Content Pruning

content pruning


Content pruning is the act of finding and updating or removing content from your website that no longer contributes to a demonstrable return on investment, high Search Engine Ranking, good User Experience, or conversion rate optimization.

A site, section, or niche-wide examination of all (or most) of your website’s publicly exposed components is known as content pruning.

The Goal of Content Pruning

The goal of content pruning is to:

  • Enhance the user experience
  • Improve technical features of a site, such as the time it takes for a page to load.
  • Increase the effectiveness of internal links
  • Increase your visibility in search results.

While the aims listed above are all worthy ones and dealing with problematic content makes sense from a quality standpoint, it’s crucial to assess the benefits and drawbacks of a Content Prune.

Completing a Content Audit

Before deciding on a content prune, it’s a smart choice to audit your content and get a sense of how much work you’ll be doing.

Depending on your objectives, a content audit can be broad or specific. For example, you may be in a position to conduct a site-wide.

If you want to get into it gradually, focus on one part, subject matter, niche topic, or content hub at a time, evaluating and analysing the benefits on a smaller group of content assets as you go.

The following are the primary tasks that make up a content audit:

1. Make a list of all the information you want to examine

Use a Spreadsheet or other Analytics tool of your choice to organise your content for a simple evaluation, action, and editing.

2. Using your favourite tool, collect the following critical metrics:

  • Titles
  • Ranking position of main keyword/s
  • Organic traffic
  • Bounce rate
  • Backlinks
  • Internal link structure and navigation
  • Time on page
  • Total Social shares, likes, etc.

The majority of these metrics may be found in Google Analytics and Google Search Console.

3. Measure duplicate content.

Duplicate content refers to content that appears elsewhere on your site for a specific URL. Anything higher than 15% is a problem. Anything beyond 25% should be investigated for optimization or deleted entirely.

The content audit should discover content that is thin, uninteresting, badly written or ranks low. Most site owners and content marketers will immediately spot such content since it stands in striking comparison to the successful and consistently popular content on their site.


Identifying Low-Quality Content

Low-quality material underperforms when compared to the rest of your content or when compared to your ideal rank.

Low-quality content can also be identified by thin or low-word-count material, a lack of keyword and semantically relevant keywords, and poor sentence structure and formatting.

If the slow loading pages are generated by rich media, video, pop-ups, or large photos, these may be easily corrected.

A modest number of inbound links (depending on the source of those connections) could also signal that while the page is well-written, it is not link-worthy when compared to your competitors.

Conducting the Content Prune

You must first segregate the content you have analysed before proceeding with the content pruning. Regardless of the outcome of your content audit, divide your content into three categories:

  • The most crucial information (impacts sales, traffic or some other conversion factor)
  • If it can be improved, it’s worth keeping
  • It’s not worth keeping because it adds nothing to your company’s goals, trust, or authority

The first set of content you should deal with should be the most important stuff that looks to be faulty in your list.

Duplicate content, thin content, and poorly optimised content are the three most critical variables at the content level.

  1. Deal with the Duplicate Content

Some apps will show you where the duplicate is at a glance so you can go in and correct it. Run the report for each of your most significant pieces of content. Make the necessary modifications, then re-run your report to see how far you’ve come. Don’t undervalue the importance of this procedure. Duplicate content degrades the effectiveness of every page it touches, and removing it can have a significant impact.

2. Build Out Thin Content

Google is looking for unique, high-quality, and valuable material. When you give a piece of content about Content Pruning in under 600 words, it’s hard to convince Google that you’re serious. It’s OK for a well-optimized product description, but it’s not appropriate for instructional or educational material.

Running your article via a tool that checks if your material is up to search engine standards is a fantastic approach to expand your content and boost the Search Optimisation of your article. TextOptimizer is one such tool.

Many of the resources you’ll need can be found in Google Analytics and Google Search Console, but these extra tools can quickly deliver a wealth of additional information.

TextOptimizer compares your page against real-time Google results for your chosen term.

Your formatting, vocabulary, and syntax will all be checked. Most importantly, it will compare your material to Google’s top results and return a high-quality list of words, phrases, and sentences that are utilised in the top results, allowing you to effortlessly include them into your work.

The tool will grade your content based on actual results that are ranking at the top of Google or Bing, not on arbitrary criteria.

Use these extra words, phrases, and sentences in the most natural way possible to help build out your content and enrich it with words that Google thinks are most likely linked with it.

3. Correct Poorly Optimised Content

A bad choice of words and structure might sometimes be the most serious issue. It’s important to write well. Not only does your material need to be well-written, but it also needs to be laid up in an easy-to-read format with strategically placed keywords, headings, and other meta tags.

The following are qualities of a well-optimized page:

  • Keyword in both the title and the URL
  • Headings H1–H4 in order or a logical sequence
  • Bullet points should be used effectively to break up the content.
  • For a better user experience, use short sentences and paragraphs.
  • Ideas should not be repeated very often.
  • Image alt tags should be used naturally.

Other search components, such as rich snippet consideration, will be influenced by these factors. Simply reformatting your subheadings may be enough to land you on Google’s first page of results.

The optimisation involves user experience, which has a direct impact on time spent on the site, which in turn has an impact on search ranking. So, keep your customers in mind when designing your website.

Wrap up

Google is in the business of answering people’s questions. Month after month, if not year after year, material that endures is content that continues to match consumer demands.

Pruning your content should be a part of your entire content marketing plan. It should not be viewed as a clean-up, but rather as an opportunity to examine, renew, and add value to the most important information on your site.

Content pruning should become a component of the organization’s monthly material strategy, with quarterly reviews of reduced content performance.


Additional Readings: 


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Content Pruning

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The Goal of Content Pruning

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How to Conduct Content Pruning

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Content Pruning Means

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