How To Get More Traffic To Your Website By Updating Old Blog Posts

When we first began blogging in 2014, it was simple. Write a short, valuable 300 word post, hit publish, and watch the comments roll in. The average blogger didn’t worry about SEO or making their post Pinterest worthy to get more traffic to their website. Sigh, those were the good ol’ days. Whether you like it or not, blogging has become more competitive and therefore you must be strategic in the content you post.

For the last few months, we’ve spent the majority of our time updating old blog posts, eliminating irrelevant posts, and revamping the blog as a whole. Today, we want to show you how to update your old blog posts and easily get more traffic to your website.

How To Get More Traffic To Your Website By Updating Old Blog Posts

When you’ve been blogging as long as we have, the thought of sifting through your old blog posts and fixing each one, sounds like a nightmare. Especially when you have hundreds of posts like we do. But, if you want to get more traffic to your website, it is an absolute necessity.

Blogging is most effective, when you create content that stays relevant Click To Tweet

If you write each post knowing that someone may read it 10 years from now, you will add more value for your reader. This is called evergreen content.

So, to make it as least overwhelming as possible, we started with our five most popular posts based on our Google Analytics data.

To find your most popular posts, log in to Google Analytics, click on behavior > overview. Then, change the date in the upper right hand corner to the first day you started blogging (just estimate if you don’t remember) to get the most accurate results.

How To Get More Traffic To Your Website By Updating Old Blog Posts

Now that you’ve got a few posts to work with, let’s get started…

Install The Yoast SEO Plugin

If you haven’t already installed the Yoast SEO plugin to your blog, then do it now. This plugin is AMAZING!  It analyzes the SEO for your entire blog post to make sure it is completely optimized for search engines. The best part, it’s 100% free unless you want to upgrade to their premium option.

Title

We use Coschedule to analyze our blog post titles before transferring them to the plugin. Using Coschedule’s free headline analyzer  you can write titles that are more SEO and emotionally driven. Catchy titles will attract more traffic to your website and generate more shares on social media.

The headline analyzer will give you a score from 1-100 based on length, word balance and SEO value.

How To Get More Traffic To Your Website By Updating Old Blog Posts

We usually aim to get a score of 70 or higher. However, depending on our keyword, you may end up with a slightly lower score because of the length. For example, this blog posts’ keyword phrase is “get more traffic to your website” so we incorporated it into our title the best we could without sacrificing proper grammar.

Permalink

The Yoast SEO plugin lets you easily change your permalink. However, since the blog posts you are updating have been ranking well on Google, we highly suggest you don’t change the url. If other websites have linked to the original post, you’ll break those links. You’ll lose your authority and ranking potential those sites were passing to you.

If you absolutely have to because you want to include your keyword (and previously didn’t do so) then create a redirect for the url. Otherwise, people will be sent to a 404 error page when trying to click through the old link!

Meta Data

Write 1-2 sentences that include your keyword for the meta data using the Yoast SEO plugin. Although this does not affect your ranking on Google, it will affect your click through rate. The more enticing it is, the more likely someone will read your blog post. If the meta data is left blank, Google will pull random text from your blog post that might not necessarily help you rank higher.

Make The Post Longer

You’ve probably learned a lot since you last published the post. Utilize that knowledge by adding new information to your posts. Lengthen them and add up to date info.

Blog posts that are 1,500 words or more tend to receive more shares. Click To Tweet

Not only will they become useful, but also more valuable to your readers the longer the blog post gets.

Format Your Blog Post Content

When we first started blogging, our paragraphs were super long blocks of text. The truth is, most people don’t want to read an in-depth 3,000 word article, but still need to consume the information. The best way to deal with short attention spans is to format the text to better suit scanning.

Here are a few more tricks that we’ve used on our blog :

  • Lists – bulleted and numbered
  • Subheads (H2 and H3 tags)
  • Bold text in paragraphs
  • Short paragraphs (2-3 sentences)
  • Visuals

Formatting your blog post will keep people interested longer, which in turn means it will get shared more frequently.

Check For Spelling and Grammatical Errors

This is super important! Before you do anything else, make sure to re-read your blog post to find any spelling or grammatical errors. There is nothing worse than trying to read a blog post that sounds like a five year old wrote it. It helps to read it out loud, or have a fresh pair of eyes from a friend look at it.

Design Pinterest Friendly Images

If you’ve been blogging for a while, it’s likely that your design style has changed since you first started. We personally used to use horizontal images, that today, would not work for Pinterest. Pinterest is currently our number one referrer of traffic to our website. Like Google, it is a powerful search engine of images that you can benefit from.

Pinterest friendly images will help you get more traffic to your website. Click To Tweet

Create vertical images that include the title of your blog post, and are consistent with your current color schemes and fonts. Then, pin the new image on Pinterest.

Alt Tag

Copy and paste your blog post title (with keywords) to the Alt Tag of your main Pinterest graphic. Since Google can not “see” images, it can read the text provided on the image.

Description

Write a 3-5 sentence summary of your blog post that includes you keywords (similar to your meta data) in the description of the image. This will auto populate when someone pins your graphic to Pinterest. In turn, it will help make your graphic more searchable.

Link To Relevant Blog Posts

It’s highly likely you have many posts to share that have been archived on your blog. For example, maybe you wrote that post about organic makeup in 2012 and since then, you’ve written about organic makeup five more times. Link to those newer blog posts! Try to weave them in naturally, or add a recommended reading tip.

