Website Audit Checklists:

The Definitive Guide

by Ian Cleary

Content Audit Checklist

The following chapter is about the Content Audit Checklist which is part of the full Website Audit Checklist definitive guide.

Content Audit

If you have content on your website that is not helping you market your business, what is it doing on your website?

And if you have educational content designed to attract audiences at an early stage of the customer journey, you want to make sure you are sharing valuable insight.

Mark Schaefer

The most important characteristic of content marketing today is not quality or quantity. It’s insight. And that is the differentiator lacking almost everywhere.

Mark Schaefer, The Content Code: Six essential strategies to ignite your content, your marketing, and your business

As part of the other audits we would have already audited a lot of the website content. For example:

But this audit is specifically related to content that we use to market our products and services  For example:

  • Webinars
  • Podcasts
  • Blog content
  • Guides

What content produces the best results?

You want to figure out what content works and doesn’t work for your business.

For example:

  • Check analytics to see what content drives the most enquiries/email subscribers
  • Which content drives you sales (or assists in selling)?
  • What type of content gets shared the most across social channels?
  • What content categories work best for you?
  • Which content gets the most traffic?

Is the content useful and informative?

If your content doesn’t provide sufficient value to its intended audience, it won’t generate shares, links or organic traffic.

We’ve become so obsessed with rankings and writing in a way that pleases the search engines that we sometimes forget that the best ‘optimisation’ technique is to write for our target reader.

Addressing your audience’s pain points, empathizing with their issue and offering a solution, demonstrating expertise that can help them make an important decision etc. All of these are examples of how to infuse value into your content.

Is the content unique?

This may be one of the most difficult things to achieve when it comes to creating content.

There’s so much content online on just about any topic you can think of, so keeping it original isn’t always going to be easy.

However, giving your content that personal touch, a unique point of view, or adding other factors of differentiation (unique-style illustrations, visually presented data that supports you claims, etc.) will help you raise above the noise.

Is there a good distribution of awareness, consideration and conversion content?

Your blog attracts visitors at various stages of the buyer’s journey and you need to make sure your content supports their needs at every stage.

Here’s an explanation of each of the stages and the type of content you’re expected to have:

Content for the Buyers Journey

We’ll evaluate your content and identify any gaps. If you don’t have content for each stage of the buyer’s journey, you’re losing out on potential sales.

Is the content optimised for SEO?

There’s no point in publishing amazing content if it’s not properly optimised for SEO.

Screaming Frog is a useful tool to analyzing your content. In the following example, we are analyzing blog content for missing alt tags in images.

Which content produces the best backlinks?

When you get backlinks to content from relevant websites, this helps increase the authority of that page but also helps increase the authority of the whole website.

Even if a piece of content isn’t driving subscriptions/leads, if it’s generating a lot of high authority links, then it’s adding value.


If you generate a lot of links to your blog content you can then link this content to your product/service pages so this content starts to rank. Websites don’t link to product/service pages a lot so this is one way around this.

What type of content is being shared?

If your blog content delivers value to the readers they’re going to share it.

As part of the audit, we want to find out what type of content is shared the most, where it is shared, and how often it is shared.

If your content is not shared enough on the platforms where your target audience spends their time, then we need to do some investigation. For example:

  • Is content quality not good enough?
  • Is it targeted at the wrong audience?
  • Does the website make it difficult to share content?

What is the structure of the blog content?

A blog post needs to follow a specific structure to get people to read, engage and take action on it.  We have a checklist of items to go through.  Good blog content will use a combination of the following:

  • Bullet points
  • Short paragraphs
  • Uses bold, italic to create tone
  • Uses copywriting techniques
  • Images/video to break up the content.

Is there an option to move readers to the next stage of the buyer’s journey?

When someone reads a ‘how to’ post, do you give them an option to get help implementing the solution?

If they are reading about how to solve an issue that your product can solve, can they sign up for a free trial at the end of the post?

