SEMrush ToolBox #3: Content Analyzer tool
- SEMrush Content Analyzer Tool Overview
- SEO Rankings Drop: Performing a Content Audit
- Reduce High Bounce Rates With SEMrush Content Analyzer
- Analyze Your Competitors’ Content
- Pay Close Attention to Session Duration
- How Regularly Should You Audit Your Content?
- CTR As An Important Ranking Factor
- Should You Emulate The Number of Backlinks Your Competitors Have?
- Observe Online Discussions To Find Out About Trending Content Topics
Craig: So welcome to today's SEMrush webinar. It's SEMrush Toolbox version number three, and today I'm joined by Dido Grigorov. So, Dido, can you tell the audience a little bit about yourself?
Dido Grigorov: Hello my name is Dido Grigorov, and I work for Serpact in Bulgaria. I have 15 years in SEO. I'm focused on technical SEO, semantic SEO, and content marketing.
Today I am going to talk about the Content Analyzer tool of SEMrush.
Craig: Thank you, Dido. So thank you, everyone, who has joined today. Dido or I will both be having a look at the chat and answering any questions where we possibly can.
We are gonna share slides, rather than a live tutorial. Because we want to make sure that people can see everything clearly. So I'm going to start off with my slides just now. So, I'll just get these up and running.
SEMrush Content Analyzer Tool Overview
So the tool today is SEMrush Content Analyzer. Now many of you will probably know what it is, but for anyone who doesn't, I'll tell you where you're going to find it.
You create a project and you'll see Site Audit, Position Tracking, and all the other tools that are there. In the bottom right-hand corner you can see Content Analyzer. So if you click on Content Analyzer, what you'll normally see, and I've done an example here for Tesco, you'll see a dashboard.
Now you can see... the green buttons near the top; it says Google Analytics and Google Search Console. What I would highly recommend you do, before you do anything is connect your Analytics and your Search Console. By doing so, you're going to collect a lot more data and everything is going to be a lot more accurate.
For example, I used Tesco. Obviously, I can't connect the analytics or search console, because I'm not the site owner, and I don't have anything to do with Tesco. So, for the demonstration, I have used my own website.
So, connect to search console, connect to analytics, and it'll show me sessions, backlinks, average session generation, bounce rate, search queries, and all that kind of good stuff.
That's the kind of generic dashboard we have for Content Analyzer. At the bottom, you will see Subfolder, URL, Content Updated On, the Title tag, Words, and if I scroll up to the right, you'll see a whole heap of other data.
Now what you can do, if you are looking about here at up, just below where you can see what it says, below what it says, Content Sets, you can use the advanced filters there.
Now you can filter your content down to pages that have more than 500 words on them, or less than 500 words. Pages that have sessions from less than 25 (seconds) or less than 20 page views. Also if I click on advanced filters, you can see that you can filter the stuff down by shares, backlinks, bounce rate, search queries, content update, status quote, and any other tags that I would add to the console.
If you're gonna work along the same set of filters all the time, on the top right-hand side there, you'll see where it says save filters. You can also create a new filter there, and save that filter so if I want to drill down on lots of different pages, and I'm always going to use that same filter to walk through hundreds of pages, then I can save that filter so that I don't have to repeatedly add those filters.
If you scroll further down, you'll be able to see all of the URLs that you've got. Now you can, as I said earlier, you can see the subfolder, and you can see the URL. The first URL is Local SEO Guide Map Pack Rankings. You see below that you can add a tag to that.
So if you click on that, you can add a tag, and you can obviously filter down your tags if you want to say something along the lines of “low content” or “poor content”.
Whatever it may be, you can add whatever tag you want, and then that's what you can detect what that page is, if you determine it's poor content or something that needs to be updated, you can add that tag so that you can filter that down and distribute it amongst your staff.
Now, what's also important here or what's quite good is obviously you can see the columns here, where it says content update on, title, words, total shares, and everything else. Now if you open up the manage columns tab, you'll see that those various tick boxes there, where you can show different sets of data.
Something that I think is quite important is one; when is the content updated, two; the title tag of it, the number of words, shares, and backlinks. That's the kind of data that me, personally, I would initially look at when I was doing a content audit if you like.
So it's entirely up to yourself. Everyone's gonna be different. You can check and uncheck any of these boxes as you please. You can have one thing selected or you can have all those things selected.
The next one is, as I said, you can use the Manage Columns and you can drag and drop. So on the right-hand side, when it says status code, you see those nine little dots. What you can do here is if the very first thing I want to see is the Content Update On, then I can drag and drop all these kind of things.
You can move the order of the information you see. So, simple drag and drop using nine little dots in the right-hand side there. You just drag whatever you want up and down. Whatever you see as a priority can be there. So you can totally customize how you see this dashboard.
