By Jessie Festa. This episode on updating old blog content contains affiliate links to trusted partners I think you’ll love!
- why updating website content regularly is important
- how to find old website content to refresh
- how to evaluate website content so that you choose the best posts to update
- a step-by-step website content update process that can lead to more traffic
- and more!
How To Update Website Content [Podcast Episode Audio]
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Bonus Tip: 14 Quick Ways To Grow Your Blog [Video]
Updating old content for SEO can lead to a quick boost in blog traffic — though it isn’t your only option.
In fact, the above video shares 14 quick ways to grow your blog.
I highly recommend adding a few of the above-mentioned tactics to your blogging workflow!
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Update Content On Your Blog Easier With These Helpful Tools
Curious how to update content on a website? You’re in luck! Updating content is faster and easier with:
Travel Blog Prosperity. TBP is an online membership dedicated to helping travel and lifestyle bloggers grow their traffic and income through a mix of education, collaboration, and community support. The membership includes instant access to over $4,000 in courses and bonuses. While doors are technically closed, you can snag your first month for just $9 by emailing me at jessie (at) jessieonajourney (dot) com. New members only and no minimum commitment required.
Google Search Console. This free tool provides all of the information needed to properly update a blog post and optimize it for traffic.
Keysearch (snag 20% off with code JESSIEONAJOURNEY). Whether you’re creating new content or updating an old blog post, doing keyword research and optimizing content for SEO can help you rank. Keysearch is my absolute favorite tool for this, as it provides all of the information you need to help your post rank higher in organic search results.
Canva. Including opt-in freebies like a free resource library or a free challenge in a blog post can help increase audience engagement, which is great for SEO. And if you need help, Canva is a graphic design tool that can help you bring your opt-in freebie ideas to life. They’ve got templates for workbooks, lead magnet templates, ebooks, printables, and more.
ConvertKit. A feature-rich yet user-friendly email marketing platform made by bloggers for bloggers. My affiliate link gets you a 30-day free trial — no credit card required! Alternatively, you can join their free plan here.
Interact. My favorite platform for creating fun, beautiful,and interactive quizzes that grow your email list and increase audience engagement on your blog content.
Redirection. If you change any URLs while updating your blog content, make sure to redirect them to another live post or page using this free plugin.
Properly Create & Update Blog Content With These Helpful Past Episodes:
How To Update Website Content For Increased Traffic [Episode Transcript]
As bloggers, we often focus so much on creating new content that we neglect our old content; but, did you know that updating old blog posts for SEO and giving them a refresh can lead to a big boost in traffic?
This is just one reason to update your website content, which we’ll dive into more in this episode.
But first, I want to direct your attention to the show notes, where I’ve shared a link to my free Travel Blogger Resource Library.
Inside you’ll snag access to 45+ resources from cheat sheets to workbooks to workshops to video tutorials that can help truly turn your blog into a profitable business – including a Content Creation & Promotion Trello Board that you can use for yourself!
I’m all about implementation and I really want to make sure you don’t just listen to the episode and forget about it, but that you actually use what I share to make your blogging life easier.
Feel free to even pause this episode to go grab those resources.
You back? Then let’s dive in, starting with why you should update your website content.
Why You Should Update Your Website Content
First off, as mentioned previously, revamping your old content can help bring in more traffic.
It’s also faster to update old content than to create a post from scratch — meaning you can grow your blog traffic with less effort.
Google Search Console also provides data you can use to strategically update your old content — so there is no need to wonder what you maybe should include.
Okay, this is all great, but you may be wondering:
How do I actually update my website content?
Let’s go over a step-by-step process for updating old blog posts right now.
Website Content Update Process
Keep in mind, there are a number of different ways to go about this. In this episode, I’ll be sharing one of my favorite methods.
Also note that as this episode is a bit more technical, I’ll be including some screenshots in the show notes for clarity.
Step #1: Decide which old blog post you want to update
When deciding which posts to update, consider which posts….
- Bring you traffic but that haven’t been updated in a while
- Rank on the top of the 2nd page or middle/bottom of the first page in Google search results that will see noticeable traffic if improved
- Bring you income — such as posts optimized for affiliate marketing
- Are relevant to your blog, but that you wrote before you understood SEO
- Have historically brought you traffic but that have seen a dip
That last point is what we’ll be focusing on for this episode on updating web content.
Step #2: See what blog content is losing traffic
This is where things get technical.
You’ll want to login to your Google Search Console and in the “Search Results” section go to Date -> Compare -> Compare last 28 days year over year.
Note: You’re welcome to compare another date range if that works better for your blog update strategy and the post you’re researching.
Okay, so from there you’ll click “Apply” to be shown a ton of data.
Make sure you’re in the “Pages” tab to be shown a comparison of your blog posts traffic, impressions, click-through-rate, and average position in Google search results in the last 28 days this year vs the same timeframe last year.
You’ll be able to easily see which posts have lost traffic and ranking — so that you can make changes to help improve the content and get those numbers back on track.
Step #3: Discover relevant queries with traffic potential
From where you left off in the Pages tab, click into an article you’d like to update to see what relevant queries were bringing the most traffic before.
Step #4: Research these queries in an incognito window
You want to try to determine what is now making the articles ranking above you for specific search terms better than yours.
- Does your blog post have out-of-date or incorrect information?
- Are there broken links in your article?
- Do these other articles answer questions that your article doesn’t?