Or in this example Optinmonster provide a lead gen guy (also known as ethical bribe!!!!) to move a reader to being a subsriber.

Every piece of content on the website needs to have a ‘What’s next’ on the page.  A very clear call to action that moves people along the buyer’s journey.

Does the content have the correct spelling and grammar?

Poorly written content may lower your credibility, distract readers, and even affect prospects’ decision to do business with your company.

Having an odd spelling mistake here or there certainly won’t hurt your business.

I should know, my grammar is not perfect!!!

But… if your content is really poorly written with lots of grammar and spelling mistakes this will send a negative message about your business.

What is the quality of the product/service descriptions?

For any product/service (ecommerce/non ecommerce) it is important to have good product descriptions.

You should keep one eye on writing great descriptions for your potential buyers and the other one on making content relevant for the search engines.

What’s the average word count for blog content?

{We need to check with GionPer why tables are not shown in preview}

Less than 500 words> 500 < 750> 750
Your word count is quite low.  Although Google doesn’t reward you based on word count you are more likely to get links to more comprehensive content, meaning you have a better chance of ranking. We’d highly recommend you to revisit the low word count content that is driving traffic and add more content to it.Your word count is ok but ideally your average should be above 750 words. Find the content with the lowest word count and delete it (if it does not have any traffic or links) or add more content on.Your average content is longer than 750 words which is quite good. Look for the content that has a low word count and either delete it (if it has no links or traffic) or add more content to increase your average word count.

What content can be removed/merged or redirected?

We tackle this as part of the SEO audit but it’s worth mentioning here.

If you have poor quality content that is driving no conversions, traffic (or very little traffic) and it has no links, this is prime content for deletion.

If you have content that is driving no traffic or conversions but has links from high-quality websites you should redirect it so you don’t lose link value.

If you have 2 pieces of content that bring value to your audience but don’t drive as much traffic or conversions as they should, try combining them into one comprehensive article.

If you have 1 piece of content that is driving good traffic and conversions but is not ranking high enough on Google, you could improve this content with new information, quality imagery, research data, etc. and move it up the ranking.

It’s all about evaluating as much content as possible and making a decision on each piece of content based on a number of factors.

Your content evaluation spreadsheet could include:

  • Content title
  • Shares
  • Keywords ranking
  • Conversions
  • Traffic
  • Bounce rate
  • Type of content
  • Word count
  • Publish date

Are there any content gaps?

We perform a content gap analysis to discover if your website/blog lacks content that you should be covering.

For example:

  • Topics your competitors are covering
  • Content that would help convince people to buy
  • Keywords you should be targeting but you’re currently not.

What content has the highest/lowest bounce rate?

If people are engaging in ‘what’s next’ (e.g. clicking on the CTA associated with a blog post) for some pieces of content and not for others we want to know which content is performing and which isn’t and why.

It is normal that a blog has a high bounce rate but it can’t be too high.

Each post needs strong encouragement for readers to take action and that typically involves viewing other pages on the website.

Does the content satisfy user intent?

When you search for Las Vegas are you searching for the movie called ‘Las Vegas’ or are you thinking of a trip to Las Vegas?

When you look at the search results Google will show you what it thinks you want!

You want to swim with the tide not against it. In simple terms, you need to incorporate search intent or user intent into your content.

When someone’s performing a search, they may be:

  • Looking for more information (informational search)
  • Searching for a specific website
  • Interested to make a purchase (transactional search)

Your content needs to cater to both transactional queries and informational queries.

Is there sufficient evergreen content?

Evergreen content is content that never gets old.

It explores a topic that’s always relevant to your target audience(s) so you won’t see any traffic drops over time.

This is your most valuable content because it requires only minor changes (or no updates at all) over time and it continues to drive organic traffic to your website.

Which guest authors produce the best results?

If you have guest authors on your blog you want to see who is producing the best results and why.

You may want the best ones to write more guest blogs for you and/or learn from them.

Buzzsumo will automatically do this analysis for you! It breaks the following down by author.