Now if you click on any of the URLs, what you're also taken to is the actual URL, where you can see the content. On the top right-hand side, you can see that a little tab says Notes. Now you can type a note in here and basically say to someone this has no header two tags. “Add some header two tags”. Every head of it should be on there, or you can go to tasks and you can basically tell people different things to do.
Now just below the little box, you'll see where it says invite members. You can also invite members of your team to collaborate with you on each project. So you can also invite members by email, and they'll be able to see this.
What's also really good, if you add your analytics, is below that little box you see metrics for URL by date. So you'll be able to see that this particular case study that I released probably renders the 18th of January; you'll be able to see the analytics.
You can actually see the kind of sessions that that particular post has got. Obviously, you can make judgments. So when you're doing your content analysis, you can see where that had a good peak and then it fell off, and you can make adjustments here and make tasks and everything else.
Now down at the bottom, below where the actual content is in the left-hand side, you'll be able to see the two blue buttons: previous URL and next URL. So you can basically scroll through all of the URLs in your website, making notes, checking the analytics for the hits on that page, and then what you can do is assign tasks to your team, which I'll go into in a second.
Tasks, you can also ask someone to rewrite something or delete the content, or whatever it may be. If you use a tick box, you can actually score out that task. So this can actually work as a CRM if you like. Obviously, once someone's done that task, they just take that box and it's got the black line through it and you know that's done.
Now, if you look at the top right-hand side again, those two little icons. The first one is you can also send that task to Trello, and the second one is actually send it to their Google calendar. So it depends on what way you work. So there's a nice little bit of integration there if you want to pass that work onto someone else.
You can actually assign those tasks and highlight what parts of the content you want to give them. These people can go into the Content Analyzer tool to be able to see this as well, visually.
So what you've also got on here, and it's called Content Sets. So just below the Content Audit part, you'll see where it says Content Sets. Content Sets allows you to break all this down into different collections of pages grouped together whether rewrite content or content needs to be updated ... you can basically section all your needs on this Content Sets part.
Someone can literally log in to Content Sets, go into the rewrite, and see all the URLs they need to rewrite or delete etc.
Now another thing on the Content Analyzer Tool is Post Tracking. That is where you can analyze your own blog posts or blog posts of your competitors.
Obviously, what you can't do, If you don't have access to the website, is look at the referral traffic, but you can add keywords in. You can also see shares, backlinks, and all that kind of stuff.
What you can also see, as the number of social shares that particular URL got, what backlinks its got, and it gives you an idea as to what that person's doing to promote the material and how long the content is and all that kind of stuff.
If you have content out there that's possibly similar and he's doing all of this then it gives you the data and the insights to be able to go on and do that for yourself.
There are various other things you can see as well. Shares growth. So you can see graphs here. You can see where the shares growth is coming from. 25% is coming from Facebook and nearly 75% is coming from Twitter. Obviously, that is one particular post. Different posts will have different metrics.
So I think overall, you're not just looking at the header tags or the meta descriptions or the title tags. What you want to be doing is getting as much data as you can. You can also see what they're doing in social media, backlinks-wise, and everything else.
Rather than doing all of that manually, SEMrush can do it all for you and using the content analyzer tool. So, that is a brief overview of what Content Analyzer actually does.
So, Dido will be next on and he will show us some examples of how he uses the Content Analyzer tool and some other functions and features that go on with it.
Dido Grigorov: Yeah. I will talk about the projects I have used the Content Analyzer Tool. It's actually a maybe whole case study. The project is in the Appliance Repairs Industry.
SEO Rankings Drop: Performing a Content Audit
When I started actually, I wanted to have a look to analyze the overall picture of the content side of the website.
The main problem was that the website was attacked by the Google updates in August. The website lost many visitors. Of course, every session was low, the bounce rate was high, and so on.
So I used the tool and started with observing the metrics here, where it goes to the session duration and bounce. Started going through the pages one by one. Had a look what are the possible reasons pages are generating short session durations and high bounce rates.
I came up with some ideas and prepared a plan. Of course, I exported URLs and started work on the website in the form of drafts. Actually, this was a WordPress website. So I started compiling the content in drafts and working with SEMrush and other tools. So I can make sure that I really improve the content from a relevance perspective.
Along with that, I was trying to provide more value to the user. I started comparing the pages to the competitor's and thinking about what I can do so I can do the same thing, but I can provide a little bit more so the user will stay more time on the page. That way I will lower down the bounce rate. The result was 20% down in this situation, bounce rate, and plus 35% up in the session duration.