- Do these articles include information or assets that help readers take action — such as quizzes, diagrams, or trail maps in a hiking article?
- Could you update the meta title and description to be more enticing and improve CTR?
- Could you write the post in a more easy-to-follow format — such as by grouping items in list posts?
For example, when researching “Long Island hiking trails” – a keyword that once brought me lots of traffic but has taken a dip – a few things I noticed about the blog posts now ranking above me include that these posts:
- were recently published/updated
- had better organization (Easy, Moderate, Difficult — vs all in same list)
- had more in-depth public transportation directions
A quick note here:
Doing this research is important for any blog post you decide to write or update. You always want to try to have the absolute best and most helpful content that exists on a topic.
Step #5: Consider if there are additional keywords you can add to the post you’re updating
Remember, when writing a blog post you’re not just trying to rank for your main keyword, but for many different keywords.
As with the previous step, you always want to include additional keywords for any blog post you write or revise.
To do this:
Research the article you want to update in Google Search Console by going to “Search Results” and using the Page filter. You’ll be able to enter the URL of the blog post you’re researching.
Once filtered, export the keywords to a spreadsheet to easily cull your keyword list and get rid of irrelevant keywords — like misspelled keywords and keywords that don’t relate to your specific blog post.
For example, in my Long Island hiking trails blog post, a few irrelevant keywords that came up for me during my Google Search Console research were “famous Long Islanders” and “Long Island bike trails map.”
Once you’ve culled your list:
1) See which of these keywords are already in your post
2) With the keywords that are left, prioritize by position + impressions
- Why? You’ll see much more traffic moving a blog post up from position 5 to 3 then you will from 50 to 45
- Impressions matter because if that number is really low it’s likely nobody is really searching that keyword
3) Add them into your post — by simply adding them in or by creating new sections and answering new questions where it makes sense
- Just make sure not to delete any keywords you already had
4) For any keyword you really want to optimize for, add it as a sub-heading and create a section for it
You might also do this if you see a bunch of keywords answering a question you haven’t answered yet. From my own research with the Long Island hiking trails post, some examples of keywords/keyword groupings that could become their own sections include:
- Hiking near Long Island / hikes near Long Island could be a section of bonus hiking suggestions nearby
- Best places to walk on Long Island / walking trails on Long Island / places to walk on long Island could be a section on leisurely walking paths
- Hiking trails on Long Island with waterfalls could be a section sharing trails that fit into this category
5) For keywords that have high impressions but a low click through rate (CTR), consider adding them to your meta title and/or description
This can help increase traffic as loads of people will be searching these terms – and then seeing them parrotted back to them in your blog post’s search result.
Step #6: Clean up the updated blog post
Now that you’ve done the technical research for updating your old blog content for SEO and you’ve added keywords and new sections and answered new questions, you want to clean it up by doing things like:
- Cleaning up any broken links or images
- Updating any outdated or incorrect information
- Addressing additional questions answered by other posts ranking for your keyword(s)
- Adding pertinent sections based on your keyword research
- Reorganizing the post if necessary to make it more logical
You also want to focus on…
Step #7: Work to increase audience engagement in your updated content
You want people to read, interact, and share. A few ideas for doing this include:
- Delivering the content in a clear, logical, and easy-to-read manner
- Creating in-depth content that answers reader questions
- Adding helpful free resources, visuals, and quizzes that make content more actionable
- Adding social media sharing buttons, pins, and clickable Tweets
- Keeping user experience in mind — like making the content scannable with short paragraphs and sub-headings, ensuring the page loads fast scannable, and including a table of contents for easy navigation
Step #8: Optimize your updated blog post for conversions
- Did you add affiliate links where appropriate?
- Are there any missed opportunities for affiliate links?
- Did you mention your own relevant digital products or services?
- Did you promote an opt-in freebie to grow your email list with targeted subscribers?
Pro tip here:
I also recommend making it a habit to go in and update any blog post bringing in substantial traffic for conversions.
If you’ve never done this, update your blogging schedule and set aside a full day to update all of your traffic-generating posts so that you’re getting your calls-to-action in front of people already coming to your site.
Step #9: Republish your old content
Along with updating and/or adding to your content, make sure to:
1) Update the date of the blog post so that search engines and readers know it’s updated
- You should only update the date if you’ve actually updated the content
2) If you must update the URL, do a 301 redirect (you can use the free Redirection plugin) and resubmit the updated post to Google in Google Search Console
- Note that if the blog post is ranking well in search results and bringing in traffic, it’s typically best not to update the URL
3) Build internal and external backlinks to the post to help give it a boost
4) Share via social media, Google Web Stories, email, etc
Alright now I hope you enjoyed this episode. I hope you feel inspired and empowered to use Google Search Console to update your blog content to help grow your traffic.
As I said before, this is just one way to use Google Search Console to update old blog content for SEO. I actually have a course within my Travel Blog Prosperity membership that goes over this more in-depth and includes other ideas and tips for updating website content.
Doors to the membership are technically closed; however, if you’d like to check it out just send me an email to [email protected] and I’ll create a coupon for you to get your first month of Travel Blog Prosperity for just $9 to try out. Just note that this offer is for new members only.
Additionally, don’t forget to grab access to the free travel blogging resource library. There are a ton of resources in there on growing your community and increasing your blogging profits.
And of course, make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss future episodes sharing these bite-sized strategies for bloggers who want to turn their blogs into profitable full-time businesses.
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