Upgrade Content for Better SEO and Conversions

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Disney’s 1994 animated feature “The Lion King” might seem like a “Hamlet” retelling, but its creators said they didn’t start out by trying to emulate Shakespeare. It wasn’t until they pitched an outline that someone realized the themes lined up. Consequently, the filmmakers worked in more connections to the classic tragedy, resulting in a film that might be called an ode to “Hamlet.” By reaching into the same well repeatedly to create blockbusters, Disney reminds us that we don’t have to start from scratch every time we create content.

Over the past decade, Disney consistently has remade its own classics, including the 2019 “photorealistic” computer-animated remake of “The Lion King.” The studio took its beloved story and made something moderately new (and incredibly successful). To that point,
one of your most valuable flooring marketing tools today is the content upgrade, which is making old content new again for search engine optimization (SEO) and website conversion boosts.

What is a Content Upgrade?

Content upgrades (or content updates) are defined as making changes to your existing content to make it more relevant or current. These include:

Adding new content: You might find that blog posts of 1,200 words are performing best for your hardwood flooring business right now. If you have a bunch of old posts that are about 600 words, you don’t have to scrap them and start over. Simply add more (good) content to those posts to boost word counts.

Deleting obsolete content: In an older post, perhaps you referenced high-end flooring choices in a new luxury home for a celebrity. While that illustration might have worked with readers when you first published the post, these types of references can grow stale over time. Update posts by deleting information or anecdotes that aren’t relevant anymore.

Updating information: Often, the most beneficial achievement of content upgrades is updating information to ensure the content remains accurate and helpful and aligns with current SEO best practices.

Does Updating Content Hurt or Help SEO?

Done correctly, updating content can help your SEO performance. Google and other search engines want to serve the most relevant and helpful links to searchers. Updated content typically is more helpful than older content, making it more likely to rank higher.

When you upgrade old content, do so with an eye on keywords that currently are performing well. By adding new keywords, especially in subheadings, and including content that specifically addresses those keywords, you increase the SEO performance of a page. Updating old content can give you more SEO bang for your buck than creating an entirely new post with updated information. It can take days or even weeks for Google to index a new page on your site, and there is no guarantee that every page will be indexed.

Old pages on your site likely are already indexed. By upgrading a page already showing up in search engine results, you provide value and potentially convert visitors to clientele while you wait for the search engines to crawl your new content (and, hopefully, boost your page rank).

Quick Tips for Upgrading Content

Here’s a checklist of things you can change in a blog post or other content to upgrade it quickly:

  • ‘People Also Ask’ questions: Look at the type of information that pops up in Google’s “People Also Ask” box for a search. When possible, work some of those questions into your content and answer them concisely.
  • Phrasing or anecdotes that date your content: Remove content that didn’t stand the test of time. For example, a reference to a popular movie or celebrity should be removed if your current average reader wouldn’t recognize it.
  • Keywords: Always start with keyword research, even when you’re updating content that’s already created. Incorporate new primary and secondary keywords to match the intent of today’s searchers.
  • Internal and external links: Ensure all links work. Update internal links to match your current linking strategy. Change any external links that point to outdated pages or information.
  • Statistics and facts: Try to replace any old statistics or facts with newer, more relevant information. Whenever possible, avoid sharing statistics more than two years old, as this can make you look out of touch.

Content Upgrades vs. Repurposing Content

Creating content upgrades isn’t quite the same as repurposing content, although both are valuable strategies you can use. When you repurpose content, you use it for something else entirely. For example, you might gather 10 of your best-performing blog posts and combine them to create an ebook. You can offer the ebook as a free download to entice people to sign up for your email marketing list.

Welton Hong is the founder/CEO of RRM@home, which helps flooring companies generate more revenue and increase market share. He also is the author of “Your Digital Floor Plan: Digital Marketing Strategies for Flooring Businesses.” Learn more at rrmathome.com or by emailing info@ringringmarketing.com.

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