The search queries, they are also very important when it comes to SEO because this is the overall performance. This is how visible your website is when it comes to the search engines, and especially Google. The more queries you cover, the better you will attract more visitors and you will convert better.
Reduce High Bounce Rates With SEMrush Content Analyzer
The second stage of my analysis was the bounce rate filtering. I decided to try to observe only the pages and the posts on the website with a bounce rate over 80%. Of course, I skipped some pages, because it's absolutely normal, the testimonials, for example, to have very high or fairly high bounce rate. Usually, people just go and have a look just to check if the company has any testimonial.
Of course, we applied some solutions like providing videos...rewriting the content, comparing to competitors, adding some more information around the types of appliances we cover along with the brands of appliances, and so on.
The next thing is the content length. Something interesting I found is that sometimes the short content is related to a high bounce rate. So, in other words, what I'm gonna say is that user intent is really, really, really important. So some people think that if they write short content, they will perform better for both the users and for the search engines, but that's not right.
You have to do your homework. You have to research your competitors. You have to think about how to provide your value in different kind of forms. This could be some interactive modes on the pages, it could be surveys, could be videos. Could be podcasts sometimes. Could be different types of photos or animated gifs or something like that.
If you find that your competitors are writing something about specific facts, but they don't provide enough information. But their content is too lengthy at the same time, you have to find some more information or research so we can make it a little bit longer. That way you will earn a better position. That's absolutely normal because you will give the user more. You will make it in such a way that the user will be happy to stay on the page.
So, one of the tips I would like to give to the audience here is pay attention to the user intent. Don't just take it as first priority to write lengthy content. What do I mean? If somebody is writing or is telling you, "I'm writing 2000-word articles." Don't just listen to them and start writing these articles. Do your homework and research the competitors. Find a way to provide more.
Analyze Your Competitors’ Content
I also did a post analysis of one of the competitors of my project. What I found was that actually they don't spend a lot of time to promote the content on social media, but they are writing the content with the idea to attract links, or in other words, they are promoting their brand over the web, but their social media is not their top priority in this situation.
They're trying to attract backlinks from niche related forums, niche related websites. I found actually several websites when I made the full analysis of the website. I mean the competitor website. They're trying to attract backlinks in the form of consultancy, in the form of content that is related to provide an answer to specific questions or just discussion of specific brands or specific models of appliances.
What I found is that actually achieving the best positions for their post is not so important. Of course, they had some good positions. They had one key phrase that is is on the first page. Then three on the second page, but to me, this means that the best position here is not so important to them. But relevancy and attracting the right backlinks with the right traffic with this content.
Have some goals defined with your content. Have a look and observe the results, and how your competitor performs.
Pay Close Attention to Session Duration
I always have a look at the session duration, because this is one of the things that we will tell you how good your content actually is. Keep in mind that if you don't have good content, you have a very, very short session duration. Along with that, you have a very high bounce rate.
The goal is don't be obsessed with really low bounce rates. Some bounce rates are absolutely normal, actually. Like 50% or maybe 60%, 40%. Despite the fact people are talking about that on the web, that's absolutely normal. Pay more attention to the session duration because you should have that useful content on your website.
The target pages are the pages that are converting or driving people to the customer journey of your business. These pages should generate the majority of your average session duration. Along with that, always have a look at the goals of your content. Have your goals defined for the content you are publishing on your blog posts.
Some people are writing just to attract links. That's absolutely normal too. Some people are writing just to improve the relevancy of a website. That's absolutely normal too. If you combine both of them, that would be great. Always have these goals defined on your content strategy plan, so you can get back whenever you need and have a look if you really achieve these goals or not.
We have used many tools, not only SEMrush, of course, the SEMrush was the basic, and the most important tool, because the Content Analyzer gives you the whole picture of the content performance. Believe me, this is very, very important. Because the content is technical foundation today is one of the most important sites of the SEO.
You think about the technical use as a foundation. You think about the content as the interior design of your house. So when you improve it, when you start working in the middle between, and you stay in the middle between the search engine and user, then you start learning and end up better positions, better performance. The users are happy. They start converting better, and you start generating better results in your marketing strategy.
So, when you're doing this, always, I'll summarize this in the following way. Always try to provide the best (value) available for your user.
Find some good websites where you can observe the discussion of the people. What kind of questions they are talking about. What kind of concerns they have. Strive to provide more value. Try to write some articles, with really good and rich content, but both reach from text perspective and multimedia perspective.
Try to give that best answer with really short sentences. Short paragraphs. Don't drive the user to think a lot. That way you will make him want to stay more on your pages. You will achieve higher session duration & lower bounce rate.
Craig: We will crack on with the questions and answers.
How Regularly Should You Audit Your Content?
