You might publish content at scale, but how much of it resonates with your target audience? With vast amounts of content published and consumed each day, relevancy is becoming ever more crucial for effective content marketing campaigns. After all, according to recent data, 42% of consumers say irrelevant content is annoying, and 29% are less likely to purchase from brands that publish irrelevant content.

The questions marketing teams need to be asking are: "Why is relevance so important?" and, "How do you actually measure content relevance?

Why Is Relevant Content Important?

“We live in a digital age where new content is being uploaded and created every second,” explained Amy Hernandez, digital marketing associate at electrIQ Marketing, “and in order to stay relevant you have to find a way to tie your business endeavours to current events to ensure you get people's attention.” Consumers have so much information to sift through on a daily basis, so they don’t appreciate content that wastes their time.

From a technical standpoint, search engines also like relevant content. “The ultimate goal behind Google's algorithm updates is to match their users to what they're looking for,” said William Brown, SEO Specialist at Geek Powered Studios. That means it’s not just about keywords, but the intent behind content that determines how relevant it is for search queries.

How to Measure Content Relevance

It’s clear that relevant content is crucial for engaging with your target audience and improving your search ranking, but how do you measure relevance?

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Use Customer Surveys

“Conducting primary and secondary research will always help determine whether or not something is relevant,” Hernandez said. That means using customer surveys from your target market to adjust future content based on their interests.

Jamie Maddison, head of content marketing at iwoca, agrees that surveys of your target audience are crucial to “find out what motivates them, what their outlook on life is and how their business fits in with that outlook.” Surveys can create a two-way dialogue with your audience that leads to more customer-centric branding.

Analyze Conversion Rates

“Measuring relevance at the bottom of the funnel is relatively straightforward,” Maddison explained, “as you simply look at your converting pages (most likely your SEO pages) to see what value you are getting from each page.” Content that motivates potential leads to make a purchase clearly have relevant messaging.

At the top of the funnel, it’s a bit more involved. Maddison suggested, “getting email sign-ups through lead magnets (a high-value piece of content supplied in exchange for data) and then monitoring closely what content they interact with and which pieces ultimately lead to conversion.” You should track the entire customer journey from initial interactions down to conversions to see which stages you lose potential leads. This is an indicator of irrelevant content.

Learning Opportunities

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Measure Site Traffic Volume

“Start looking at the various related keywords that generate some amount of traffic for your site,” suggested Brown, “to find out if your content is attracting traffic from the right keywords you want to target.” You can use tools like Ahrefs and Google Analytics to track a variety of key traffic metrics.

“You can also track where visitors are spending most of their time,” stated Garret Seevers, VP of marketing at Azuga, “which will help you optimize the relevancy of your content.” Customers will naturally spend more time on web pages with content that interests them, so the average time-on-page metric can guide your future content efforts.

Track Customer Interaction Frequency

“Another indicator is how much engagement your post or article receives,” said Hernandez. You can monitor customer interactions through CRM and marketing automation tools to get a sense of how interested your audience is in specific pieces of content.

Tracking how frequently customers visit and interact with your site is crucial. “If you only have returning visitors” Seevers states, “then your new content is no longer driving traffic.” On the other hand, he explained, “you may get a lot of new visitors, but if they're not returning then your website is not meeting their relevance needs.” That’s why you need a good balance of interactions between new and existing customers.

Content Relevancy Is Critical

Relevancy is the driving force behind content marketing. “The aim of the game is to get potential customers to find you as an interesting source of information or entertainment,” Maddison suggested. Compelling content is a surefire way to attract and retain sales leads, but irrelevant content can severely damage your brand image.

That’s why relevancy is critical. Content that’s relevant to your target audience can significantly improve customer engagement and organic search traffic. “If you don't create relevant content,” warned Seevers, “you're not going to receive the results you want.”