Before setting up a new website, you should perform an analytic page content audit on your previous one, as it will allow you to collect analytics data from the pages posted in the past and determine which ones work best.
Naturally, many pages won’t show good performance results. Some of them may even have to be removed. However, many more pages can still have useful information that you can collect and work on to make them more successful.
All in all, by reviewing site pages, you can effectively determine:
Such an audit requires a lot of work, so you may need to put together a team of three or four people. What’s more, you need to take an aggressive approach and look for the pieces of content with real SEO value that are worth migrating to the new site.
With that being said, let’s dive deeper into where exactly you need to look for this value and what needs to be changed.
How well a website ranks in the search results is determined by many factors. One of these is the quality and amount of backlinks your site has.
When it comes to search rankings, backlinks are an important fuel that drives your site’s success. In other words, the more quality backlinks your site has, the better it will perform. However, many of these links end up being useless because they connect your site to other sites that are of low quality or downright bad.
That’s precisely why backlinks are one of the most important things you need to check in a typical analytic page content audit. To do this, look at the profile of the backlinks on your site and see where they are going to. The backlinks you want to keep and migrate to new pages are the ones with positive brand mentions, social share, and third-party reviews. You should also keep the links to blog articles.
On the other hand, you should try to eliminate those backlinks that take your users to less trusted websites or other online resources. Still, even if a website seems bad now, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it was not trustworthy at first. Maybe it has simply lost quality over time.
Either way, you should know that less trusted websites could be incredibly damaging to your reputation in the eyes of Google. That’s because Google has been implementing drastic measures to prevent Black Hat SEO tactics that violate its Webmaster Guidelines. Google considers the Black Hat tactic of paying for links to rank higher in the search results very bad. As a result, the websites and pages using these tactics are extremely downgraded in the SERPs.
This has been the case since 2012, when Google launched the Penguin Algorithm, which was made to target and severely punish the sites using webspam and manipulative link-building practices.
Now that you know how detrimental bad backlinks can be, let’s explain how you can find them and subsequently remove them.
Pinpointing bad backlinks is easy because many tools — both paid and free ones — do this for you. These tools discover what sites are backlinking to you and whether they are trusted or spammy. The best and easiest free tool you can use for this is Google’s own Search Console (Google Webmaster Tools).
In the tool, you can view a list of websites that link back to your site. In most cases, the majority of these backlinks will help your SEO ranking, as they:
Unfortunately, there will also be some websites that harm your SEO, as they are not to be trusted. That’s why we want to encourage you to use the tool to find and remove bad backlinks.
Reviewing backlinks is crucial, but it’s just the beginning. If you dig further into the analytical information, you will also uncover some organic landing pages on your website. These pages might not offer much in terms of backlinks, but they are rank well every year organically.
Organic landing pages typically have two important things going for them:
Such pages are very important, so you need to review the analytics to find them and organize them by the length of sessions.
Impressions and clicks are pieces of data that can easily help you determine what to bring over to the new site as well. That’s why you need to pull all the information you have on them from the analytics.
However, if there are some poorly travelled pages that you still consider valuable, you can use them to develop a blog article or newsletter post in the future. That way, they could attract more clicks, which would increase their value.
If there are some pages on your existing website that rank for relevant keywords in the top 100 positions, you need to consider bringing them along to the new website as well. This may not seem too important to you now, but we still advise you to do it, as these pages might turn out to be quite helpful. At the very least, you can use their relevant ranking keywords and add them to the redirects list. This way, you’ll get to monitor keyword fluctuations once the migration has been finished.
These are the most important factors you need to consider in your analytic page content audit. If you want to learn more, feel free to reach out. We can help you perform a comprehensive and all-encompassing analytic page content audit and improve your overall brand’s image online.