What is a content gap analysis?
Before discussing the most effective content gap analysis tools on the market, we should define the concept.
A content gap analysis evaluates your existing content and identifies the subjects and material you are missing. Understanding these gaps helps you provide better content for your audience.
Another element of a content gap analysis involves evaluating the existing content available on the subject and seeing where it can be improved. For example, the current information could be out of date, irrelevant, hard to read, or failing in some way to provide the target audience with the value they deserve. Situations like these create opportunities for your brand.
Benefits of a content gap analysis
Running a content gap analysis provides several benefits for both you and your target audience. Here is why.
#1. Discover new keywords
A content gap analysis helps you discover the keywords your competitors are using. These analyses can provide a source of relevant keywords that you can use for your own content, as well as better insights into your target audience.
#2. Unearth new opportunities
A good content gap analysis will alert you to new content opportunities you haven’t considered yet. That could mean novel angles on your existing content or entirely fresh subjects you haven’t covered.
#3. Better, more relevant content
Once you’ve fleshed out your content to include the new keywords and opportunities, you can serve your target audience with blogs and other material they want to read. That means more search traffic and better conversions.
Best tools for content gap analysis
OK, now that we know the benefits of content gap analysis, it’s time to explore the tools that can help you get there. We’ll break content gap analysis into a few distinct phases and highlight the best tools for the job within each category.
#1. Keyword research
Keyword research is a big part of a solid content gap analysis approach. It helps you understand the words and phrases that your target audience uses to find information on your niche or specialist areas.
Good keyword research will help you draw up a list of questions and topics related to your product and service. The right software will also underline search volumes and keyword difficulty while providing recommendations for terms and topics to add to your content strategy.
Best tool for keyword research: Google Keyword Planner
When it comes to keyword research tools, you’re never short of choice. We’ve given Google Keyword Planner the nod because it’s totally free to use. However, there are lots of other excellent choices out there, including Moz, SEMrush, and Ahref’s respective keyword planning tools.
#2. Competitor analysis
The next stage of figuring out gaps in your content involves looking at what your rivals are doing. The process starts with looking at page 1 of the SERP for a particular keyword and looking at what is ranking well. This process is useful because:
- It gives you an idea of what type of topics and content rank well
- It helps you understand content gaps in your rival’s articles so you can find ways to provide better content.
However, a good competitor analysis tool will give you the inside track of your competitor’s SEO strategy and save you a lot of time, too.
Best tool for competitor analysis: Similarweb
We think that Similarweb is an excellent option for competitor analysis because of its versatility. It can shine a light on your rival’s SEO strategy and give you a good idea about what’s working for them. The UI is user-friendly, the numbers are accurate, and you can use it for both organic and paid marketing channel reports.
#3. Content audit
Running a content audit is an effective way to get a flavor of any gaps in content. It allows teams to take a more data-driven approach to their marketing materials and understand where they need to improve.
Best tool for content audits: Google Analytics 4 (GA4)
Google Analytics gets our pick for the best content audit tool. You can use the tool free of charge to gain insights into your website and content performance and see what needs to be changed. While there is some subjectivity in determining the quality of content, it’s good to have hard data to help with your decision-making.
#4. Content mapping
Content mapping allows businesses to map their existing content against the buyer journey. For example, you could use a simple sales funnel and ensure you have top, middle, and bottom funnel content. Similarly, you could use the AARRR framework to guarantee you have a smooth pipeline of organic prospects.
Mapping out your content against one of these frameworks can help reveal gaps in your customer acquisition strategy. It can also help you produce more effective content because you become much more focused on the utility of each piece.
Best tool for content mapping: HubSpot CMS Hub
Any content management system (CMS) that allows you to tag your content can be used for content mapping. However, the HubSpot CMS Hub allows you to build highly targeted content for different lifecycle stages, personas, keywords, channels, and more.
#5. Content ideas
Once you’ve looked at your competitor’s content, analyzed relevant keywords and phrases, and audited and mapped your own content, you should have very clear ideas about what you need to write about next. However, you can never have too many good ideas. What’s more, it’s good to have a source for ideas that go beyond what your rivals are writing about.
Best tool for content ideas: AnswerThePublic
As voice search grows in market size, having an idea of what your target audience is really asking (and what keywords they’re using) is vital. AnswerThePublic is a great tool for finding new questions and topics that you can use for your content strategy.
A content gap analysis is a multi-pronged approach to understanding your content in the wider context of what answers your competitors are providing. Thankfully, there are lots of great tools out there to help you each step of the way. So, try them out so you can take your content to the next level.