Content scoring isn’t merely an exercise in semantics. There’s so much you can do with a robust scoring methodology. This post looks at the insights you can gain and the actions you can take once you start analyzing content through the content scoring lens.
Here are eight things you can do with content scores. Let’s get started!
Pinpoint Poor Quality Content
Many content marketers use the nebulous term “thin content” when they really mean poor quality. It’s simple to identify pages of low caliber just by looking at their content score. Anything with a low score is a candidate for either removing, replacing in its entirety, rewriting portions, or expanding.
Single Out Thin Content
Thin content is a situation where you only have one page with a low content score on a topic that’s vast enough to be a cluster. In a case like this, you’ll most likely want to improve the quality of the existing page by either rewriting sections and expanding it where necessary. Then add additional content that dives deeper into related topics or addresses other possible user intents.
Find Fluff Writing
Fluff writing is the use of filler words and language that fails to convey additional meaning. Often this occurs when a writer lacks sufficient domain knowledge and is looking to achieve a specific word count. You can recognize these situations by searching for pages with a low content score and high word count.
The remedy for this situation is twofold. First, edit ruthlessly to remove any irrelevant information. This should significantly reduce the word count while having a negligible effect on the content score.
Second, expand on the focus topic by exploring highly related subtopics. Your goal should be to convey the maximum amount of information with minimal use of words.
Identify Expert Content
Expert content is the polar opposite of fluffy writing. These pages have a high content score, especially within the context of word count.
There’s a misguided belief by many content marketers that longer content is better. That’s not true. Information density has greater significance than content length.
A lousy 500-word piece of content doesn’t magically improve with the addition of another 500 or 1,000 words. You enhance its quality by addressing those all-important related topics efficiently.
Once you’ve identified your expert content, use them as models of inspiration for current and future writers. If you find yourself with more fluff than expert content, perhaps you’re focusing too much on word count at the expense of content quality.
Locate Pages With Keyword Stuffing
Pages with a low content score and numerous mentions of the focus keyword (topic) probably suffer from keyword stuffing. The practice of stuffing keywords into content fell out of favor years ago. Google’s Florida (November 2003), Panda (February 2011), and Hummingbird updates effectively put a nail in that coffin.
However, if you find this type of content still on your site, it will either need to be removed or replaced. That’s assuming it has value.
Rewriting isn’t usually practical with this type of content. Blog posts like these can be worse than fluff writing, especially if their score is primarily based on the usage of one keyword. There’s not enough valuable content there to improve.
Recognize Optimization Opportunities
Pages hampered by a low content score, but have a decent ranking where a little elbow grease can push it over to the next page are ideal candidates. When you’re ranking near the top of a page, it often needs little effort to nudge it to the next page. Certainly, it requires less work than creating a brand new blog post.
For these situations, you’ll most likely need to rework existing sections and expand as required to boost its content score. Since you’re taking time out to improve the post, it makes sense to aim high so that your new content score rests within the top 25%. That way you’re virtually guaranteed to see some results.
Establish Expansion Opportunities
If you have a page with a low content score, low word count and low ranking for a particular topic, it may be a prospective expansion opportunity. Typically in a situation like this, the content score is pretty good given the word count.
A blog post like this usually doesn’t need to be rewritten. To further improve the score, add additional sections that address related subtopics.
Discover Topics Ripe for Additional Coverage
Adequately covering a subject in only one blog post is challenging. If the result is a 15,000-word magnum opus that few people read, what’s the point?
If you have a high content score but only a couple of pages covering a specific topic, it may be time to flesh out that concept into a bonafide content cluster. The high content score shows you’ve done an excellent job in covering that topic in depth.
But don’t stop there. The lack of additional pages signifies a potential for further exploration of that subject.
In this case, consider exploring the issue from a different that satisfies another user intent. Alternatively, you can take one specific topic mentioned in the original blog post and cover it in greater detail with additional examples.
It’s Your Turn
Start taking a scientific approach to content. Content score, combined with ranking, word count and other factors can focus your content team on efforts that provide the best return on investment.
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Written by Stephen Jeske