What Is A Content Gap Analysis?
A content gap analysis is both a content strategy and SEO technique that is performed to find gaps in your website’s content sets. It’s the process of mapping out your customer’s primary questions, goals, and concerns throughout their purchase journey, and then measuring against your current content offerings to find gaps.
There are two types of gap analysis that are typically performed; internal gap analysis, and a competitive gap analysis. We will explain both, however in this article we will address how to do a competitive gap analysis to take Google traffic and search share from your competition.
What Is An Internal Website Gap Analysis?
Keeping customers loyal to your brand involves creating quality content, and addressing the reasons that customers continue to find your company’s information useful should be among your top priorities.
The goal of an internal content gap analysis is to find gaps in content where users are underserved or are searching for something on your website that you don’t have content to address. Once this is identified, the next step is creating great content to better serve users, increase engagement, and help create a better experience once they get to your website.
What Is A Competitive Keyword Gap Analysis?
Looking into the realm of content that your competition has been creating might unlock some hidden potential for future blog posts and articles. This SEO content gap analysis and audit works no matter what stage your website is in, whether you’re a startup, or your brand has been around for years.
A competitive gap analysis is a SEO strategy that aims to identify gaps in keywords that the competitors are ranking for – and which you are not – that you can then create content for to rank better than them, and steal their organic traffic and search engine rankings.
The process answers three primary competitive SEO questions:
- Which keywords are your competitors ranking for that you are not?
- What do you need to do to take traffic and search share away from your competitors?
- What content do you need to create to beat your competition in the SERPs?
How To Do A Competitive Content Gap Analysis In 10 Simple Steps
- Use a tool such as SEMrush to export all the keywords that your competition is ranking for.
- Delete all rows except Keyword, Ranking, Search Volume, and URL – these are the only ones you will need.
- Organize the list by URL to find the content that is ranking for the most number of keywords.
- Scrub the list to remove any URLs that are not relevant.
- Analyze the content – explore each URL that is ranking to determine the topics that are being written about (H2 & H3 tags). Take time to compare the ways that competitors were using SEO tactics to rank within the search results.
- Analyze the keywords that each URL is ranking for within the top 20 SERPs (if this data set is too small you can do the top 50 or even the top 100) – these will be keywords to add to the article, where it makes sense.
- Organize the keywords for each URL by search volume – this, combined with step 5 above (and step 8 below), will give you an idea of primary and secondary topics, as well as long tail keywords to include in your blow article.
- Utilize a keyword research tool to find additional keywords pertaining to the topic, that can be used to expand on the competitors article.
- Create a new an improved article that goes above and beyond what the competitor has written. Your creative team should be able to add a fresh spin on what value the competition has created.
- Repeat these steps on as many competitors or industry website as you’d like.
How Often Should a Gap Analysis Be Performed?
We recommended performing a CGA four times each year, conducting the analysis at least one time for each quarter. This will provide insights into the following quarters content creation strategy and how to better serve website users.
By conducting a regular CGA for each quarter, your content will continue to evolve, and the goals of your business will be easier to achieve. You’re making the responsible decision to take steps to keep your website fresh. Keep readers interested in coming to your site to find the needs that your brand intends to serve.
Tools for Comparing Your Content to Competitors
Looking through content to compare with more than one competitor will help you gain insight, but it’s a difficult process to manage on your own. Luckily, the digital age of marketing has presented business owners with a variety of tools to help alleviate some of the stress that comes with conducting a successful CGA.
Tool #1: SEMrush – This company provides SEO tools for competitive businesses. Their product offerings include tools to help gain more organic traffic, tools to help audit your content for backlink usage, and a tool called Competitive Advantage that will analyze your content in comparison to competitor materials.
Tool #2: Ahrefs – The product offerings of this company are also focused around helping companies realize how their content compares to competitive content. They claim to help businesses research their niches to rank higher on SERPs. The goal behind working with Ahrefs is to figure out exactly what your competition is doing with their content that is making their pages rank higher than yours, which should impact the flow of organic traffic to your site.
Following Up After CGA Is Complete
The point of creating a CGA is to achieve results with future content. Use the information gained from each CGA to inspire an enlightened perspective when creating new content for your website in the future. Going forward with new ideas for keyword use and ideas from analyzing competitor content will make a difference in achieving goals for future projects.
In addition to making a stride to create better content in the future, the CGA you perform for each quarter should go towards improving previous content. The content you analyze with each CGA may be altered to improve its ranking in search engines by changing the keywords used in the metadata of the webpages that were analyzed. The relationships that your company has with other businesses and individuals will contribute to helping minimize the gap in your previously released content.