Having a business blog (and posting to it regularly) is all the rage. A standard 86% of content marketers do. For those of you who don’t, it’s never too late to start. And for those of you who are blogs, maybe it’s time to update some of your older and outdated posts.
After all, who wants to read the old content? Definitely not your target audience. That’s why I’m going to let you in on a (not so) little secret: Updating is the key to attracting readers. Learn how to update your outdated blog posts.
How to give your outdated blog posts a makeover
For an effective blog to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website and help you develop your business, you need a library of useful and current articles.
You don’t need to take a bulldozer to all your old articles when they are updated. Some of them have great material that you don’t want (and shouldn’t) get rid of. This is why you may be able to work with what you have when updating an outdated blog post.
Here are four ways to give your outdated items some love.
1. Check the accuracy
Your first order of business is to make sure your articles are accurate. Something you wrote about five years ago might be totally inaccurate today. And if you are giving any advice or tips of any kind on your blog, updating for accuracy is extremely important.
For some Internet users, your blog is the gateway to your business. Your brand awareness machine, if you will. Articles filled with inaccuracies could damage the credibility of your business and end up costing you a potential customer.
Keep in mind that it is not enough to have accurate information if it is not up to date. You need the most recent studies to back up your claims in the article.
When browsing an obsolete article, check for and update things like:
- Current trends
- Figures and prices
2. Do some keyword research
You want people to find your articles, don’t you? Absolutely no questions asked. Otherwise, what is it for? Cue keyword research.
Maybe you optimized your article when you first wrote it. Maybe not. Either way, do some new research to find out if there are any new keywords to incorporate. Between the time you first posted it and now, new queries may have appeared.
If you’re familiar with search engine optimization (SEO), take a look at what the article is currently ranking for. What does the article do well? What could he do better?
If you are unfamiliar with keyword research, don’t worry. Familiarize yourself with the search engine optimization process. Sign up for SEO tools that will help you research related searched keywords. Watch informative videos and subscribe to SEO-related newsletters to stay on top of best practices.
3. Strengthen yourself
If you want to improve SEO and engage readers, consider writing longer, quality articles that completely cover a given topic.
According to Yoast, your articles must be more than 300 words (at the bare minimum). And high-quality articles of 1,000 words or more have the best chance of ranking well in Google. Hub Spot recommends 2,100 to 2,400 words.
Keep in mind that the “ideal” length for a blog post can vary depending on what you write. The number is not set in stone. But, it’s always a good idea to strengthen your articles.
Take a look at the word count of the current article. Is it a little thin? Missing opportunities to add more details? Think about what kind of new information you can add to it to increase that word count and make it full of useful information for your readers.
Be careful not to increase the number of words while chatting. Instead, add new details, tips, data, and even quotes that you would have want to see if you read the article.
In short: Add length to your articles, but don’t talk just for the sake of talking. To give value.
4. Update your visuals
You know what they say, behind every good blog post is a great visual (or something like that). Your article can have a featured image as well as an infographic or two. Or, you might not have any visuals in the article. Whatever the situation, think about what you could add to make the article stand out.
If you currently have visuals in the article, great. Regarding the image presented, consider:
- Get a more modern image
- Make sure you have the rights to use the image
- Resize the image to fit best practices
- Add appropriate alt text
Adding visuals, like infographics, to the article can divide the text and highlight important information. When updating or creating infographics, consider the following:
- Colors and brand style
- Sizing and compression
- What information you want to transmit
- How do you want to present the information
The catchy headlines, flow, design, and interesting information (e.g. stats) all make for a solid infographic. So if you update your visuals, see what else you can add to increase engagement.