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Conduct a Page Analysis: Deciding When to Update, Rewrite, or Remove Content — A Tool-Driven, Step-by-Step Guide

Understanding when to update, rewrite, or remove content is a science, not just an art. Armed with the right tools, you can make data-backed decisions that can dramatically impact your site’s performance. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process, tool by tool, step by step.

1. Evaluate Your Analytics: Google Analytics 4 As Your Starting Point

The transition to Google Analytics 4 (GA4) brings a new set of metrics and ways to evaluate your content’s performance, making it essential to understand how to utilize them effectively.

Action Steps:

  1. Log into Google Analytics 4: Once logged in, navigate to the property where your website data is stored.
  2. Metrics to Consider in GA4: Instead of ‘pageviews,’ GA4 uses ‘page engagement,’ which combines page scrolls, clicks, and other interactions. Similarly, ‘engaged sessions per user’ is a new metric that indicates user engagement level.
  3. Analyze User Behavior: GA4 offers ‘Events’ that track specific user interactions like button clicks or form submissions.
  4. Identify Problem Areas: Use the ‘Explorations’ tab for advanced analyses to spot declining trends or issues that need attention.

Tools Used: Google Analytics 4
Affordable Alternatives: Google Analytics 4 is entirely free to use and offers many advanced features, making it a solid choice for businesses on a budget.

2. Dive Deeper with Google Search Console: Beyond Basic Analytics

Google Search Console offers insights into how your pages perform in search rankings, an essential factor in your analysis.

Action Steps:

  1. Go to Google Search Console: Choose the property (website) you are analyzing.
  2. Navigate to Performance Report: Check metrics like clicks, impressions, click-through rate (CTR), and average position.
  3. Identify Issues: If a page’s CTR has plummeted or rankings have dropped, make a note.

Tools Used: Google Search Console
Affordable Alternatives: Google Search Console is also free and can offer comprehensive insights into your page’s search performance.

3. Understand User Behavior: The Qualitative Side

Get a more nuanced understanding of how visitors interact with your pages.

Action Steps:

  1. Deploy Heatmaps: Use Hotjar to analyze where users click, scroll, or hover.
  2. Conduct User Surveys: Ask for feedback via pop-up surveys.
  3. Assess User Comments: Look at comments and social shares for qualitative insights.

Tools Used: Hotjar, SurveyMonkey

4. Evaluate SEO Health: The Nitty-Gritty Details

SEO performance can be a make-or-break factor for any webpage.

Action Steps:

  1. Keyword Rankings: Use SEMrush to track how your keywords are performing.
  2. Backlink Analysis: Use Ahrefs to see if you’re gaining or losing backlinks.
  3. Technical SEO Check: Use Screaming Frog to scan for broken links, missing metadata, or issues affecting mobile-friendliness.

Tools Used: SEMrush, Ahrefs, Screaming Frog

The Decision Matrix: An Actionable Guide to What’s Next

Based on your complete analysis, here’s how to decide on the next steps:

  • Update: If the core information is still valuable but needs minor tweaks.
  • Rewrite: If the core topic remains relevant but the content is outdated or poorly executed.
  • Remove: If the content is obsolete, misleading, or duplicated.

Your Next Steps: Implementing Changes

  • For Updating or Rewriting: Incorporate the latest data, refresh images, and adjust the SEO elements.
  • For Removal: Set up a 301 redirect using a plugin like Redirection for WordPress, and update any internal links pointing to the removed content.

Tools for Implementation: WordPress, Redirection Plugin, Google Docs for collaborative rewriting

Turn Data Into Decisions

By now, you should be well-equipped to conduct a data-driven page analysis. Regularly revisiting this process ensures that you’re always ahead of the game, keeping your site relevant, valuable, and high-performing.

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