necessary undertaking that can provide many benefits, like these:
- Save Money: You don’t necessarily need a brand-new website to increase engagement and SEO ranking. Instead, a web content audit can actually save you money by uncovering ways you can repurpose some of your existing content. Simply rearranging some of your more engaging pieces, especially those with greater SEO value, can more cost-efficiently give your website a new feel.
- Improve User Engagement: Your audit can help you revise your content strategy for better audience engagement by showing you what types of content are valuable to your audience. For example, your audit may show that videos get great viewer traction and that your content around a certain product offering is mostly blog posts and no videos. You can then prioritize video content development around that product.
- Boost SEO: A web content review gives you a chance to improve your website’s visibility by identifying low-performing content. You can then carefully review that content to ensure its page title, meta title, and description are all updated and that the content is optimized for relevant keywords. While you are fixing those issues, also add some internal links and be sure to correct any old or outdated information.
- ID Easy-to-Fix Issues: Your content audit can pinpoint the small but important issues like broken links, forms, and images, 404 errors, and duplicate content that can negatively impact your SEO rankings and conversion rates.
- Realign With Business Objectives: As you grow your insurance brand, your objectives change over time. Depending on the season or the economic climate, you may emphasize different products, expand your coverage area, or develop new offerings. For example, when you built your insurance website, cybersecurity insurance was likely not as important as it is today. A content audit will help identify gaps between your existing content and your current business objectives to help you realign.
These benefits of a web content audit can improve the value of your website by increasing the overall marketing results for your insurance brand. A content audit can also save you money by prolonging the effective use of your current website and delaying the need for a complete rebuild.
CONTENT AUDIT DECISIONS
A website content audit will assess your website content, but then you need to make decisions about how to act on the assessment to get the desired benefits for your insurance company. Use the data from your audit and sort your content into four categories:
- Remove: Some content is too old or underperforming to bother with. It may be inaccurate or superfluous and should be removed from your website. Remember to check that content first, however, to ensure it isn’t backlinked elsewhere on your site.
- Retain: Evergreen content that is well written can sometimes stand the test of time. If it’s still good, keep it.
- Revise: Some pieces of content might be good, but you can make them better.
- Reinforce: Some content just doesn’t get enough attention, but in general it does support your brand messaging. Piecing these bits together with others and mixing in some new data can result in new, high-value content.
Sorting everything into just these four categories will help you keep the process simple. The first two categories – remove and retain – will be the easiest to deal with. Once those categories are tackled, you can focus on revising and reinforcing content that will support your marketing strategy.
TURN AUDIT TO ACTION
The only way to get any value from your website content audit is to execute an efficient action plan. The audit itself is only an assessment of your website. You have to take action to make changes and improve things. Make a plan to use the data from your web content audit to wring more value out of your old website.
Begin your action plan by comparing your audit results to your business goals. Prioritize your actions based on what is most important to your business. For example, if you want to grow your insurance brand with small business owners, work on the small business section of your website first. You may want to feature certain products with enhanced content, like infographics or videos.
By using your business goals as a guide for improving your website based on the content audit, you can get the most out of the changes you make. Start with changes that are quick and inexpensive and can make a big difference. These edits can include taking existing content from attached PDFs and incorporating it into main website pages. Search your social media accounts and other repositories of original content for existing pieces to fill the gaps on your website. Some of your best content might not be on your website, but you should move it there.
Leave the more in-depth website content changes for last. Developing new content or new assets to enhance existing content will require more resources and planning. Adjust your content development strategy to include the new items identified by your web content audit, and plan to complete these last pieces by the end of your next development cycle.
Content marketing is a strategic approach designed to retain your audience and drive customer engagement. Make the most of your marketing strategy by conducting a content audit periodically. If you’re not sure how to perform a content audit or how to prioritize your resulting action plan, contact LIGHTSTREAM. We’ve helped several organizations through the web content audit process, and we’d be happy to leverage that experience for the benefit of your insurance brand.