Almost 15 years ago, corporate blogs became big. They were seen as a way to build traffic to your main website and generate sales. It was far too easy for people to jump on the bandwagon. Back then, however, quality didn’t play such a key role. Instead, writers would focus more on the bulk of the keywords. We’re now making our way towards 2019 and a lot has changed. We know better, but many websites fail to realise that this old content is still lurking. So, what do you do with your old blog posts? Should they just sit there?
What to do with your Old Blog Posts
On many websites, the number of pages biggest reason to contemplate improving or reducing old content. If previous writers chose quantity over quality, there will be a lot of buried content. However, content purging can help to improve the efficiency of your crawl. With too much evergreen content for Google to sift through, it will spend far less time on your website in the future.
Where to Begin: Inventory
You should begin by going through all of your known content. A list of URLs and coordinating metadata is quite helpful for evaluating and documenting. This could simply depend on your content management system. Alternatively, URLs can be obtained from a mix of Google analytics, webmaster tools and more. It is also good to do a full crawl of your blog to see what the linking structure looks like and how it differs from your CMS.
Once you know what you have, it is time to assess the content and decide what is worth keeping. Ask yourself whether the users still find the content helpful or entertaining. You should also question whether it benefits your organic ranking, traffic or backings. You may find that some old content is doing a good job of driving conversions. Also, any content that helps establish branding or can build topical authority is great for any website.
It is important to make sure that the content is any good. If it makes no sense or if filled with grammatical errors, then it may not be worth keeping. The same goes for any content that is irrelevant. If it is no use to your audience or industry, then why hold onto them?
Finally, check if it’s causing any issues. If there is any plagiarised text, duplicate content, or more, then you may want it gone. An assessment is good for finding posts that target the same topic. From here, you can create lists of “keep” and “don’t keep”. The “don’t keep” pile can be 301 redirected to either the most relevant article or the blog homepage.
What to do with the posts you Keep
Now it’s time to sort through your pile of “keep” posts. All of this content has some sort of value. You now need to make the most of that value by improving, expanding, updating and promoting.
You can begin by making improvements in targeting, grammar and the general writing style. The blog must have a clear point about the topic and terms. Once all is in good shape, add technical improvements like relevant interlinking or schema markup. You may also need to add visual improvements such as line breaks or imagery. This can improve user experience, keeping people on the page longer.
Expand or Update
Another way to gain value is to repurpose or update information to make old content fresh again. Business bloggers that update old posts are 74 per cent more likely to report strong results. A few ways to update your old posts would be to explore a new take on its original thesis, add new data, recent developments or a change of opinion.
If you have invested time and resources into content creation and optimisation, it makes sense to get more people seeing it. This can be done in many ways, including sharing and resharing on your branded social channels. You could even create external promotions through outreach!
Once you have done all this, you should keep an eye on the effect these changes are having. The most significant measure of success is organic traffic. Even if the blog is designed for lead generation or other specific goals, the number of readers should correlate with the content success by other measures too. You can use Google Analytics to help track this.
It is also good to keep an eye on organic rankings. This can give you an early glimpse as to whether a piece is gaining traction regarding a particular topic before it is successful enough to earn organic traffic with those terms.
All of these changes will likely take a few months to be arranged and ranked by Google. It’s important to be patient and monitor, expand and update to give it a much-deserved chance to be seen. If you could do with assistance with your content, then let the experts do the job for you. Search and More are here to keep your business flourishing online. To learn more about our services, get in touch.