The subject of what to do with aged content comes up often in our SEO Department and for good reason. There are many conflicting theories and best practices even from Google itself. If you’ve been wondering how to best utilize content articles that have been on your website for a while, keep reading!
We all know the consistent addition of relevant, helpful content created to help the user reach your websites is a must these days. As a ranking signal, regularly published, original content, especially in article form, satisfies Google’s desire to see site owners as active participants in their web presence. In addition to faring well with the search engines, fresh and engaging content is also a fantastic way to increase time on site and influence return visits as you become more of an authority on your products and offerings.
The old adage that SEO is a marathon and not a sprint may seem to dictate that it’s best to leave the content on your site and let it mature. But what if all that content, which over time, has enhanced your site’s value in the eyes of search engines, as well as users, is now outdated? How do you maintain a positive experience for users on your site without losing those indexed pages that while no longer relevant, had a part in building a site up to what it is today?
Dealer eProcess has developed a best practice policy that we believe addresses many of these unanswered questions and conflicting opinions. For branded content that can be updated with more recent information, we advise editing the content but not changing the URL string or Meta Title.
For content articles that reference a specific model year, we recommend removing them from your main menu but still keeping in your human and XML sitemaps. This will allow the content to continue to rank and assist your visibility for the long-tailed searches they were initially designed for, even though they may now be geared toward your pre-owned inventory. This is actually a good thing, as ranking well for used inventory is usually quite difficult as the portal sites have a ranking foothold due to their immense virtual inventories.
Lastly, we believe keeping the most current and high-traffic branded content in an easy to navigate menu that is separated out in user-friendly submenus. This will make your content readily accessible for your users and for search bots to find, crawl, and index. After all, what good is content if no one can find or read it?