What is a content gap analysis | How to use it for your business growth ( In-Depth Guide )

what is a content gap analysis
Content Writing

What is a content gap analysis | How to use it for your business growth ( In-Depth Guide )

With over 4,700,000 pieces of content published daily, it is challenging to create effective content that draws the attention of the readers and engages them. 

Content gap analysis is one of the crucial steps before you start writing a piece of content. But most of the writers do not have a proper idea of what is a content gap analysis and the content gap analysis steps. 

Ranking on the first page of search engine result pages is one of the major goals of content marketing. Publishing relevant and fresh content that fills in the gaps of the existing content is one sure way to attract the attention of the search engine bots as well as your target audience. 

What is Content Gap Analysis?

Content gap analysis is the process of analyzing the available content across a particular topic found across different media platforms, and identifying the gaps. In other words, it is the process of finding out the gaps between the audience content demands and content available in the media. 

For example,

A few months earlier, I wanted to write a post on google rich snippets. Before starting to pen the post I first analyzed the available content on the topic. 

After spending a few hours on research, I noticed that there was not much content on the topic, and the available content was

  • Difficult to understand for the readers
  • Boring as it lacked relevant examples 
  • Irrelevant

I tried to fill in these gaps with my content. As expected the post did great and is featured as the top 3 in the Google SERPs for the keyword “what are google rich snippets for local business?”

Why Is It Essential to Perform Content Gap Analysis? 

A content gap is a gap between the expectations of the audience and the content published by a brand. In simpler words, your audience may be looking for specific answers to their questions, which cannot be found in your content or the content published by your competitors. 

Understanding this gap and creating content that provides direct answers to their questions will not only help you to connect and engage with your target audience but also to convert them into paying customers. 

Content gap analysis helps you to understand what are the pain points of your customers and curate relevant content that provides exact answers that help them to solve their problems. 

For example,

If you have an online clothes store, you may be publishing content that helps your prospective customers choose affordable clothing for different occasions. But your audience may be looking for answers to other questions that help them to understand your brand better. 

If they cannot find the answers, they will immediately go to your competitors in search of relevant answers.  

Anticipating these questions and creating content that specifically answers them aids to convert prospective buyers into loyal customers. 

Benefits of Content Gap Analysis

  • Better communication with your potential customers, who are in different stages of the buyer’s journey. 
  • Improving your SEO rankings with unique and relevant content
  • Generates traffic to your website as more and more people will visit your site to find information that addresses their pain points. 

Types of Content Gap Analysis

There are 3 main types of content gap analysis. You should look out for these 3 gaps to make your content compelling to the audience. 

  • Keyword Gap Analysis
  • Buying Stage Gap Analysis
  • Channel Gap Analysis

Keyword Gap Analysis

Identifying the right keywords is key for SEO success. Keyword Gap Analysis allows you to find out the keywords that your competitors are ranking for but you do not. It also helps to identify new keywords that are used by your prospective audience, which neither you nor your competitors rank for. 

Once you have the list of the keywords, the next step is to target these keywords. Let us see how to fix these keyword gaps. 

How to fix keyword gaps?

  1. You can create fresh content to address the new keywords
  2. Refresh your existing content by adding the new keywords 
  3. If you already have content for the keywords, update it to make it relevant
  4. Merge pages with content on the same topic

If you are still unsure about how to fix keyword gaps and create optimized content, contact the content experts at Towards 90. We have a dedicated team of content writers to create compelling content on different topics. 

Buying Stage Gap Analysis

Your prospective customers move through the different stages of the marketing funnel before they finally make the buying decision. The content demands vary depending on each person’s stage in the marketing funnel. 

For example, the content that is suitable for a person at the brand awareness stage is not suitable for a person at the decision-making stage. Buying stage gap analysis aids to identify whether your content suits the demands of the buyers at these different stages or not. 

