Your website layout is gorgeous, your AMP and canonical pages match, and you placed plenty of authoritative evergreen content on your pages. You obviously worked hard to create a solid web presence for your product, company, or service. It’s time to focus on routinely updating your website content. Here are five key ways to keep your website content fresh.
Keep Up With the Competition
Fresh, trustworthy, and relevant content rules on Google. The algorithms that assess website content assign a rank to every page based on the quality and usefulness of the content provided. If you’re a hat maker, and you routinely post new content about hat styles, hat materials, and other hat-related information, Google considers your website more helpful to users than a hat-making website with stale, unchanging content.
Websites that cover media, fashion, entertainment, politics, technology, and other rapidly evolving topics must continually refresh their content to keep up with the competition. Internet users want to be “in the know” about their business, media, and shopping interests, so they avoid websites that never update key content. Give the curious, insatiable user more reasons to check out your site by feeding their need for new trends and ideas.
You have a bit more leeway if your website deals with an industrial topic like construction, manufacturing, or heavy equipment. It’s difficult to add fresh content about plumbing techniques or core sampling when the methods and materials rarely change.
As long as your evergreen content is reliable and authoritative, and you have long-form content (meaning articles or white papers greater than 2,000 words in length) posted on your website, your industrial topic site is still relevant and useful in Google’s eyes. However, update your website’s blog postings at least once a week to keep users informed about trending industry-related laws, techniques, and projects.
Optimize Keywords in Your Content
Keyword optimization is a science. Awkward, poorly placed keywords are distracting. Generic keywords are as unhelpful to your page rankings as non-existent keywords. Scan all of your website content to ensure your keywords and keyword placements are sensible and searchable.
A great way to upgrade your website’s keyword content is to use long-tail keywords. If you’re a dentist in Philadelphia, using the keywords “dentist”, “tooth cleaning”, and “titanium implants” won’t bring you any more local traffic than a dentist’s site in San Diego. Even adding “Philadelphia” before the above keywords won’t bring you more traffic than other Philadelphia dentists using the same keyword phrases.
Get specific with long-tail keywords like “Philadelphia dentist offering weekend hours” or “Eastern Pennsylvania board-certified dentistry practice.” Include the names of local neighborhoods in your keyword strings to draw in page views from potential local clients.
Keywords become stale in the same way your main text content becomes stale. Refresh keywords on a routine basis to stay on top of contemporary search terms and trends. Use your favorite keyword search tools to select website keywords that are up-to-date and searchable.
Ensure Your Links Always Work
Users become frustrated when your links don’t work. Your content is also deemed less trustworthy when you provide a link to prove a point, but the user only receives a 404 message when they click on the provided link.
Routinely check the links on your website’s pages for relevance and freshness. Some publications and government websites routinely remove web pages or content offered on their sites. An article that’s highly relevant to your content may be switched with a table of contents or a landing page that has no immediate benefit to your site’s users.
Check your website’s internal links as well. If you provide links to other articles or content on your own website, make certain that the links lead the user to the information they want to know or the page they want to reach. Your users develop trust in your page components and you get more page views when your links are always functional and relevant.
Maintain Your Freshness Score
Website freshness is ranked by several factors. The first factor is the inception date of your website, which generally degrades as your website ages. The second factor in freshness rankings is the amount of change noted on a website by search engine crawlers.
Small changes to evergreen text won’t give your website a higher freshness score according to most search engine ranking protocols. If your evergreen content is trustworthy, authoritative, and high in usefulness, the pages hold their own over time, since more viewers will visit and link to your pages when they need expert content. Google may even fail to recognize small changes to evergreen website content.
Other pitfalls when updating your valuable evergreen content are page-ranking manipulations. If you significantly change your older content, your newer content can be outranked in search engine results by the older material. Linking your newest material to the older content is one way to keep pages fresh, but there are other methods you can use to improve your website’s freshness score.
Increase the evergreen and overall freshness score of your website with the following actions:
Focus on large changes to main body text
Add new web pages at a higher rate
Increase user engagement on your site
Minimize changes to anchor text
Start a company blog and update routinely
Re-purpose older content for contemporary users
Remove outdated content or replace with fresh text
All of the above actions lead to increased freshness scores for your website. Remember that maintaining the freshness of your site is an ongoing process, not a once-a-year chore.
Naturally Increase Your Website Link Rate
Your website ranks higher in search engine algorithms when you have a high link rate to your site’s pages. Of course, if your site is suddenly getting hits from too many outside links, Google may think you’re up to some nefarious back-linking or other non-approved link-related games. But, increasing the link rate to your website naturally is a great way to see more page views and higher search engine rankings.
Increase your website’s link rate by building authentic interest and curiosity about your site. One of the best ways to increase link rates to your site is through blog posts. Host your personal blog on another website and link back to your commercial website. Or, write guest blog posts for other industry-related websites and blogs. When your guest blog is posted, most onsite publications, websites, and blogs allow you to provide links back to your own website.
Compose and publish online press releases about your company to keep the public informed about your business or industry. Include research from peer-reviewed studies to add authority to your press releases and give users a reason to click on links to your website.
Many local publications and media are looking for new stories and/or approachable authorities. Allow local, national, or industry-related reporters and writers to interview or quote you for news stories about your industry niche or your company. In turn, you get exposure for your links on the various media websites to which you’re a contributor.
Don’t wait for the media to come to you. If you believe you have an interesting story to tell, or you have the education to be considered an authority on a certain subject, contact media outlets and offer your interesting tale or ongoing expertise. You build your link rate organically when you put yourself out there in the media and provide links to your authoritative content.
Follow the advice listed above to increase your website’s search engine rankings. Your website and your users benefit when you continually refresh your online presence.