Content ideation, i.e. the process of coming up with great content ideas that will be helpful and interesting for the target audience, is one of the most difficult and time-consuming steps in the content marketing process. In fact, a recent study by SEMrush reveals that finding the most prominent topics is the 3rd most challenging task for a content strategist – just next to developing an ROI plan and content creation.
While there are a plethora of different tools in the market that can help ease this burden, there is actually one tool that – which probably you already used – that can help you gather potential topics for your content marketing efforts – Google Analytics.
As one of the top must-have digital marketing tools out there, Google Analytics can provide with a wealth of data which you might not know can help you come up with killer content ideas. Read on as we discuss in this infographic the ways you can use Google Analytics in your content ideation process.
1. Use Site Search Terms as Content Ideas
You may think that your site’s search tool is only there to help your visitors navigate in your website, but other than that, it is actually a treasure trove where you can find exciting content topics that will resonate well with your audience. The “Site Search” report provides all the search query visitors have used to look for content on your site.
- In Google Analytics, go to Behavior > Site Search > Search Terms
By accessing this Google Analytics report, you will not only be able to determine if your site navigation is structured efficiently, but also determine the information your site visitors want to find, but not yet existing in your website, and thus, allowing you to create content pieces that will help bridge that gap.
2. Access Search Queries Report to Create Intent-Based Content
Aside from Site Search report, there is another Google Analytics feature that will give you a peek inside the head of your visitors. However, this one will help you create content that matches your target audience’ true intent when searching for keywords you are already ranking for – the Search Queries report.
- In Google Analytics, go to Acquisition > Search Engine Optimization > Queries
By accessing this analytics report, you will be able to see the actual queries your target audience use when searching for information about the product or service which your business offers. However, in order to separate the queries of users who want to specifically find your brand from the general queries you want to rank for, you must exclude queries with your brand name or have buyer-intent keywords in it.
The intent behind the keywords your target audience use can be classified into five types:
- Know – Understand a certain topic, product, or service.
- Do – Execute a certain activity online.
- Buy – Purchase a product or service.
- Web – Visit a webpage or website.
- Local – Visit a local establishment.
If the intent behind the top queries in your queries report is of Know intent, then you should create informational content such as articles or blog posts that answer those queries. However, if you find that most of the queries that bring visitors to your site have to Buy or Local intent, then it’s wiser that you instead focus on optimizing your Product or Service pages first, though you can also include those keywords in your informational content then use that to deliver a compelling CTA to match their intent.
Providing content that matches the intent behind the keywords you want to rank is essential to succeeding online these days. According to a Harvard Business Review report, individual customer stakeholders who perceived supplier content to be tailored to their specific needs were 40% more willing to buy from that supplier than stakeholders who didn’t. This is in line with another study which found that 74% of customers feel frustrated when a website’s content is not personalized.
3. Repurpose Content With the Longest Average Time on Page
The average time spent on page is an extremely helpful analytics metric that will not only tell you how long your visitors stay on each and every page of your website, but also show you which of your content gets the most engagement from your visitors.
- In Google Analytics, go to Behavior > Site Content > All Pages
Once you are in the All Pages report, add a blog filter in order to fill out the non-blog pages. After that, switch to “Comparison View” and select Average Time on Page to see which of your content hold people’s attention the longest.
By doing so, you will be able to repurpose your most popular content pieces into other formats such as slideshows, videos, or infographic – and also create new content on topics that have already gained traction from your audience.
4. Update Content With High Bounce Rate and Exit Rate
In SEO, having a high bounce rate and exit rate basically means that a high number of people leave the website after visiting multiple pages (exit rate) or without visiting any other page (bounce rate) at all. While having a bounce rate and exit rate is not necessarily bad, it can tell you if your content pieces are effective at all in attracting and keeping visitors within your website.
- In Google Analytics, go to Behavior > Site Content > All Pages
In the All Pages report, choose Source/Medium in the secondary dimension box and sort the results by Unique Pageviews or Unique Visits to see how many new visitors go to the blog page of your website. Compare these figures to Bounce Rate and Exit Rate column in the report to see how many of those visitors actually read your content.
Those content pieces that have a high number of Unique Views but have a high bounce rate and exit rate mean they are not effective in keeping the interest of the visitor. The most common reason for this disengagement is that the content is no longer relevant to the visitors or the information included in the piece are already outdated. According to Christopher Penn, updating and refreshing blog content can lead to 40% more traffic.
Creating engaging and highly-valuable content pieces can be a monumental task. By thinking outside the box and using the analytics tool which you already have in your hands, you will be able to create content that will truly resonate with your target audience and will deliver the results you want. But content marketing does not stop by simply gathering ideas. You need to build, revise, then share continuously in order to squeeze out the most from each and every content that you produce.
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