What’s the best way to optimize underperforming content?
Google’s search algorithm keeps evolving with new updates aimed at weeding out content that does not offer value to searchers. That’s why it is essential for you as a marketer to ensure that your content engages audiences, builds brand authority, and generates returns.
But that’s not all:
You also need a content marketing plan to boost your search visibility. At the same time, you should remember that not all of your content will deliver as expected.
But that’s not the real problem.
The real problem will arise if you don’t do anything about your underperforming content.
How can you improve your existing content so that it offers value to your audience and ranks well in search results?
Find out below.
But before we get into that, let’s learn how to find out which of your content pieces need optimization.
How can you identify content that needs optimization?
Before you can improve your content, it’s essential that you conduct a thorough website content audit.
You can use analytical tools such as Google Analytics and SEMrush to get valuable insights into how well your content is performing.
You can collect data about:
- Time spent on site
- Bounce rate
- Click-through rates
- Number of inbound links
- Referring domains
- Social shares
Armed with this information, you can easily identify content that has:
- Poor organic traffic
- Poor or no conversions
- High bounce rates
- Little time spent on page
- Outdated information
- Duplicate content
- No backlinks or spammy links
Once you’ve identified underperforming content on your site, it’s time to learn how to optimize it for better performance.
How can you optimize underperforming content?
To improve underperforming content, you need to optimize it and convert it into useful and relevant content. You should also optimize it for the search engines to ensure that it generates high-quality traffic, leads, and conversions.
Here is how to start improving your underperforming content:
1. Upgrade old content
You should start by analyzing the quality of your content and then enhancing it further.
- Find high-traffic keywords: Find relevant keywords that can help you rank for searches related to the topic and incorporate them into your article. However, do not overuse keywords.
- Update your tags: Use relevant keywords in your title, meta description, and heading. Make them intriguing and catchy too.
- Incorporate long-tail keywords: Doing this can increase the chances of your article to rank for voice searches.
- Link to fresh, updated resources: If your article includes statistics that are more than two years old, you should replace them with recent statistics from trustworthy sources.
- Add internal links: Link to other relevant content pieces on your website.
- Fix broken links: Update or remove any broken links.
- Match search intent: Adjust your existing content so that it aligns with the search intent of users. It should provide the information and solutions that your target audience is interested in.
- Add visuals: Add screenshots of recent statistics or relevant videos to increase engagement.
- Increase engagement opportunities: Include compelling calls-to-action (CTAs) in your post, embed tweets, and include social media share buttons to boost user engagement.
While updating your content, you may also find a few articles where you will need to rewrite more than just some sections. In this case, you can also consider rewriting the whole post and publishing it as a new article.
However, you should take the time to write an article that offers real value to your readers. Research the topic thoroughly, provide actionable advice, and include recent statistics and real-life examples.
In short, ensure that it is the most robust resource on the given topic on the web.
Then, inform your audience about its existence by promoting it through various channels and platforms.
2. Improve content quality and relevance
How do you improve the quality of your content?
Start by identifying and updating duplicate content with well-written content. Remove any links that linked to duplicate content.
You should then look for opportunities to combine content pieces that cover the same topic or fall under one broad topic.
You should go through the top articles that rank for your target keywords to find out:
- What information is missing from your article?
- Where does your content quality lack?
- Which related keywords does the article rank for?
- Does the top-performing article include new insights or industry updates on the topic?
- Does the article answer searchers’ questions more efficiently than your content?
Another option is to use content discovery and curation tools to understand what kind of content people currently find interesting about the topic.
You can then conduct in-depth research into the topic and incorporate useful points into your posts to boost engagement.
Once you’ve collected enough information about the topic, you can decide whether to write one in-depth article that covers the topic completely or create content clusters.
3. Resolve technical issues
You may write great content and optimize it with high-traffic keywords. But you may still fail to rank higher in the search engines or find it difficult to keep readers engaged.
Because your website architecture might be derailing your progress.
To find out if your site is optimized properly for users and the search engines, you should quickly audit your site for technical SEO and fix issues like:
- Crawling problems: Ensure that Google bots can crawl the page. You should also remove duplicate content, fix redirects, and add your blog posts to the sitemap.
- Site speed: Test your site speed and fix any issues to reduce the bounce rate.
- Title and URL: Ensure that you’ve included the target keyword in your title and URL. If not, you should update the old URL and apply a 301 redirect to the updated URL to avoid 404 errors.
- Meta description: Include the keyword phrases you are targeting in the meta description to encourage the search engines to rank you higher and entice searchers to click on your article.
- Content: Make it easy for your readers to skim through your content and find sections they want to read about using a table of contents.
You should also improve readability by writing short sentences and paragraphs. Always divide large chunks of content into meaningful headings, paragraphs, and bullet points.
Ready to optimize your underperforming content?
Ultimately, an effective content marketing strategy is not only about creating new content. It’s also about improving the quality of old, existing content to ensure that it is relevant and up-to-date.
Though finding and optimizing underperforming content may seem challenging, it’s worth it. In fact, enriching your existing content can offer you the most significant gains.
Have you considered optimizing the underperforming content on your site? If not, start today.
If you have other questions, ask them in the comments below. I’ll be happy to help.