After publishing a post most people make the mistake of simply letting it go to be forgotten in your large archive which usually no one reads.
These posts are great resources to refer to when you publish new posts and because of this you should maximize the value of them. Beneath you will find my thoughts on how you can improve your old posts.
Why Update Old Blog Posts?
Here are some reasons to why you would like to update your posts.
1. New Facts – Even though something may seem black and white while writing a post, new events may occur and new facts will be revealed. Because of this you may sometimes want to update your posts with new information.
2. Change of Opinion– This is similar to new facts, but a bit more personal. Before writing a post you may have a strong opinion on something but thanks to a helpful comment you change your mind. After doing so you may want to enlighten your visitors about it.
3. Usefulness – Internet is a big graveyard. There are hundred of sites closing down each day and because of this some of your links will eventually be broken. With broken links your posts quickly loses value.
4. Add Value With New Posts – Depending on how many posts you publish each month you will eventually build an archive with interesting content. By updating your old posts you can lead the visitors to your new posts as well while getting more pageviews at the same time.
Things to Update in Old Posts
These are not rules as much as suggestions on what I usually update.
1. Quick Fixes – Skim through your old content and look for broken links, spelling errors or grammatical mistakes. With more experience we will find more mistakes in our own writing.
2. Add New Information – A new fact may be revealed or you can feel the urge to update simply because you have learned more within the specific area. Personally I think it is better to update an old post than publish a completely new one with the exact same concept and a few minor changes.
3. Link to New Posts – While updating your old posts, think about what you have done since this specific post. Are there any new content within your site you can link to? By doing so you will not only increase the pageviews but also increase a page link power.
4. Reposting it – If you play your cards right your blog will grow at a tremendous speed resulting in a lot of new readers never getting to see your quality posts the first time. After updating a post your can change the publish date for tomorrow and all of your readers will get the chance to read your high quality content once more.
5. Promote – This is actually more on how you can use your old posts. If you run out of content to publish you can simply gather links to some of your old posts and present it in a new way. For example, 13 methods to get backlinks from forums.
How Often Should You Update?
This is a highly individual question and it depends mostly on what type of posts you write and how many. Personally I always try to spend one hour each Sunday updating my olds posts before revisiting comments.
Share Your Thoughts
Now I would like to hear your opinion on updating old posts. Do you spend time doing it or do you think it is a waste of time? If you update your old posts, how often and what changes do you do?