Interlinking your blog posts will keep people on your website longer. Click To Tweet

Linking to relevant blog posts makes it easier for readers to navigate your site and find more content. The more user friendly your site is, the easier it will be to get more traffic to your website.

Insert New Affiliate Links

In the past, many bloggers started blogs as a type of digital diary. Today, many people realize the potential of blogging, and seek to monetize it from the beginning. If you’re like us, you didn’t realize there was this incredible monetization strategy called affiliate marketing when you first started.

Now, with one simple plugin, you can monetize your website and make passive income. Update your old blog posts with new affiliate links for the brands or companies you may have talked about.

If nothing else, this one change can generate more traffic for your website by building your authority and credibility. People want to know what you recommend they use, because you are the expert.

Use Click To Tweet Plugin

We love the Click to Tweet plugin! Although you may not use Twitter, millions of other people do. In fact, according to Statistic, Twitter has 317 million monthly active users. Yes, you read that right. It would be foolish not to take advantage of such a powerful social media platform.

Once you install the plugin to your blog, you can create prewritten tweets for people to use. Just like this one :

Click to tweet makes it super easy to embed tweets into blog posts. Click To Tweet

The Click to Tweet plugin will grow your blog post reach tremendously, and get more traffic to your website. We like to include at least 1 click to tweet per blog post. The longer the blog post is, the more we include.

Create A Call To Action

Creating a call to action is a small, but necessary way to update your old blog posts. A call to action (CTA) is a line of text that prompts your reader to take action.

More likely than not, people won’t leave a comment on your blog post unless you ask them to. After reading your blog post, they need to know what to do next.

It can be as simple as What do you think about X?


Keeping track of all of this can be overwhelming, that’s why we’ve created a free checklist for you to download. Print it out and laminate it to use it again and again with dry erase markers!

17 Comments
  • JoJo Tabares

    February 15, 2017 at 1:54 pm Reply

    I’m bookmarking this for later. I’m such a non techie, this made my eyes crossed. LOTS of great info, but I need time to work it. Thanks for sharing it!

  • Blackellis

    February 15, 2017 at 2:25 pm Reply

    Extremely good and detailed post!

  • Sabrina Quairoli

    February 15, 2017 at 2:41 pm Reply

    Great stuff! I find that getting to about 1500 words is quite difficult with all the other tasks I have to do for my clients. I have worked my way up to 900. I think I would need to cut back on the number of days I post to do that quantity of words per post. Right now, I blog 2 – 3 days on my home organizing blog and 1 day on my admin support blog.

  • Angela

    February 15, 2017 at 3:18 pm Reply

    Great tips! You have given me a lot to think about and ideas on how to update my old posts. Thanks so much for the ideas!

  • Sarah Jean Althouse

    February 15, 2017 at 4:02 pm Reply

    I’ve been updating my old content and I can tell it’s working as far as boosting traffic! I had to delete several posts that just didn’t fit and while that was pain, it makes it all more cohesive.

  • Kim Copithorne

    February 15, 2017 at 4:20 pm Reply

    Thank you for this great informative post. I have been slowly going back and updated older blog posts. I appreciate all these great insights!

  • Alyssa Gordon

    February 15, 2017 at 4:32 pm Reply

    Love all this info = it’s great! I’ve got to go back over some of my blog posts!

  • Tabitha Nelson

    February 15, 2017 at 4:41 pm Reply

    I really enjoyed reading this! I’ve had my blog for about a year and I’m still learning everything about everything but I’m enjoying reading posts from people like you. One step at a time 😀

  • Jessica

    February 15, 2017 at 5:15 pm Reply

    This was so informative. I have been working on updating my old post and lately I have been all into my analytics. I am most certainly pinning so I have something to reference off of AND I will be checking out what other goodies you have on your blog. Thank you.

  • Courtney CJ

    February 15, 2017 at 6:40 pm Reply

    I definitely agree that adding Pinterest graphics has helped to boost my old posts. Between them and Twitter, I am able to constantly some of my favorite old material and new readers are able to enjoy.

  • Sam @ The Haunted Housewife

    February 15, 2017 at 6:50 pm Reply

    This was so in-depth and helpful! I recently audited my own blog and I’ve been slowly sprucing up old posts using a checklist similar to what you have listed. It makes a HUGE difference in traffic! All bloggers need to do this every now and then.

  • Barb

    February 15, 2017 at 7:43 pm Reply

    These are such great tips! Bookmarking this page to keep referring back to. While the thought of updating old blog posts seem daunting to me, you’re right, it’s the only way.

    Thanks for sharing your expertise!

    http://www.flashesofdelight.com

  • Jessica Sheppard

    February 16, 2017 at 3:46 am Reply

    Great post! Love your recommendations…always looking for ways to improve my traffic. It’s wonderful to be able to maximize all the investment of hard work while keeping things relevant and up to date. So helpful!

  • Kimberly @ Berly's Kitchen

    February 16, 2017 at 11:05 am Reply

    I really need to update some of our old posts. Thanks for sharing this info! I’ve bookmarked it. 🙂 I’ve been wondering about the Click to Tweet plugin.

  • Bridget @ Antics of a Nutty Hiker

    February 16, 2017 at 12:59 pm Reply

    Love this! I am actually in the process of updating all of my older blog posts with pinnable images or just images in general!

  • Brittany Daoud

    February 16, 2017 at 6:57 pm Reply

    Bookmarking this so I can keep referencing! Thanks for sharing, I feel like I really need to step up my SEO game!

  • anne | onedeterminedlife

    February 16, 2017 at 8:17 pm Reply

    I feel like blogging is more seo and promotion then writing. There is so much to remember.

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