Guest post by Helen Stark
A blog is an excellent source of traffic and leads for ecommerce websites. In the pursuit of more shares, likes, and engagement rates, website owners create lots of new articles and wait for sales to go up.
There is no doubt that new articles are extremely important, as Google loves fresh content. But, if you take a closer look at your website traffic, you may notice that most of the traffic you get comes from content you created some time ago.
Posts that have existed on your blog for some time can be a real sales booster, when handled appropriately.
Below, you’ll learn a few useful tricks about how to take care of your old articles in order to boost your traffic and conversions.
Identify Articles To Update
You don’t have to spend hours updating every single article on your blog. Not all posts deserve to be updated. Check out your Google Analytics dashboard to identify which articles are worth updating.
The articles to update will be the content on your blog that’s already performing well and has been bringing you stable traffic for some time. Head to the Google Search Console and check out the Search Traffic tab. Under the Search Analytics section, you’ll see a report with all the pages you have on your website.
Narrow your choice down by choosing only blog pages, and check out the following characteristics:
- If an article is still sending you traffic a long time after its initial publication, it’s worth updating
- If an article is closely connected to the amount of traffic your blog gets, it’s worth updating.
- If an article is already ranked on Google in positions 1-30, it’s worth updating.
You don’t have to update all of the articles that meet these criteria at once, however. Just make a list of the most promising posts and start updating them one by one.
Update Your Keywords
Are you sure you targeted the best keywords when you first published those articles? It may appear that your article currently ranks for keywords you haven’t been targeting. In which case, it’s high time to revise those keywords and either add or focus on some new ones.
Сheck out the keywords the selected articles already rank for in Google in your Search Console. Then, drop the most promising post into a keyword research tool (such as Ahrefs, which is what’s being used in the screenshot below) and check for more options.
For example, you may select the tab ‘Also rank for’ to see the keywords that various pages rank for along with your targeted keyword.
You may also check the target keywords in Google and scroll down to the search suggestions Google offers. The main idea of your keyword research is understanding the “searcher’s intent.” Thus, if you run a shoe store, for example, and you have a post about different types of running shoes, target keywords that answer users’ questions about “how to choose the best running shoes.”
Improve The Articles’ Meta-Data
Title and description are the first things a user sees when searching for content. You have to make your articles’ meta-data tempting for users to click. Try coming up with a couple of new titles for your articles. If you run a WordPress-based blog, you can use this Optimizely plugin to check out the performance of different title variations and then choose the best one.
But please note…
Don’t touch the URL of the article. Google has already been sending traffic to this URL for some time. Changing the URL now will drop your traffic. If you still wish to change the URL, make sure to set up a 301 redirect to the new one.
Revise The Content
You may notice that many of the older articles bringing you stable traffic are evergreen articles. Evergreen articles usually cover the most general and popular topics that users look for. But even these articles need to be revised from time to time.
So, revise the articles’ content and rewrite sections that need improvement or new data or information. Add new data or case studies that prove your points. Include few fresh screenshots or infographics. And don’t forget to include internal links to other posts on your blog to boost their traffic as well.
Share The Updated Articles On Social Media
It’s time to attract some fresh views to the updated articles. Write a good introduction and share the posts on your social media accounts. Note that you’ve updated and revised the posts, and point out what new data or ideas users will find there.
Promote the updated articles to your subscribers and customers. Add them to your email and describe the benefits of the articles for your customers.
Build Backlinks To Them
Backlinks are one of the primary ranking factors, according to industry studies. They correlate best with Google rankings. So your focus should be on building more backlinks to the updated articles.
Outreach is one of the best tactics for getting new links. Email bloggers and websites relevant to your niche and send them a unique pitch about the updated articles. Here’s a useful video about how to find great backlinks prospects and how to get backlinks fast:
The Bottom Line
New posts are essential for your blog because they signal to Google that your blog is up and running. But existing posts can send similar signals if you update them properly.
Establish a routine for updating your existing posts and watch as the traffic to your website grows.