Organizing Your Spreadsheet

At this point, I’m assuming that you have read over the user manual {PDF} of your audit and you have an idea of what the priority numbers mean and you are ready for actionable steps to move forward.

If that’s the case then continue reading below… if not and you want to walk you through the process then head over to the Foundation Videos in the Bonus Content.

It’s time to customize your spreadsheet to work for you.

The audit orders the URLs by priority. However, you will likely want to adjust that order to fit your editorial calendar. Here are some suggestions on how to arrange your spreadsheet.

It’s best to start out with four simple tasks.  Don’t overthink it as it really is as easy as 1 … 2 … 3 … 4. {pinky swear}

How To Organize Your Spreadsheet:

  1. Add ‘Month to Amplify’ and Categories.
  2. Filter current Month and only work on those posts.
  3. Identify Important Posts
  4. Create a Scoreboard

1. Add Month and Category

Organize your spreadsheet by adding the “month” and “category” or topic. Simplify the process by focusing on one month at a time.

Assign a “month to amplify” for each post. The month to amplify should be 2 months before the user will need that content.

  • For instance, if it’s on Father’s Day in June {6} then the month to amplify should be April {4}.

This way you only have to make the decision once and you no longer have to think ahead on what’s coming up next. Everything you need to amplify or fix for that month is in one place easily sorted.

Adding the “month to amplify” might feel too time consuming or not important. However, it is! So find the system that works for you so you can get the most out of your audit, quickly and efficiently.

Excel Tip: How to Add Month and Category to Spreadsheet

We have auto-populated as many months and categories as we could. However, you will most likely want to change them to better accommodate your business practices.

What Month Do I Pick? Find what month it’s relevant on Google Trend or Pinterest Trends. Add the ‘month to amplify’ 1 to 2 months before it trends.

Identify repetitive topics and add those to the “category” or topic column so you can sort by that topic to find trends, series and roundup post options.

For example, you can:

  • Priority: Add all of Priority #1 for a month, and then the next month all of Priority #2.
  • Topic: You can do all “back to school” topic by doing “control F” for PC and search “school”.
  • Month: Search for “December” to find Christmas or December listed posts.

Do whatever works for your personality, your time, and your skill level. Don’t over think it. {wink}

Need more clarification on categories or topics? Here you go.

Assign a “category” or topic for each post. Identify repetitive topics and add those to the “category” or topic column so you can sort by that topic to find trends, series and roundup post options.

Time saving tips for month and category.

The “category” column has a different purpose than how you use it on your site. {watch video} Use this column using terms that you commonly use so you can quickly sort common topics and interests for you and your team. Feel free to add sub-category options!

2. Filter Month to Amplify

Here’s where you start updating only the posts you need. First, sort your spreadsheet by “month to amplify” so you’re ONLY working on the posts assigned to that month and in their priority order.

For example, if it is June {6} then you will only work on posts assigned to June {6}. Yep, it is that easy. Instead of feeling like you have 300+ posts to work on… in reality you only have a handful. {high fives}

Click this link for more Excel tips and tricks if you want more detail.

3.  Identify Important Posts

As you work with the spreadsheet, identify URLs that make you money or increase your brand. This step is completely optional but a good one to do as you work on your spreadsheet each month to maximize your audit’s power.

Some of these important posts are:

  • lead magnets
  • income generators
  • important to your site
  • most popular posts 

You’ll want to flag each of those important posts by changing them to an odd Priority number like 3.1 that so you know that you manually changed it because it is important to you.

Spreadsheet Tip: You can even change the “Definitions” tab by adding rows and updating the key to what works best for you.

YOU know your data best.  For instance, there could be a rock star post in Priority #7 that you need to make sure you amplify and keep track of.  So might as well do that right off the bat.

Um… Laurie. Why would there be a rockstar post in Priority #7? Well, because this audit is prioritized according to potential to rank higher. NOT what’s already bringing you traffic or income. If you want to know what’s already ranking then sort the rank column lowest to highest.

You can find your highest pageview post in Google Analytics, but I’m sure as you’re browsing the spreadsheet they will pop out at you.  Simply change them as you see them.

4. Create a Scoreboard

Document and track in the audit spreadsheet major changes made for each URL to track and repeat successful strategies.

Find the URL you what to document then scroll all the way to the right where you’ll find the “Updated Date” and “Changes Made”. Fill in those fields any way you’d like.

Spreadsheet Tip: It’s best to keep all your data on each URL in the same place, if possible. Using your audit to track rank, updates, social amplification, etc is a great way to maximize the power of your audit.

Now go for it and have fun!

Bonus Video:

How to set up your spreadsheet for success.