So questions, Dido. We're going to go into some questions. We've got 11 minutes left. So, how often are you guys doing content audits? So Dido, how often are you doing that for your website? Is that something you do regularly or once every quarter or how does it work?
Dido Grigorov: Yes. Yes. How often? So, I usually start with the content audit, and after that, I'm doing this kind of audit every three to four months.
So I will know how the new pages will perform. Of course, the data will be updated all the time, and when for example, if I have a look on a specific part of the website after three months ... after six months, I will have a look at the previous part and then the new part of the website. That way I will know I have observed everything and I know the overall picture, what's going on with the metrics and how the company is performing. Both the user and the search engines.
CTR As An Important Ranking Factor
Craig: The next question is do bounce rate and time spent on page contribute to rankings? So Dido, what're your thoughts on that?
Dido Grigorov: Yes, for sure. Absolutely for sure. They are not that kind of direct ranking signal people think about. They are kind of overall metrics... overall assessment by Google of the (website) content. Pay no attention to these metrics and do your best to provide the user with the best content you can, so you will have the best metrics.
Craig: Cool and obviously on top of that, it's something I have tried and tested in terms of time on website and stuff like that. I would argue that...it's the click-through rate that actually is the important thing. So getting the clicks on the website for me, from my own testing, is a metric that Google will take more seriously than something like bounce rate. Because bounce rate is one of those metrics where someone does a backward click and it still catches a bounce. It's not an accurate measurement if you like.
Dido Grigorov: Yeah, the CTR is important. Google is more aggressive when it goes to the CTR on the top 10 results. So when you get to the top 10 results, Google will be more aggressive with you and will be more suspicious of you. Let's say it that way.
Should You Emulate The Number of Backlinks Your Competitors Have?
Craig: So, if someone's got content that's got, for example, 100 backlinks, would you replicate those factor of backlinks or would you use some other form of strategy?
Dido Grigorov: If this is me, I'll look at them and I will not replicate them one by one. Of these 100, I will find the best one for me. I won't go and pay for the link, for example, or try to make a one by one, one to one copy of these links. I will do my best to attract to the link and to order some traffic around these links.
Craig: Cool. I would tend to agree with Dido. I found looking at it, I'm not just gonna go and get 100 backlinks. Add the ones that are going to get you quality. Someone could have hundreds of average backlinks. You want good quality, relevant backlinks. Use your own initiative and do your backlink analysis. So yeah thanks, spot on answer there, Dido.
Observe Online Discussions To Find Out About Trending Content Topics
The next question we have is from Jackson McGrath. So what are your favorite ways to spot trends to what is working and your content so you can start to create a strategy to move forward with.
Dido Grigorov: I like to observe the audience on the web. What I usually do is start with creating an account, a new account, and start observing with people are talking about on networks like Reddit, for example.
So I would like to know what they are talking about there. What are there concerns, what are the most trendy topics they are discussing there. I use Google Trends. I'll use SEMrush after I collect and brainstorm some phrases. So I will check if this phrase is already trending.
Maybe I'll watch some videos on YouTube to see there is something here because of video content. I look for podcasts.
Craig: Do you have any tips on how to improve thin content?
Dido Grigorov: Yes there are several tips you can apply when it comes to the thin content. When you see it, don't be concerned. Don't worry. First, make a plan for every piece of content you have. Try to separate the main topic into subtopics. Think about how you can provide value onto these subtopics for your users.
For example, if a specific subtopic requires you to provide the video, then go and do it. Get the video from youtube, for example, but don't brand it as yours. You can make your own video. Of course, you can make it with the phone or whatever you have.
If any other subtopic requests to make a survey. Make the survey. So, how to provide more value and how to keep your user more focused on that piece of content. So, when he is reading your article, he must ... they must say to themselves, "Wow that's amazing. I will get back to that website again and I will convert to a paying customer. "
Craig: Yeah, what you're saying there makes sense. I think there's no such thing as a perfect article out there. When I started blogging I blogged and people liked videos better, so I started to do video tutorials. So there's a multitude of different ways where you can improve upon fun content, but it really depends on the topic.
Sadly, we are out of time everyone. So there are if you want to, to get ahold of Dido. If you liked Dido's presentation and you want to ask him any questions you are able to get Dido on Facebook, Twitter, where's the best place for people to get you?
Dido Grigorov: On Twitter. I like Twitter. I'm most of my time I'm on Twitter.
Craig: So that's @didogrigorov on Twitter. As I said, thank you, everyone, for joining us today. Thank you, Dido, for being today's guests and providing your valuable insights.
Dido Grigorov: You're welcome.
Craig: In a few weeks so we'll see you all in the next webinar. Thank you.Dido Grigorov: Thank you. Thank you.