Bloggers are often advised to post at the same time of day. They are advised to look at what times their posts are read, or when their engagement is highest on social media. They should post at these times, because this is when their audience is online and interested in what they have to say. But, then what? We don’t just write posts to be read in the first few hours and days after they have been published. The best bloggers have posts that are years old, and still getting read.
This is especially true if the content published is evergreen.
What is evergreen content?
Evergreen content is content that still holds true, long after its original publication date. The easiest way to think about it: content that has no expiration date.
How To Use Old Blog Posts To Attract A New Audience
Your old posts shouldn’t just be sitting in an archive. They should be getting found by search engines. Those posts should be pulling in new readers and attracting a new audience. They should still be working, and offering informative or entertaining content. Or why did you bother writing them? So, instead of just letting your old posts languish, let’s find some ways to make them work for you, today.
Update Your SEO
Great SEO can mean that the majority of your page views each month are for older posts. These posts can get consistent traffic, and keep growing over time, long after you’ve written them. But, the problem is that SEO evolves and changes over time. You might have stuffed them with keywords years ago when you wrote them, but SEO has changed and you’ve learned more about it.
Keep Sharing Them
If you’re like most blogger, you have a routine for new posts. You might share them in the same places as soon as they are published. You might even have tools to do this for you. But, do you ever share them again? Share old posts consistently all of the time and you’ll get more views.
Action item: develop a rotation for old blog posts. You could focus on sharing a specific category at a time for easy tracking. Add these old posts to your social media scheduler.
Add Updated Information
You might look at old posts and cringe, and you might not want other people to see them. Don’t worry, this happens with many bloggers, myself included. The information might not be true anymore, or your own beliefs might have changed. So, update those posts. Regularly check and update old posts to make sure you are still happy with them and they are still correct.
Action item: Look at your posts and make a checklist of those that need fresher, updated info. Create a schedule to get these done over the upcoming months. Even if you update 2 posts each month, that’s a start!
Transform and Repurpose Them
Look at your most popular older posts. The ones that get views all of the time. Make sure they are updated and correct, but also find ways to get more out of them. Could you add an email opt-in offering extra information (aka content upgrade)? Could you create a vlog, or a podcast on the same topic? Would it be worth creating a series? Or interviewing other bloggers on the topic? Find ways to add extra value, and use your popular old posts wherever you can.
Action item: Make a list of 10 of your most popular posts from the past 2 years. Choose one way you can transform each of these posts to offer added value for your audience.
Link to Your Old Posts
When we write posts, we link to our other posts. We know that internal linking is great for SEO, and helps us to offer a better user experience. But, do you ever go back and add links? Or do your posts only ever link to posts that were written before them? Regularly go back to old posts and add links to relevant newer ones.
Action item: Choose 10 of your most popular posts, and add at least one recent, internal link to each post.
Refresh Old Graphics
Another way to attract a new audience with old blog posts is to update the graphics for the post. For example, if you were one of the early bloggers, you might not have included an image in each post. Or, you might not have set a featured image for each post. We didn’t do all of this back when we were simply writing for the fun of it! Now you can go back to old blog posts and do some visual touch-ups. Create a fresh set of graphics for old blog posts, and set a featured image for each. And, of course, create a few pins for said posts. When you refresh the graphics and share the posts across social media, the post won’t look archived, rather it will look like a fresh post.
Rinse and Repeat
Here’s the thing. You took plenty of time (and maybe money??) to create and maintain your blog. Why not continue to maximize the investment in your content? The action items listed under each tip will help you to break down the task into do-able parts. Updating old blog posts is an ongoing process. The goal is to continuously drive traffic to old posts so that you can attract a new audience to your blog. After all, what’s old to you is brand new to your next new site visitor.
Do you dust off old blog posts? How do you use your old posts to drive new traffic?