7 Ways to Increase Traffic by Updating Old Blog Posts
Updating older blog posts and giving them fresh new content can be a key to unlocking more of your site’s potential. The competition for organic search results on Google continues to increase and keeping content fresh is super important to winning. Couple the creation of new content with the optimization of older articles and you can find real success with Google.
They say you should spend 20 percent of your time writing blog posts and 80 percent promoting your content. One thing that can cross over those boundaries a bit is updating old content. If you’ve been blogging for awhile, you don’t want to forget about all those old posts you published years ago. Take a little time every few months to go through and update old posts to provide fresh new content and improve SEO.
Why should you update old posts?
- It helps your domain authority if all the content on your site is doing well
- Edit outdated information
- Add new content
- Increase focus on targeted keywords
- Update expired links
- Edit pictures
- Add related content links to increase your internal linking strategy
How to Update Old Blog Posts
We all know keywords are important for SEO but if you started blogging years ago your older posts might not include important keywords. Keyword relavancy and competion change all the time, so it’s important to be continually reviewing your success. Research keywords that the page currently ranks for as well as tangential keywords that have attractive volume and competitive scores. Find 5-10 keywords you would like to target and then sprinkle them throughout your older blog post. Add them to the title, meta description, alt tags, and headings. Include them in new fresh openings, Frequently Asked Questions, and other added content.
Create Pinterest Friendly Images
Take your older photos and turn them into Pinterest friendly images. You especially want to do this if you were adding square or horizontal photos to your older blog posts. We all know that Pinterest recommends a 2:3 aspect ratio. The easiest way to do this is to use a free program like Canva or Picmonkey. Crop your image so it’s the recommended size of 735 x 1102 or create a collage putting two images together. Create a few different images that you can pin to Pinterest. Check out our tutorial for creating pinnable images.
Update or Add Pictures and Videos
If you’ve been blogging for a while, the chances that your previous photos are not quite up to your current standards and branding is likely pretty high. Updating a post is a perfect time to retake some photos. It’s also a great time to add a video to your most popular posts. Videos will help your readers, but will also help your search rankings, social media, and overall traffic.
Add Related Posts
You can also gain authority on Google by interlinking your posts together. Go through older posts and link to at least one related post. If you don’t have a related post, add it to your list of things to do:)
Lengthen Posts and Update Information
Add information to lengthen your post and check for outdated links. Google loves longer posts with useful information. Seek to add current and valuable information that your readers can benefit from. Also, make sure to proofread and check for grammatical errors.
A few ideas for new content
- Add bulleted lists that better describe steps or options available in your content
- Research what people are asking most commonly and add FAQs
- Refresh the opening paragraph(s) and make sure they are direct and keyword dense
- Add at least one heading and section that is new and fill it with unique and expert information
- Update the content to ensure the content will be obvious for EEAT (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness)
Delete Old Comments
As you’re updating old blog posts, take a little time to scroll down and read through the comments. Delete spam comments that might have made it through your filter. It’s also a good time to respond to any comments that you might have missed earlier.
Republish Old Blog Posts
When updating older posts, there are two schools of thought as to how to publish the new information.
- Update current post: This is the simplest method where you update the content and then just click the “Update” button to publish the fresh information to your existing page. This is the best method when your pages have had some success on social media, backlinks, or are otherwise utilized by your users. Keep all the relevant history intact and just freshen up the content.
- Publish as new: If your previous content has had very little engagement from backlinks, social media, Google, etc., you can re-publish the post as new. Freshen up the content and publish the post again so it comes to Google as new content, hits your front page, and goes out to your subscriber list again.
What posts should you update?
There are several factors to consider when identifying the right posts on your website to update:
Look at your website analytics to identify posts that have lost significant traffic in the past year or so. These posts were once popular with your audience but have lost visibility or rankings. Updating content on these types of posts will give it renewed potential to get back to the “good old days” of traffic.
Consider whether the post is still relevant to your audience. If the topic is outdated or no longer relevant, updating the post may not be worth the effort.
Analyze the post’s engagement metrics, such as social shares and comments, to identify which posts are performing well and have potential for even greater engagement with an update. If a post is not ranking well for ANY keyword, it needs to be either updated or deindexed / deleted. Content that doesn’t rank at all, or receives no traffic can hurt your site in many ways.
Use keyword research tools to identify which posts have lost keyword rankings recently. Updating these posts with fresh content and relevant keywords can help improve their search engine interest and overtime help it rank again and drive more traffic.
Evaluate the quality of the content itself. Posts that are poorly written, outdated, or contain errors are good candidates for updating as long as the other items in this list are good.
Summing it up
Updating old blog posts is a highly effective way to increase website traffic and engagement. By following the seven strategies outlined in this post, you can breathe new life into your old content and attract new readers to your website. With consistent effort, you can turn your blog into a valuable resource for your audience and in turn, increase your revenue!
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