With a new year comes this nagging feeling that all the content on your website from 2018 and earlier is simply too old and of no use anymore. It’s a feeling that happens every year but it can be tough to look at blog posts you’ve spent countless hours on and simply cast them aside.
While the information in your post might be old, it doesn’t mean that it’s worthless.
What’s old is new again
Imagine this. Two years ago, you wrote a blog post proclaiming that the sky is blue. Now, do you throw the whole post away because it was written two years ago? No.
What you wrote is still relevant. Maybe there’s been a new development scientifically in the past two years; maybe slang has changed from what was written in that post. However, the basic premise of the post, “The sky is blue,” is still relevant.
What you should do instead is look at that post and find ways to update it. Maybe you cite a new source that was written in 2019. Maybe you add details of a recent news story about the sky being blue. This article from The Sun looks at why the sky looks blue to us and whether the sky is blue on other planets.
There are ways to make what you wrote new again and sometimes, it’s as easy as writing “…for 2020” at the end of your title.
Fix broken links
While you’re fixing your old content be sure to take a look at any links you have within your writing. As times change, websites come and go and links expire. Broken links are a sure way to get your content kicked to the bottom of a Google Search. If your website becomes known for broken links, your entire site could get kicked to the bottom of a Google Search.
And while you’re at it, see if there are any opportunities to add backlinks. Backlinks are links to previous articles on your blog. The cool thing about updating old content to be new again is you have a whole new pool of backlinks to choose from.
Backlinks are one of the items Google looks at when it comes up with search results. They’re a good thing.
Add new images, infographics or videos
As your creative juices are flowing, you may also find new ways to visually show your point. Add a new image to your blog post to make it look fresher or create an infographic. Maybe you recently posted a YouTube video that shows what you’re talking about. Link to that video, or better yet, add it to the top of your post.
New media is a great way to make your old blog post look fresh.
Once you’ve done all that, don’t update, but republish. When you update a blog post, that post still has the original publication date of 2018. When you republish, you’re also adding a new, more up to date publication date.
Don’t wait until next year
While the new year is usually what prompts you to start looking back at your content and wondering if it’s out of date, don’t wait so long. Put it on your calendar to go back through your content and check links, add backlinks and possibly refresh every six months.
If you stay on top of your content, Google’s Search Engine is going to notice. Speaking of Google, if you haven’t read our previous post about Google’s Search Journey you really should. Learn how to use Google’s algorithm to your advantage!
Written by Erika Towne