How to Detect and Improve Underperforming Content
Is your content doing everything it needs to do to bolster your brand online? You might think you’re creating great content, engaging with your audiences, and generating shareable posts, but what do the numbers say?
What Exactly is Underperforming Content, Anyway?
Before you can fix the problem, you have to know what it is. Basically, underperforming content is content that isn’t gathering momentum, growth, or mobility, no matter how long it’s been up or how much effort you invested in it. Quality content drives traffic to your site, improves your brand’s visibility online, and increases conversions. However, if it’s not up to par, it may not be doing any of these things enough to make a difference. In other words, you may not be achieving a positive ROI from your efforts.
How to Identify Underperforming Content
Underperforming content can really be broken down into one of three main categories:
- Content that used to perform well but doesn’t anymore. You might have had several blogs that were once popular and drove traffic and sales, but for some reason, they’ve dropped in both ranking and visits. This type of content can often be upgraded and revamped to drive new life into it.
- Content that never performed well. In this instance, some pieces never had much potential from the start and didn’t even get off the ground. Perhaps you’re writing about obsolete topics that no one searches for anymore, or maybe the content is filled with outdated tech or tactics that have aged out. It would be best to remove this content from your site and redirect any links it may have acquired over time to pages with more potential.
- Content that hasn’t been successful but has potential. This content often just needs to be spruced up a bit to work well. To see if your content falls into this category, keep an eye on page views, time on the pages, keywords your pages rank for, social shares, backlinks, and organic visits. Each of these metrics can help you understand if your content has potential and just needs to be tweaked to get better results.
What Causes Outdated Content to Start Underperforming?
Data will really help you understand the answer to this question. When you’re armed with the numbers, you might realize:
Your Content is Outdated
Search engines seek out fresh, new information, and so do the searchers who are using these search engines! If your post was last updated many years ago, you might be able to update it with fresh information and numbers to make it relevant for today’s audience.
A Competitor Publishes Better Content
There are a lot of words on the web right now. If a competitor is publishing similar — but more quality — content, the search engines and online audiences may favor that company’s information.
You’re Using Incorrect Keyword Choices
Keywords are essential, but like most other things in life, their relevance can change over time. If you’ve tried to rank your post for a specific keyword set previously and succeeded, you could still find yourself facing high bounce rates down the road because keywords are an ever-changing part of digital marketing. Poor keyword choices can cause visitors (and the search engines) to miss the point of your posts or have a hard time finding the information they’re looking for. Your Search Console and Google Analytics can help you understand what you’re ranking for and which keywords bring you the most traffic.
If you need help getting your content up and running the way it’s supposed to, consider working with a digital marketing agency that specializes in online content creation and optimization.