Updates are necessary every now and again, so why should your blog posts be any different? Not only is this important to ensure that your content remains up to date and original, but to sustain your website’s SEO efforts as best you can.

Why should you update your old content?

One of the biggest benefits of SEO is that, when used effectively, it can help you gain more traffic to your website, but if you’ve been uploading content to your blog for some time, it’s likely that a lot of your older posts will be outdated. You should never hide under the impression that none of your visitors will see them. On the contrary, thanks to your SEO, someone could stumble upon a blog post you wrote years ago, and if they fail to notice the time stamp of the post, they may believe that what they’re reading is the most up to date information out there. 

Reviving some of your most popular posts will not only bring more traffic to the site but extend the quality of your content. These posts are referred to as evergreen posts and are too often overlooked, even by the most popular bloggers with years of experience.

What you need to consider

Don’t panic; you’re not going to need to spend time updating all of your old blog posts. First, you need to identify which are worthy of becoming evergreen as it is these that you will update. The most effective way to do this is by installing analytics software that will assess your inbound links, metrics, social shares, traffics and keywords and identify whether the use of certain keywords will allow you improve your overall ranking system.

You’ll also need to consider how relevant the content of these posts is right now. If you believe a blog post to be outdated, updating it (rather than starting from scratch) will keep you in favour with Google – a site that tends to have a strong stance on duplicate content.

Following the right steps

  1. Same post, same URL

Even if you’re changing the content of the post, it’s important that you make sure it has the same URL rather than publishing an additional post to your blog.

  1. Keep the title’s keywords

Don’t change the title of the blog too drastically from the original. The URL may be the most important aspect, but the title should include the same keywords to keep your SEO consistent.

  1. Add an editor’s note

This should be done for reader transparency. Adding it to the end of your article is the best way to ensure it will be seen.

  1. Accurate content

Delete anything that is no longer relevant to the current date and fill in the blanks.

  1. Optimise the meta description

While meta descriptions do not affect the ranking of your content, it’s important that they remain relevant and are an accurate reflection of the post’s content. Making your meta description catchy can attract readers.

  1. Track the post’s performance

Taking note of how well the original post performed will make it easier for you to see where you need to edit if you need to do the same in the future.