There’s an often used line in the internet marketing industry: Content is King. This means that the site that has the best content for its intended user base is going to earn the most rewards. Higher CTRs (Click Through Rates), revenue, goal conversions, and keyword rankings are all more likely with relevant content. While all websites are built to convey useful information to their users, a website doesn’t always meet user demand on the first go.
How can you tell if your website copy is truly relevant content for your users?
Check Your Site’s Organic Traffic
Why organic? When your website launched, Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools should have been set up to monitor the traffic coming in and its health on the Google search engine. A sitemap should have also been uploaded to Webmaster Tools. Your site slowly started to receive rankings once it was made live and, once the sitemap was indexed through Webmaster Tools, additional rankings and traffic are sure to follow. This list of keywords available in Webmaster Tools is what the search engine’s perceptions are of your website and what users find most relevant to your site.
To get this list, log into Google Webmaster Tools and check to see if you’re getting any impressions for keyword queries. This can be found under Search Traffic>Search Queries. The interface will look like this:
In the table under the chart, you’ll see the queries (or keywords) that were used to reach your website. Branded keywords will make up the majority of the keywords if your website is relatively new to the web. The keywords you should be the most concerned with are the non-branded keywords. What keywords are linked to your website? Are they related to your industry?
Check Your Site’s Social Shares
If you’re producing content that your target audience is interested in, they will share it on their social network and, if you’re lucky, they’ll link to your site on a forum, blog, or website. The two most common ways to check for these stats is by checking Google Analytics or MajesticSEO.
To check for Social Referrals, log in to Google Analytics and navigate to Acquisition>Social>Overview. You will land on this page:
As you can see, there is a list of social networks that have sent users to your site in the selected time frame. You can also click on the name of the network and you’ll be taken to a list of the landing pages where users clicked on through that social network.
To check for general backlinks, go to MajesticSEO and sign up for a free membership. As the free membership allows you to review only one website, you may consider signing up for a paid account if you own multiple sites. Once you have an account, enter your domain name into the search field and you will be able to view the backlinks, the referral domains, as well as the anchor text used to link to your website.
If your website is not well established then you will likely not be able to gather much information via the methods above. User testing is a way to get an honest and documented reaction to the website. These services provide targeted users access to your website in return for their opinion on the usability of your website. They will answer questions like “How easy is it to complete a transaction”, “Does this landing page make you want to buy something”, and other related questions. When the concern is content, though, be sure to ask questions like “Was this page useful to your daily life?” and “Did you learn something new?”
Now that you’ve gathered your data, what have you learned about your website?
Is it well shared and have a strong backlink profile? Does it ranking for keywords that are industry related, instead of brand related, and are the terms bringing in traffic to the site that is converting? If you did user testing, what was the general consensus? Was the site one the test users would use again in the future?
If the answers are no, then it’s time to reevaluate your website. Take a step back and look at the website objectively, from the customer’s viewpoint. This is the point where it is time to call in professional copywriters and SEO’s for site recommendations. If your site was designed by an agency that does not have content services, consider finding an agency that has content services as part of their SEO services or as a standalone service. Some of the methods of analysis they will use to evaluate your site are as follows:
Sometimes also known as a blog audit or a copy audit, a content audit consists of evaluating how the website’s content has performed over a predetermined range of time. It should include identifying the top visited pages and the top converting pages as well as notes about the voice, style, and tone used in relation to the website’s targeted audience. Other points that may be identified are which blog author’s posts are the most/least popular, webpage structure recommendations, and CTA (Call To Action) placement.
This method of research may be used if your website is getting good traffic but no conversions. A plugin is installed on the website to monitor user’s mouse trails and where they click on your website. An image is then generated in a thermal gun style, showing the click points as a bright color against a grayed out version of your webpage.
An auditor may undertake demographic research if the audience you are trying to target and the voice or tone on your website are disparate. It is possible that your niche may be in a slightly different demographic than you had originally intended. An auditor would perform this by viewing websites frequented by your target audience and comparing the content available on the example sites with what is currently on your site.
Once you have completed this research, the final step is to rewrite your content. I strongly recommend hiring a professional copywriter for these services unless you are in a narrow niche. While it may seem like a good idea for either you or an internal employee to write any new content that is needed, a copywriter would have a better grasp of how many words are needed on a page and which format would be best for the information being presented. This is especially true when large batches of copy, such as 25 pieces or more, need to be redone.
If you find yourself in this situation, don’t hesitate to contact Active Web Group. One of our Internet Marketing Specialists will review your website and compile an approach for getting relevant content onto your website. We are available at (800) 978-3417 or by filing out this form.