To stay ahead of the competition and to consistently improve the traffic coming to your site via Google, it’s incredibly important to regularly refresh the content on your site. But what exactly is “content refreshing”?
In short, content refreshing is the process of regularly updating the information on your top web page. Either improving the content or updating outdated information. All of this will maintain a healthy ranking on Google and improve your visitors’ experience.
But what’s involved in a content refresh? How should you approach a refresh and what could you do to improve your website content? Is all of this really necessary?
In this article, I’m going to cover how to approach a content refresh. The things you should look for when refreshing your site’s content, and why it’s important.
What is Content Refreshing?
Content refreshing is updating your website content regularly.
It’s the equivalent of giving your home a spring clean. A fresh coat of paint and a couple of fixes to ensure everything is working as it should.
But why is it so important? Simple. Google likes fresh content. Pages that haven’t been updated in a while are likely to fall in Google rankings, simply because Google deems these articles as outdated. Especially if you’re publishing content with a competitive keyword.
Refreshing also helps you keep up with your competitors, ensuring you’re providing the most valuable and up-to-date information.
But how should you approach a content refresh?
How Should You Approach a Content Refresh?
Choose the pages you want to refresh
If you only have a small number of pages, you can list each page as one to potentially refresh.
However, if you have hundreds of articles on your site, you should look into which pages are performing the best — a quick look at your site’s Google Search Console statistics will show you which pages are receiving the most traffic. Start by listing your 10 best-performing pages (you can add more as you go) and begin the refresh process.
Fact-check the article
Start by ensuring all of the information in your articles is correct.
Look for important information, such as statistics, product information, etc., and check to see if any information is outdated.
Look into more recent studies to see if you should include more relevant statistics in your piece.
Go through your top blog pages one by one and look for competitors who’ve written similar articles.
For each article, find the top 5 or more articles that cover the same topic and target the same keyword as your article and look for areas where your competitors are doing better.
The idea here isn’t necessarily to directly copy your competitors’ content, but by assessing multiple competing articles, you can gauge an idea of what information is more popular and if there are any important subtopics that you should cover in your article.
Find other areas that require updates
Look for areas where you feel the content could be updated. For example, you could look to change some oddly-worded sentences, include more power words, change graphics, include more statistics, add tables, update your page title…you get the picture.
Essentially, you want to pick around 2 to 3 areas of each page where you feel the content could be improved.
You can base this on your instinct — if something sounds odd or doesn’t look good to you, update it. Or you can base your changes on your competitor research.
Proceed to refresh your content
Once you’ve fact-checked your articles and noted down a few areas that require it, you should begin updating your articles.
Copy the areas of your article that need refreshing into a new document, make your changes, and then paste the updated areas back into your article.
Always ensure the changes you make align with the rest of your article. For instance, if you change a statistic in the introduction of your article, ensure that the same statistic is updated in every other area of your article where it is mentioned.
Schedule regular refreshes
Ideally, you should try to refresh your top pages monthly or every other month — this largely depends on the amount of time you have to spend updating your content.
Depending on the keyword that you’re targeting, you may want to update your articles less regularly, as the topic you’re writing for may be less competitive. Nevertheless, you should schedule dates throughout the year when you’ll assess your articles for areas of improvement.
Should You Update Your Content Titles & Meta Descriptions?
Only if necessary. If your article isn’t currently ranked on the first page of Google’s search results, then I’d encourage you to experiment with new titles and meta descriptions for each of your pages.
However, if your article is ranked fairly high on the first page of Google (let’s say at 3rd or below), then I would be cautious when changing your title, as a small change may mean you lose page rankings, but it may be worth it if you have an idea you think would work a lot better.
If your article is ranked at #1 or #2 on Google, don’t bother changing your title or meta description. As the old saying goes, don’t try to fix something that isn’t broken. Your page title is likely doing a good job, and changing it would likely only have a negative impact.
That said, you should check your page rankings regularly to see if your page is being outranked, and if so, then it would make more sense to attempt a title and meta description update.
What Changes Will You Make to Your Website Content?
Have you got any ideas on how you’ll change the content on your website?
Let us know what changes you’re making and how you’ll go about them in the comments section below.
If you’re looking for more information on how to improve your website or your digital marketing strategy, check out the latest articles on the Intentionally Inspirational blog.
Written by Lewis James