How to update old SEO content to build better results

Content Marketing

Most people think that SEO content is all about constantly creating new ideas and topics.

But, if you’ve ever tried to do it, you’ll know it’s pretty hard.

Not enough people realise that you can actually get better results, and make your life easier by updating old SEO content to make it more relevant.

Updating old content can help you plug some gaps in your content marketing plan, and means you don’t have to worry about coming up with things to talk about all the time.

In this blog, we’ll talk through some quick and easy tips on how you can update your SEO content.


Identifying old content to update

Updating old content doesn’t just mean working through all your old blogs and updating them.

That’s a waste of time and not actually that beneficial.

You need to be strategic with the content you update.

There’s no need to go straight to your high performing blog posts.

If they still have good engagement and site views, messing with them could negatively impact their results. 

Look at your Google analytics (or whatever performance tool you’re using) and look for content that meets this criteria:

  • More than 6 months old that was getting a lot of traffic when you first published it, but has seen a big drop off in traffic and engagement
  • More than a year old and has never got any engagement
  • Any content that has suddenly seen an increase in traffic 

Once you’ve got an understanding of what content you want to update, and why, you can make a plan of how you’ll make changes. 


How to update old content

Before you go on changing content, you need to understand why you’re changing it. 

Do you want to drive more traffic to a low performing blog? 

Do you want to improve engagement levels? 

Does some of your research need updating to be relevant to the present day?

You need to ask yourself these questions so you know what you should focus on first. 

Have a look at these tips on how to update your content:

  • Change the headline to something more engaging
    • If the headline isn’t interesting, your readers aren’t likely to click on it. This can be disheartening, especially if you’ve spent a long time on the content itself 
    • If you find some of the blogs on your site aren’t performing well but are rich in content, try changing the headline first to see if it brings in more viewers 
  • Target a different keyword
    • It could be the keyword is too competitive for your site right now, or that you’d be better targeting a different, long-tail, keyword
    • By altering the keyword selection to something more focussed, you could help your content rank better
  • Add new images and alt text
    • Adding in extra media means your piece will be classed as ‘new’ on Google, putting it higher in search results 
  • Update with new stats and research
    • If your content features research that’s now out of date, see if you can update it with new facts and figures. You could also use new stats to create comparisons and make your content even more relevant and beneficial
    • Check your facts and research regularly to make sure they are still relevant to the topic you’re covering 
    • If your blogs have links that used to link to a supporting page but now show up as an error, you need to update these 
    • Tools such as Google Search Console find broken links for you, to save you from going through every link in a blog/on your site. All broken links will be highlighted for you then to delete/replace 
    • Or there’s W3C Link Checker which shows not only the broken link, but how to fix it 
    • This will optimise your site and provide the best experience possible for your audience. Updating links can boost engagement and traffic to your site 
  • Combine separate blogs that cover a similar topic 
    • Make a long-form piece of content using two old blog posts
    • This could be a combination of a high performing blog and one that doesn’t perform as well. This will redirect views from the low performing post to the new one 
    • This is a great way to make sure you’re not duplicating content, otherwise you’ll be punished and get negative results 


 What to do with your updated content

Now you’ve got this updated content you can start to repromote it as new.

Use your social media platforms and show it on your website’s homepage to let your readers and customers know you have fresh content available. 

 If you’ve updated the stats, all you need to do is republish it.

This will show how things have changed since the first blog and give your readers a deeper understanding of how things change over time, such as trends and SEO tips. 

If you’ve changed the heading, just republish like it’s a new blog.

Giving your blog posts a clear structure directs the reader through the text and allows them to find the sections they’re interested in. 

Keep an eye on your SEO stats.

However you track your content, it’s important that you do it regularly.

It shows you what type of content gets the best engagement.

If you’re planning on updating your content, check how the stats change from before and after the alterations.

It will give you a clearer indication of what your customers like and what Google is ranking high. 

If you’d like a free SEO assessment, get in touch today.

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