Generally, there are 3 stages in the marketing funnel – 

Top of the Funnel (ToFU)

This content is generally aimed to cater to the broad audience who is researching a topic. It provides basic information about the topic to create awareness among the target audience. Educative blog posts, lists, content that answers to questions like “how to”, “why”, “what is” and so on falls under this category. The primary aim of ToFU content is to attract the readers’ interest and drive traffic to your website. 

Middle of the Funnel (MoFU)

This content gets a little specific and provides the relevant product details to the readers. It provides readers with a better understanding of how your product or service can help in solving their challenges. Case studies, in-depth blog posts, email campaigns, ebooks, webinars are the most used formats for MoFU content. The primary aim of MoFU content is to educate the audience about the specialty of your brand and engage them. 

Bottom of the funnel (BoFU)

This content is for the audience at the decision-making stage. It provides in-depth information that motivates the audience to make the purchase decision. Some types of BoFU content are product demos,  product comparison tables and videos, FAQs, and customer testimonials.  

You have to review your content and match it with these different stages of the marketing funnel. 

However, you should also consider your business goals to determine the right mix of content according to the buying stages. 

For example, if you have a startup, your main aim is to create brand awareness and attract more traffic to the website. You will require more ToFU content for this purpose. Once the audience starts arriving on your website, you should have more MoFU content to convince them to spend more time on your website. Finally, the BOFU content plays a crucial role in making the final conversions. 

Once, you identify the gaps you have to create new content to fill in the gaps or refresh your existing content to suit the audience’s requirements according to their stage in the funnel. 

Channel Gap Analysis

The channels you choose to promote your content play a significant role in determining the effectiveness of the content. Channel gap analysis helps to identify the different platforms where you are lagging while promoting your content. You can devise strategies to make an impact on these channels or to switch the underperforming channels with the ones that promise more returns.

Steps in Channel Gap Analysis

  • Make a list of all the different platforms you use to publish and promote your content. Some content distribution channels are:
  1. Social media
  2. Industry forums
  3. User forums like quora
  4. Paid search
  5. Email campaigns
  6. Guest posts 
  7. Sponsored posts 
  • Analyze the content you have for each distribution channel.
  • Make a note of the type of content that is performing well on each channel
  • You can conduct a content gap analysis for each channel such as paid search gap analysis, social media gap analysis, and so on. 
  • Compare your investment and goals for each channel Vs the actual performance.
  • Identify the channels with the most potential and the underperforming ones.
  • Look at the channels your competitors are using to attract the audience.
  • Identify the opportunities that you are missing out
  • Allocate resources to create content for different channels                        

Now that we understand what is a content gap analysis and the types of content gap analysis, let us proceed towards the process of content gap analysis. 

Process of  Content Gap Analysis

1. Identify Your Goals 

Determine the reasons why you want to perform a content gap analysis. Identifying the goals beforehand will help you to chart out a plan and achieve the results.

Ask questions such as  

  • Is your content not performing as per the expectations?
  • Are you unable to rank well on the search engines?
  • Is your website not getting the desired traffic?
  • Do you want to explore new opportunities in terms of keywords or distribution channels? 
  • Do you want to conduct a competitor gap analysis to know what your competitors are up to?

Answering these questions will help you to get a clear vision of your objectives for conducting the content gap analysis. 

2. Research Your Audience

As discussed earlier, the content gap analysis helps you to know the gap between audience expectations and content availability. Hence it is crucial to understand your audience and their content demands well before you start the process. 

Create buyers personas and segment your audience to know more about them. This will help you to gather more information about the daily challenges of your customers, their pain points, and their content requirements. 

You should also map your customer’s journey through the marketing funnel. Include all the touchpoints a prospective customer can have with your brand from the awareness stage to the final conversion. 

3. Content Audit

A content audit is a process of assessing the strengths and weaknesses of your content and monitoring its performance in achieving the goals. The content audit helps you to build your content strategy and improve SEO metrics such as rankings of the page, backlinks, etc. 

