Making Old Content New Again for SEO
Creating and posting regular content is one way of building an SEO presence for your company. But creating new content is not the only way to help improve your SEO ranking. Another way is repurposing content in a way that doesn’t risk duplicate content penalties and content fatigue.
How long is the shelf life of an average blog post? A week? a month? If you’re talking about SEO, like we often do, things change regularly. Something you wrote last month might not be relevant now. So, what happens to the old stuff? It sits on your blog gathering virtual dust, not getting clicks or links. Well, not anymore…
Just Give it a Fresh Coat of Paint
- Refresh dated content – The idea that old content should be consigned to the trash is pretty common place. But actually, with some work, old content can be recycled into something useful again. Some topics are evergreen and don’t require a full rewrite to refresh its relevancy. For example, an article on AdWords Ad creation best practices from August 2016 will be different to August 2015, especially since Google have launched extended ad texts. However, much of the advice given will still be relevant, even if technical details, like ad text length, have changed. This kind of material is the perfect candidate for an update. The old post may have generated inbound links (read: Google love). By modifying the post and republishing, you don’t lose those votes of confidences from other websites.
- Promote evergreen content – Some content you create will not have an expiration date. If you’ve written something on a topic that is still relevant, then why not promote it again. Share the content on social media, or via email. Don’t be dishonest and pretend it’s new. Just make sure that it’s still factually correct, the hyperlinks still work, and then get tweeting. Be careful to leave enough time from when you first publish the content, to when you start promoting it again. We would recommend not plugging an old post again unless it’s been a year since first publishing.
- Convert old content into something different – Similar to the first point, when you create a piece of content don’t be afraid to repurpose it. If you spent time and money creating a whitepaper, or video, then why not turn it into a series of blog posts or an infographic? Changing the format the content is presented in can make it appeal to a different type of customer, or even into a different place in your marketing funnel, as well as giving it an update.
The Don’ts of Repurposing Content
Now that we’ve shown you ways that repurposing content works, let’s talk about what you need to avoid.
First, you don’t want to have the same piece of content (or something that’s substantially the same) republished on your website or blog. Google defines duplicate content as “substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely matches other content or are appreciably similar.” This is why you don’t want to publish a blog post and then post it as a LinkedIn article.
Second, don’t ignore any feedback you received on the old content. Feedback can be comments, forum discussions or other ways your audience has voiced their opinion. Refreshing the post and addressing negative or constructive criticism demonstrates you’re listening. Now you have the chance to add supporting evidence or change your mind.
Third, when repurposing content, choose your strongest posts or pages rather than those pieces which landed with a thud. The only caveat is material vitally important to your business. Giving it a refresh may help it get better traction. Remember, it’s the web. Nothing is set in stone.
Have you done anything interesting with your old content? We’d love to hear your ideas for repurposing content.
How can we help?
Are you building content to help your SEO? Do you have ideas for repurposing content?
We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.