How Deleting Old Content Can Help Your SEO Rankings

Did you know that old content could actually be hurting your site\’s rankings? We may think those posts we wrote back in 2005 have little influence on how well we are performing today, but they have more power than you think. Deleting that old content can help your SEO rankings.

When you delete old content and replace it with fresher, more robust posts, your site gains more attention from both visitors and search engines alike. In fact, updating the old with the new can be one of the best things you do for your website this year.

To begin boosting your rankings, follow these four steps:

Step 1. Complete a Content Audit

The first step to take in revamping older content is to first take inventory of what you have. You need a fairly accurate list of all your pages and posts you have added throughout the years. Try referencing your site map or, if you work with an IT support team, they can often run your results for you.

Step 2. Determine What Pages to Delete

Next you need to determine which posts to keep and which should go. Just because a page has lots of Pinterest hits or traffic doesn\’t necessarily mean it should stay. You need to look at the content within in the post itself. Is it relevant today? Does it support your current message? Are there broken links, unavailable products, or closed contest entry forms? Are there old sponsorship posts still lying around? Don\’t worry about losing traffic! You will soon be sending your visitors that would have found this old page to a much better and more relevant place.

Step 3. Decide Where to Redirect Your Audience

Once you have pinpointed the posts you want to delete, you next need to decide what you want to replace it with. Where do you want to send people instead? It is often best to replace old content with new content that is still based on the same topic. The new post should be one that represents what your business is all about and really “wows” the visitor.

Step 4. Create the 301 Redirects

Once you have paired your old content with the new content you will replace it with, you need to set up the 301 redirects. This tells Google and other search engines to send your visitors to the new page instead of the old one. A good plugin can help simplify this process. Just make sure you don\’t use a 410. This will simple delete the post with no redirect.

Deleting old, dated content can be scary at first. In fact, you may see your rankings fall for a short period of time. But once Google and other search engines begin crawling your updated site, you will soon see those rankings shoot back-up.

While deleting old content can certainly help your site perform better, few things are more important than having great, relevant content. If you are struggling with creating those powerful posts, it\’s time to partner with a professional for help. Grand Marketing Solutions is a firm dedicated to offering creative, well-written content to help support all of your website objectives. Contact us for more information or to schedule a consultation about our website management services.

by Katie Zurawski

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