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Bringing New Life to Old Content

3 min read

Bjork Ostrom, founder of Food Blogger Pro, and MarketMuse Co-founder and Chief Product Officer Jeff Coyle discuss how to bring new life to old content. Your content inventory is a precious asset that needs constant intention in order to maximize its value.

Google Has Been Assessing Content Quality for Years

We’ve shifted away from just publishing new content. We’re no longer solely focused on “feeding the beast” with new material to satisfy search engines and social media. Updating older content plays a significant role in our content strategy.

Old vs. New

Sometimes, especially when you’re strapped for resources, updating an old page is easier than creating new content. In this environment consider updating new content to reflect the current situation in which our readers find themselves. Look to optimize existing content with potential, it’s either low on the first page or high on the second page of the search results page.

Some Reasons to Update

The most frequent reasons to update revolve around intent changes, competition, outdated information, content gaps, new expertise, user behavior, and variant targeting. As you create new content around a specific topic make sure to integrate existing content into that cluster. Spend less time thinking about the competition and more time thinking about how to make your content better.

Identifying and Prioritizing Content to Update

There’s more to the process than just finding topics for which your pages are within striking distance. Focusing on your expertise, the areas around which you’ve amassed a large amount of content, makes it easier to achieve significant results from content optimization.

A Few Tweaks Can Turn Existing Content Into Gold

Start from a place of strength and determine who it is you are seeking to satisfy. Look for questions that your content doesn’t answer and either update it or write new content. Reader feedback, in addition to MarketMuse Content Briefs, can help find these gaps.

The Impact of Updates

Not every update is going to be a home run but you can still achieve significant success. Updating older content has been most successful for PinchofYum when it’s moved to the front of the blog for that additional exposure.

How to Determine Successful Content Performance

Traffic isn’t the only consideration. For PinchofYum an important criterion is whether people are having success with the recipe. Ratings are helpful in this respect, ideally from those who have actually tried the recipe.

Content Optimization Journey: Next Steps

Getting traffic to your site isn’t enough. You need to consider what that visitor engagement looks like. Internal linking is a powerful way to guide that engagement as visitors click on links to peruse your site.

Q & A

Stephen leads the content strategy blog for MarketMuse, an AI-powered Content Intelligence and Strategy Platform. You can connect with him on social or his personal blog.