Website Content Management: 3-Step Approach

The first step in the quest to solve your content problem is admitting that there is one. If you’re reading this, congratulations – you’re one step closer to revenue boosting content.

But once you’ve recognized there’s a problem, how on earth do you go about fixing it? Where do you start, and how do you know when you’ve finished? Let’s answer the latter question first, though I’m not sure you’ll like it (my deepest apologies).

It’s not likely you’ll ever “finish” working on your content efforts; reviewing, analyzing, tweaking, and creating content are all tasks that will accompany you for the long haul. However, if you’re looking for a place to start, then you’re in luck.

While there may not be a definitive “end” to your content efforts, there are a few definitive steps you can take get things started.

Website Content Management: Fix your content

Step 1: Inventory & Website Content Audit

It’s impossible to fix your content without performing inventory and an audit.

You’ll note that I called out two specific processes (audit, inventory) as opposed to jumbling them into once concept. That’s intentional, and though they are often done in tandem, they are two separate things.

An inventory is a process that allows marketers to identify and cataloging all items that are included under the umbrella of content (site text, blog posts, documents, videos, images, etc). An audit takes the qualitative and makes it quantitative; in other words, the audit gathers all the metrics that you’ll need to determine if your content is working.

There are a variety of methods you can use to catalog and audit your content, and your end goal will determine exactly what numbers and information you should be looking at. For example, you may want to focus on a specific channel, campaign, etc.

That said, you’ll typically need to consider what I’m going to refer to as “SEO metrics,” meaning keyword counts/performance, links, search rankings, etc, as well as your “content marketing metrics,” which includes shares, likes, reach, etc.

Additionally, a healthy competitive analysis will round out your efforts and give you an idea of where you stand in your industry or niche.

A quick word of warning: this process is time consuming and labor intensive. Depending on the extent of your existing content and available manpower, it can take anywhere from a few days to a few months. Schedule wisely and have patience.

Step 2: Analyze

Once you complete your inventory and audit, it’s time to dive deep into your findings. This is the fun part (at least for you number-loving, analytic-minded, planners out there).

As part of this effort – as you may expect – you’ll need to really dig into the KPIs you collected during your audit and breathe life into them through analysis and interpretation.

When it comes to a content analysis, there is no definitive list of questions to ask or guidelines to follow. That said, every analysis should include the following questions:

  • What content is performing well (or not so well): To answer this question, turn to your basic analytics – visits, time-on-page, referral traffic, shares, likes, leads, etc. What channels are people using to access your content?
  • How does your content account for each step in the purchasing funnel? A thorough content analysis should identify any potential gaps or weaknesses that impede conversions. Identify where you lose the customer and if/how your current content plays a role in that loss.
  • How relevant is my content? Some content may escape the passage of time with little to no battle scars, but other content may start to get stale over time. If you’re nothing significant dips in content performance over time, then take that as a sign you need to reevaluate, refresh, or repurpose.
  • What keywords and terms and I ranking for (or not ranking for)? Content is the fuel that fires organic traffic, and your keyword performance will reveal a lot about the effectiveness of your current content.

Step 3: Plan, Set Goals & Take Action

At the completion of your analysis, you should have a clear idea of where your content is and where it needs to be; now you need to plan a logical way to get there. Looking at the stats is enough to tell you the current story, but a solid plan will empower you to make content decisions that tell the story you want to hear.

Fixing Your Existing website Content TipsFirst, determine what your goal is. Do you need drive more traffic? Engage more users? Are you losing customers at a specific spot in the sales funnel? Maybe your SEO efforts are hitting it home, but your brand is really struggling from a social aspect. Perhaps you simply need more content.

Your unique plan rests entirely on the issues you uncover and your long and short-term expectations. Regardless, as you start to draft your plan, consider the following:

Expectations

You can’t move forward unless you identify your expectation, and those expectations or goals should cover monthly, quarterly, and yearly progress

Increasing organic traffic by 25%, adding 1000 followers to your social media accounts, or growing referral traffic from your blog to your site over the course of a quarter are all examples of goals you may have.

It’s also important to incorporate benchmarks for comparison and assessment purposes.

Unique Channel Characteristics

Some channels, like social, may yield fairly quick results (i.e., a video that goes viral or a post that has little to no engagement). Conversely, results from an SEO campaign won’t be apparent overnight.

While planning, be sure to account for channel idiosyncrasies. Universal expectations can quickly send you or your marketing staff spiraling towards frustration.

Your Overall Content Needs

Your content needs will vary based on your goals and existing content. For example, the efforts required to optimize existing content will be different than those required to create and optimize a new blog. Likewise, PR efforts to scale your brand will be entirely different than either of the aforementioned.

Your needs will be based on the inventory/audit you performed, the current content trends in your industry, and (you know it’s coming…) your expectations.

Existing & Required Resources

If you already have a designated team of content marketers and writers to cater to your needs, that’s great! However, if you don’t, it’s time to evaluate your existing resources.

It’s easy to assume that marketing team members can take on the task, but keep in mind that today’s content should be top quality, and it’s often more efficient to call upon those that are well versed in content strategy and/or are classically trained to author and distribute your content.

As an added caveat, content creation and distribution isn’t a single effort relegated to a few weeks or months; it’s a long term process that will require significant, focused attention month after month.

If your content isn’t up to par, now’s the perfect time to do something about it. Getting started may seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Take the time to inventory and audit your content, analyze the results, and start planning your path forward. Still not sure where to start? Let us know – we know just the right people to take your content to the next level.