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Definition

A ROT analysis helps identify content that is redundant, outdated, or trivial. By checking against analytics data, user needs and user research, it allows Directorates-General to analyse further the relevance of their content for users.

The analysis informs decisions about whether to keep, edit  or delete content.

Redundant content

Definition

Redundant content is content that is duplicated within the site or on other sites.

Why should redundant content be removed?

Duplicated content

  • confuses rather than helps users
  • adds to site maintenance
  • increases translation costs

Duplicated content should therefore be deleted.

How do you flag redundant content?

For each item in the content inventory:

  1. If content is redundant and has to be deleted: indicate "Yes" in column "K".
  2. If content is not redundant and/or should be kept : indicate "No" in column "K".

Out-of-date content

Definition

Out-of-date content may include old information, an old event, or simply an old article with data that is no longer valid. 

Why should out-of-date content be removed?

Out-of-date content can be confusing, misleading and costly to maintain.

This is the area that may yield the greatest short-term results in terms of rationalising content.

How do you identify out-of-date content?

For each item in the content inventory:

  1. Identify content that is out of date, by checking for example the publication date, or checking content to establish if it is no longer current and accurate.
  2. For each piece of content that is out of date, indicate "Yes" in column "L".

Recommendation

It is recommended to establish rules for automatically archiving items such as news, events, publications. For example, introduce a rule that the website only offers news and events from the current and the previous year.

Trivial

Definition

Trivial refers to content that is irrelevant and/or unnecessary.

Why should out-of-date content be removed?

Cutting trivial content makes websites more relevant and cost effective.

How do you identify out-of-date content?

In order to distinguish the relevant content from the trivial content, 3 sources of information should be used:

  • analytics data: Good content is accessed frequently by end-users
  • users’ needs: Good content matches user needs, identified for example during the class identification process
  • organisational goals : Good content matches organisation goals

Site owners are advised to focus on identifying redundant and outdated content. DG Communication 'Europa Web Communication' (COMM B3) can provide additional guidance on how to identify, assess and reduce trivial content.

Next steps

Once content has been analysed, the results should be used to delete/archive or reorganise/transform content on the website.

Contact and support

If you require further assistance, please contact:

Comm Europa Management

European Commission
DG Communication 
Unit B.3 
Europa Web Communication 

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The Europa Web Guide is the official rulebook for the European Commission's web presence, covering editorial, legal, technical, visual and contractual aspects.
All European Commission web sites must observe the rules and guidelines it contains.
Web practitioners are invited to observe its contents and keep abreast of updates. More information about the web guide.