As part of the content audit, you have to make a list of all the content created by your brand and analyze the performance of each piece vis-a-vis its goals. You can measure the performance of the content using metrics such as 

  • Quality and quantity of traffic generated
  • Bounce rate
  • Time on page
  • Engagement – likes, shares and comments

4. Content Matching

The last step in the content gap analysis is content matching. Now that you have identified your goals, mapped all the customer touchpoints, and assessed the performance of the content, the final step is to match the content with the different stages in the customer’s journey. Analyze how the content meets your customers content requirements and your content marketing goals. 

Match the content pieces according to their suitability to the customer’s journey. Continue the process until you match all the content pieces. Any content that is left out is the content created without your customers in mind. 

5. Competitor Content

This is the most critical part of the process. Analyze your competitors content to understand the tactics used by them to attract prospective customers. 

Steps in Competitor Gap Analysis

  • Conduct a comprehensive keyword analysis to identify the keywords that your competitors rank for, but you do not. You can use tools such as SEMRush, ahrefs, etc. for this purpose
  • Find out the common keywords that both you and your competitors rank for and compare your rankings with them. 
  • Make a note of the keywords you are lagging behind your competitors and analyze the reasons for their better ranking. Observe the quality of their content and the pain points it solves. This will give you an idea about what type of content you should be creating for the specific keywords to outrank your customers. 

Competitor gap analysis helps you to know about the content opportunities that you might have overlooked. It also aids to identify the pain points or challenges that competitor content aims to solve. It also helps you to discover the topics of interest to your customers.

Tools For Content Gap Analysis

Content gap analysis involves both qualitative and quantitative research. The qualitative part of the research involves steps such as creating buyer personas, mapping customers journey, etc. Whereas, quantitative research includes keyword research, measuring the performance metrics, SEO analysis, etc. 

Serial noNameFeaturesCost 
1Topic IntelligenceIdeal for keyword analysisCan also be used for competitor analysisProvides useful strategies to outrank your competitors for specific keywordsGenerates custom author briefing to help writers 
2AhrefsTools for keyword and website analyticsProvides useful tools to measure key content audit metricsContent gap tool for website gap analysis Plans starting US$99/month
3SEMrushTools for keyword analysisProvides tools for SEO analysis and content auditGap analysis tool to rank your website on basis of keyword performance and the backlink structurePlans starting from US$ 99/month

Tips to Close the Content Gap

The objective of the content gap analysis is to identify the content gaps and close them. Revising your content strategy by including the new ideas and concepts identified is the best place to start the process. Here are some effective tips to close the content gaps and improve customer engagement. 

Remove Redundant Content

Your content audit will help to identify any content that is redundant and does not match the customer requirements. Redundant content bores the readers and confuses them as it does not offer any value. You have to remove such content or consolidate it to make the content informative and engaging.

For example, 

If you have any repetitive content on your website that addresses the same pain point of the customers, you can consolidate the content and remove the repetitive pieces. 

Content Refresh

Content refresh is an effective way to use your existing content by adding the missing pieces instead of creating new content for every keyword. 

  • Choose the keywords that you want to rank well. 
  • Analyze the content that you already have for the respective keywords. 
  • Compare it to the top-performing content for the specific keyword.
  • Take note of the missing information. 
  • Refresh the content with new information to make it relevant.

Content Creation

Content gap analysis helps you to find out new opportunities to create fresh content. It helps you to discover new keywords, ideas, and topics that are of interest to your customers. To benefit from these new opportunities, you have to create fresh content. However, ensure that the content is optimized to meet the requirements of your users. 

You can either create the content in-house if you have a team of content writers or hire an experienced content marketing agency to do the job for you. 

Towards 90 is a well-known content marketing agency in India. We provide content creation services for organizations from different industries. No matter whether you need a content refresh, content consolidation, or new content, we can do it for you. We have a team of professional content writers with industry experience and subject matter expertise. Contact us now for more details on how to close content gaps and boost your conversions.