Why You Should Refresh Old Content and How To Do It

Have you ever watched Antique Roadshow? People come on the show with things they’ve found in their attics, basements, or at some estate sale. An appraiser looks at what previously seems like junk and tells them that it’s worth millions. Happiness ensues. 

Your old blog content is like that stuff wasting away in the attic. You don’t even know what you have. Refreshing your old content could drive tons more traffic to your website, potentially resulting in sales. This post explains why you should refresh old content and how to do it.

Why Refresh Old Content?

Refreshing a piece of content that’s performed well in the past will bring it back to life in search and keep it relevant to those who need the information. So, you’ll want to know when to update content to get all the benefits.

Reasons to refresh old content include:

  • Improve Search Engine Rankings. Search engines favor fresh and updated content. Updating old blog content can improve your search engine rankings and attract more traffic to your website.
  • Include Updates. Chances are you included data and links in the piece that needs updating. A refresh allows you to republish the piece on your site while making it relevant again.
  • Fix Issues. When you refresh a post, you may discover issues you need to correct. For example, broken links, improper headers, or irrelevant photos. Some of these issues may be impacting your search results. Repairing them will help the post and your overall site in search.
  • Apply New Knowledge. Your writing and understanding of just about any issue improves with time. Updating or rewriting content on your website lets you offer this new knowledge to your audience.
  • Identifying Opportunities. Refreshing also allows you to link to more recent posts on your site that are relevant to the piece, and it may help you think of ideas for content that your site needs.
  • Increase engagement. Refreshing old content can provide an opportunity to improve the readability and engagement of your blog post. You can update the formatting, add images or videos, and make the content more visually appealing.
  • Follow Best Practices. Best practices in search change often. Refreshing posts help you strategically update them so they adhere to these changes.
  • Serve Readers. The most crucial reason to refresh blog posts is to provide readers with the most up-to-date information they need to know in your content niche. After all, serving your readers is why you have a blog in the first place.
  • Save Time. Creating new content from scratch takes a lot of time and effort. Refreshing old content allows you to update existing content and provide a fresh perspective without starting from scratch.
person using iMac
Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

How to Refresh Old Blog Content

As with most things, there’s probably more than one way to go about refreshing blog content. Below is how to ensure your refreshes are comprehensive and you use your valuable time effectively.

Perform a Content Audit

It would be easy to sit down and update blog posts willy-nilly, but there’s a more strategic way to go about it. By performing a content audit, you’ll get a complete picture of what’s on your site, the data surrounding every piece, and which posts you should update to get the most out of your content.

Think Strategically About Keywords

When you log onto a post to update, the first thing to consider is the keywords. Do some research to determine if those keywords still serve you well or if you need to update them. If you update them, you should refocus the content on the updated keywords. If you don’t, make sure you’ve used the keywords appropriately in the post.

Revise On-Page SEO

I would almost guarantee you need to update the SEO on any blog post you refresh. That’s because SEO practices change. Update your SEO title tag, meta description, post title, and subheading to adhere to the most up-to-date SEO practices. 

Update the Content

Go through the piece to make sure the examples are still relevant — update statistics with the most current data you can find. 

Add new insights, opinions, or examples to provide a fresh perspective on the topic. Share new research or findings that have emerged since the original post was published.

Ensure links work and go to the most relevant posts. And, of course, make the post clean and well-edited with updated examples.

Also, while updating the post’s content, don’t forget to revise the call-to-action if necessary. Be sure to follow best practices for writing CTAs.

Improve Readability

Do you ever see a post on your site and wonder what you were thinking? No one wants to read big, complex blocks of text. After you update the content, make sure it’s visually easy to read. Break up large paragraphs, add subheads, use bullet points, and improve the overall formatting. 

Refresh Images

There are a couple of reasons to change the image each time you update a blog post. First, to ensure that the image is compressed and isn’t bogging down the site. Huge images bog down your site and make search engines ding it. Second, visual appeals change rapidly. People look at images first, so I want to ensure that it best reflects the content in a way they’ll relate to now.

In addition to updating photos, consider whether the post could benefit from a graphic or video. Adding this type of visual content will likely help a post perform better in search and make it more appealing to your audience.

And, with any image, be sure to have proper alt text, making it accessible.

Republish the Post

Once you make all the updates your post needs, it’s time to republish it with the current date. People look at the post’s date to determine if they’re still relevant, so you want to be sure not to just save the old post. I recommend a mix of post refreshes and new content. Do what makes the most sense for your site, but be sure everyone benefits from your older content.

What to Do After Refreshing Content

Your work isn’t done after you refresh and republish old content. Taking the next steps is essential to help your refreshed post get noticed.

Promote the Updated Content

Once you’ve refreshed your content, promote it to your audience through social media, email newsletters, or other channels. Encourage your readers to share it with others who might find it useful.

Share on Social

Share teasers, snippets, and quotes from the updated post on your social media channels. Use relevant hashtags and tag people or brands you mentioned to increase visibility and engagement.

Repurpose Content

You’ll get more from your blog post by refreshing it, but you can take it a step further and get the most from your efforts.

Convert your blog post into different formats, such as videos, infographics, or podcasts, to reach a new audience and provide more value to your readers.

Engage with Others

Monitor and respond to comments on or shares of your post. Be sure to answer any questions your audience asks and just thank them for sharing. Engaging with your readers can help build relationships and encourage them to continue reading and sharing your content.

Refreshing Old Content

Don’t leave old content languishing in your virtual attic. Content that was once valuable to your audience can be again. And you want to get the most from all of your content efforts. Want Content Journey’s expert team to help you with blog content creation and revision? Book a call today.

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