Hoarding is a compulsive disorder that is characterized by one’s difficulty in discarding or releasing possessions that others may deem worthless. Gradually but surely, the hoarding phenomenon has found its way into blogs as “content hoarding”. Content hoarders keep outdated blog posts, research papers and content that is of no value in their blog sites. With the cutthroat completion that exists in the battle for Google rankings, content hoarding is definitely one of the cardinal sins that a blogger can commit – it is guaranteed to relegate your rankings to the bottom. At best, content hoarding will bring your standing with Google into disrepute, and this of course, translates to massive loss of client confidence in your product.
Hoarded content is characterized by a high frequency of bounce rates and low clicks. Businesses that keep archaic blog posts with outdated content face the very real risk of going under, more so if the business entails fully marketing their products digitally. The reason for this is simple: Google as well as users are more inclined towards fresh blog posts and news. It is quite easy for any user to verify whether your content is fresh or stale. To this end, Google is keen to show when your content was created in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). A poor showing means that your organic visits will definitely be hurt, and your overall authority with Google will suffer. Most users determine the validity of blog posts based on the latest algorithm update from Google. If say, they notice that the content on your blog is several years old, they will assume that it is outdated and therefore not of much use to them. This will be the only reason they move on to a site that is regularly updated – one that they perceive as having fresh, valid information. Of course, the less people visit your site, the more it will drop in rankings – Google works under the assumption that sites that are not frequently clicked on contain information that is outdated, and content that is stale and worthless.
Cleaning outdated content from your blog is simple. Begin by determining whether you are actually a content hoarder. To do this, visit your blog and find out the “age’’ of the news features and posts on the blog. If you realize that it has not been updated for say, 3 or 4 years, then you may want to consider carrying out a content audit with a view to cleaning up the blog by ridding it of all the useless junk content. To do this effectively, work out the number of your posts that have received an organic visit in the last 3 months. Posts that have not had any visit within this period are not worth keeping, as users perceive them to be old, invalid, outdated or poorly written. You may therefore decide to delete, rewrite or redirect them, as is most appropriate. Checking the analytics in this way will guide you to determine the articles that you need to discard or change.
It is the desire of any business that relies on digital marketing is to get high organic SEO rankings. The good news is that this is achievable, if the right strategy is employed. One such strategy is” Historical Optimization’’. It requires that you optimize your outdated blogs to deliver a fresh, more acceptable look – it is not mandatory that you write brand-new content. The argument for improving on the old content to give it a fresh look is very valid. The web, as it is now, is choking with new content. Statistics released by WordPress indicate that about 80 million new articles were released on WordPress alone in the last 30 days. If the content on all the publishers were to be considered, the figure would simply be overwhelming. This mind-boggling increase in the number of new posts arose from the fact that businesses have been competing at churning out as many posts as they could in the last few years, in the hope of gaining a favorable ranking with Google. The result has been an overload of poor-quality content on the web, as emphasis was laid on quantity, and not quality. The irony of the matter is that most of the new content thus churned out did not capture the attention of its target audience – all that information is simply too much for people to consume. Only few of the posts make it to the first page of Google.
The key to success is this: post fewer, better, high quality papers and posts by improving on existing posts. This way, the blog will respond to the needs of your target audience, and will be more fruitful. Once the analytics check has exposed the posts that could be bogging you down in Google rankings, there are 8 things that you can do to correct this:
- Optimize the pages that rank between number 7 and number 15 on Google.
This is especially true for content that is doing rather well, but has failed to reach the first page. Updating the content featured on pages 7 to 15 can help improve your content and thereby improve your Google rankings.
- Use fresh images and screen shots
A good guide on how to go about updating your screen shots and images can be obtained from the comments and questions from the old post that you intend to update. Pay close attention to the information that you get from the comments section, and respond by using images and screenshots that are more relevant to the needs of the visitors of your revised blogged.
- Ensure that your blog post is properly structured
Be keen to ensure that all the details on your post are well structured and up to standard. One of the biggest cause of hiccups that a post can experience hinges on quality. Poor quality work should be avoided at all costs. Check and re-check the images, descriptions, headers, language use & grammar, and ensure that the structure is top-notch.
- Study your competitors
Studying what your competition is doing right can give you an idea on what you need to change in your strategy. Content that appears on the first page of Google is a great place to start for this. Carefully study their content structure, use of images, wording, and any other aspect that might give you a clue as to why they are doing so well. Borrow what idea needs to be borrowed and modify it for use in your own content.
- Change the date of the post
Once everything is set and the old blog post has been appropriately updated, remember to change the date to reflect the publish date.
- Promote the new post
The revised post can effectively be promoted through social media platforms. Ensure to reach out to your fans and followers, and ask them to share and give you their feedback. Use strategies that will make your fans be inclined to repost and retweet the fresh content to multiple recipients.
- Make use of opinion shapers
Every industry has notable people who act as opinion shapers. They have great influence and their word and recommendation carries match weight. Employ the tools necessary to identify and reach out to them, and let them in on your revised content.
- Act on Comments and Questions
Remember too, to contact any person who had left a comment on the blog. Make their experience more personalized by contacting them via email to let them know that the post is now up to date. Additionally, make it a point to periodically review your content and make appropriate changes based on the dynamics of the environment under which your business operates.
Your content should perform well if you observe the above key tips. With these in mind, it will not be long before your content gets impressive ranking – and this is good for business!