Tech SEO Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You...

Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You Should Care

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It’s high quality over quantity lately, right?

While it’s 100% true that you must at all times be creating the very best high quality content material in your customers and the assorted search engines like google, there may be also energy in figuring out the place you stand towards your opponents.

It’s good to know the quantity of high quality content material being created on both sides.

Think of it this manner, if you’re creating very high-quality content material on a weekly/month-to-month foundation.

A competitor is creating 2x high-quality content material on a weekly/month-to-month foundation.

While one other is creating 5x high-quality content material on a weekly/month-to-month foundation.

Who wins?

Most would say the consumer – which is a sunshine and rainbows reply.

The true reply, although, is the competitor creating 5x high-quality content material.

One of the issues I’ve at all times found humorous concerning the web optimization business is our capacity to mark one thing as utterly evil, and condemning it for all of eternity.

I’m guilty of this, too, but we have to take a step back and acknowledge that doing issues in large portions isn’t at all times unhealthy if they’re being accomplished accurately.


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What Is Content Velocity?

To put it merely, content material velocity is measuring the quantity of content material a model is placing out throughout a outlined interval of time.

If you needed to examine your content material velocity versus your closest competitor inside a given quarter, you’ll be measuring how much content material you place out for that quarter versus how much content material they put out as properly.

Why You Should Care About It

There are many use instances for measuring and reporting on content material velocity.

It all simply relies upon on what point you are attempting to make.

Here are those I really feel are most impactful.

1. Making a Case for More Resources

One of the best methods to make the most of this data is to make the case to get more assets to create content material, particularly for those who’re behind.

Executives hate dropping to and love beating and staying ahead of their opponents.

Looking at aggressive content material velocity and evaluating it to your own is a smart way to show to your executives that you just need more assets.


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Regardless of whether or not it’s to catch up and overtake, or to stay ahead and proceed to bury them.

2. Determining Your Competitors’ Resources

On the alternative side of making the case for more assets in your business, you need to use content material velocity to decide what number of people are working in your competitor’s content material program as properly.

This offers you a data-driven manner to decide what number of people opponents have on staff.

Whether it’s full-time assets, freelance writers, or a combine of both, figuring out this information permits you to plan your strategy accordingly.

3. Estimating the Cost of Content

Using this data you possibly can also estimate how much cash is being spent on content material throughout your opponents and the way much it would probably cost you internally.

While it’s an estimation, it offers a clearer image of how much cost is probably involved in making the content material program you want to launch a reality.

The business can get their arms across the program utilizing a data-driven strategy and make it work inside your funds.

How to Calculate Content Velocity

Calculating content material velocity can vary from fairly easy to very difficult.

In its easiest form, you are able to do it utilizing a couple of normal instruments that the majority SEOs have entry to like SEMrush and Screaming Frog.

The first step is to get the weblog/article pages that exist on a site.

it’s as easy as going into SEMrush, filtering down to these pages utilizing the URL filter perform, and exporting the final list.

Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You Should Care

Next, you want to take these URLs and put the list into Screaming Frog and set up a customized extraction.


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This will pull within the publish date that may enable you to analyze how usually content material is being created for a site throughout a sure interval of time.

The commonest kind of extractions for publish date by way of XPath and RegEx are:

  • Metadata.
  • Article schema.
  • Blogposting schema.

While this won’t deal with each site you possibly can simply examine to see how publish dates are dealt with and set up the customized extraction from there.

Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You Should Care

Once the crawl is run by way of the URLs you’ll then have a list that pulls out the publish dates.


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That will enable you to pivot the data and see the quantity of content material that’s being created for a given site throughout a sure interval of time.

Pro Tip: If accessible you must also pull the creator of the article throughout this course of for a separate use case which we are going to get to later on this article.

You can repeat this course of for all of your opponents and get the essential velocity metric to examine who’s profitable and dropping.

To go deeper and provide additional layers of perception, you possibly can also look at metrics such as phrase depend.

That not solely permits you to see how long each bit of content material is for a site on common but also estimate the cost a competitor is spending on every web page.

And that provides you an idea of how much you could have to spend to compete.

For instance, most freelance writers or writing services charge .25c -.30c per phrase to create a piece of content material.


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If you have a competitor site that has an common of 1,000 phrases per web page, you possibly can calculate that it cost them wherever from $250-$300 to create that content material on common.

Then you need to use that quantity to calculate what the overall cost can be to create the identical quantity of content material throughout the time interval you’re .

Using this data, you possibly can then create a nice-looking slide you can show the powers-that-be how you might be doing versus your opponents.

And ballpark how much it would cost to compete, subsequently making the case for funds, assets, and so forth.

The final product seems one thing like this:

Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You Should Care

Using the method above we will show that in a sure interval of time:


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  • The number of pages created.
  • The number of pages created per week or per 30 days on common.
  • The common phrase depend.
  • The common cost per web page.
  • The whole cost over the course of the interval of time you’re looking at.

This is a smart way to show the place you stand towards your opponents from a content material perspective, but also plan out how your content material program needs to form up to beat and compete.

Now for those who want to take it a step additional, you possibly can also look into what the writing and web optimization teams look like for a similar opponents to get a full image of how they’re structured.

To do that there are a couple of totally different paths you possibly can take.

As talked about earlier, if you’re ready to pull the authors from the site, you possibly can see what number of totally different people are writing for it and create a profile on how their workforce is structured.

The second path is to manually go by way of LinkedIn and seek for people inside their group that have “content,” “copywriter,” “SEO,” and so forth., of their titles and see what comes up.


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This will enable you to get essentially the most recent profile for the workforce.

If you have a list of authors from the customized extraction course of, you possibly can cross-reference them right here to see if there are any discrepancies.

Which provides you with additional perception into how their workforce is constructed out.

The third – and I’m not saying I condone this, or have accomplished this before – is to scrape your competitor’s firm LinkedIn profiles and collect the data rapidly for evaluation.

Again, I’m simply saying it’s potential.

After you run that course of you possibly can create a good visible that provides everybody a view of how your competitor’s teams are constructed that might look one thing like this:

Content Velocity: What It Is, How to Calculate It & Why You Should Care

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, not sufficient people talk about content material velocity on the whole.


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Everyone simply wants to create a bunch of high quality content material and simply keep doing that.

Very few organizations take the time to not solely look into what sorts of content material their competitors is creating but how much over a sure interval of time.

Figuring out content material velocity is time-consuming.

But it yields a plethora of precious information you can embody in many various use instances.

You have to absorb a lot of totally different data points, some could require some severe engineering muscle relying on how deep you want to go.

Figuring out what number of writers a competitor has on staff and the way usually articles are written is essential to measuring/predicting how much content material you need to create to compete for the matters you want to win on.

It isn’t nearly creating nice content material.

It’s about creating the identical quantity of nice content material as your opponents who’re profitable to take away market share and stay ahead within the long time period.


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More Resources:

Image Credits

All screenshots taken by creator, September 2020

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