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How to conduct a content gap analysis for SEO

Consistency plays a key role in any high-performing content marketing campaign. If you haven’t noticed an increase in engagement or search engine performance for some time – we recommend doing a content gap analysis to work out your next best steps.

A content gap analysis is a smart way of spotting any missed opportunities in your content and SEO strategy. It’s a way of helping you develop strategic content ideas that will bring you more traffic, conversions and generally long-lasting results. 

So, how can you do an effective content gap analysis to boost your SEO performance?

What is a content gap analysis?

A content gap analysis is the process of looking for any opportunities and missing pieces in your existing content. That involves spotting any gaps that you could use to target customers at various stages of the buyer’s journey:

  • Top of the funnel (TOFU) –
  • Middle of the funnel (MOFU)
  • Bottom of the funnel (BOFU)

A content gap analysis will generally include an audit of your:

  • Blogs
  • Webpages
  • Social media
  • Landing pages
  • Ebooks 
  • Any other content assets 

When analysing your content, you’ll likely also find new keyword opportunities that you could be taking advantage of.

How to look for gaps in your content

A content gap analysis is more than just looking through your blogs or articles and thinking of new ideas. It’s about focusing on what you can do to boost your SEO and connect with your target audience on a larger scale. 

Spotting opportunity for buyer-centric content

Not every visitor will be ready to make a purchase when visiting your site.  For example, a user might be looking for information or simply weighing out their options.

The buyer’s journey refers to the different stages that a user can be at when interacting with your business. As a content marketer, you should be producing content that will appeal to a specific stage of the cycle (TOFU, MOFU or BOFU):

Stages of the marketing funnel (Top, middle, bottom)
Digital Marketing Funnel

Many brands will focus on creating long-form content that is designed to answer common search queries. This is good, but it’s also important to fill in the gaps where users may be looking for something else. What steps will your target audience need to go through to get from A to B?

To stop these users falling through the cracks, you’ll have to look at making buyer-centric content as follows:

Identify any gaps, for example; you may need to add a ‘thank you’ page to target visitors after they’ve purchased. Read more on how to do this here.

Do your market research

If something is missing in your content campaign – then chances are your target audience will spot it. One of the easiest and most effective ways of aligning your content with your target buyer is by asking them.

Things like surveys, reviews and questionnaires are examples of how you can uncover some of your audience’s questions, pain points or interests. Use this feedback to optimise your content strategy and fill in those gaps. We’ve listed a few example questions below:

  • What do you look for in a product?
  • How did you find our brand? (social media, Google etc.)
  • What else would you like to know about our brand?
  • How did you get on with this product?

You can use these responses to tailor any future content towards your customer needs and spark relevant topic ideas.

Conduct a competitor analysis

You can often work out what’s missing on your site by looking at what your brand competitors are doing online. Analyse Google first page or known competitors in your industry and think about the following:

  • How often do they post new content?
  • Is their content user-friendly and easy to read?
  • Is there content directing users from one stage to another?
  • Are there various content types on the site (FAQ pages, how-to guides, eBooks etc.)?

The primary purpose of competitor research is to spot any cracks in your content strategy. We also suggest using an SEO tool like SEMrush or SurferSEO to find the keywords that other businesses in your industry are ranking for.

Targeting the keywords your competitors rank for within high-quality, buyer-centric content can improve your position on search engines.

Audit your on-site content

Your site’s content needs to align with the buyer’s journey to ensure you’re reaching out to different types of customers. When doing a content audit, you should be looking out for both content quality and SEO.

Examples of SEO:

  • Keywords
  • Wordcount 
  • Number of links
  • Quality of meta description 
  • Image optimisation
  • Call to actions

 And content quality:

  • Content length
  • Visitor metrics
  • Social shares
  • Comments and ‘likes’
  • Use of passive and active voice

All of the above can contribute to better content. By conducting an audit, you’ll be able to determine what is missing and how you can go about changing that. For example, are you not getting enough social shares? If so, you could aim to create more visual, scannable content that tends to perform better on socials.

Another example, let’s say your CTA is ‘buy now’, and you’re not driving enough conversions. You likely need to alter this to target users who aren’t ready to purchase yet but want to find out more.

Knowing where to look for gaps

The key to a successful content gap analysis is focusing on all areas of your campaigns. Many digital marketers focus on ‘money’ pages to push sales and revenue. 

While this makes sense, it’s just as important to work on the surrounding content like blogs and social media posts. Without these, it’s difficult to build connections with potential customers. The key is to fill in any gaps throughout the buyer’s journey that lead towards the point of purchase.

A thorough content gap analysis for SEO can drastically boost the results you see from your SEO & content marketing campaigns. If you have any more questions or need some help with your online content, feel free to get in touch. 

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