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3 Important Questions To Ask About Posts in Your Blog Archives

Image via Flickr user theunquietlibrarian.

Image via Flickr user theunquietlibrarian.

Here’s a quick exercise that I encourage you to do every now and then.

Identify a post in your archives (preferably something that is a year or more older) and then ask yourself these three questions:

Can I update it?

Many times the posts in your archives can do with a refresh. While you might not want to do this with every post – if you have an older post that gets traffic from search engines it can be well worth doing!

It might be that you can add newer or up to date information, fix broken links, add some further reading to other articles you’ve since written, correct errors etc.

Can I Promote it Again?

Many of the posts in your archives could probably be promoted in some fresh way. The key is to find ‘evergreen’ content that hasn’t dated (or to update older posts with fresh information).

Late last year I wrote a post about how every day I try to find at least one post in my archives at Digital Photography School that I share on social media.

Can I Do a Followup Post?

The posts in your archives can be a great source of inspiration for future posts on your blog.

There are many ways to extend a post without simply rewriting the content you’ve already published. These might include:

    • Writing a post that explores an opposing view
    • Create a discussion post that asks readers for their thoughts, opinions and experiences on the topic
    • Write a post that gives an example, case study or tells a story on the topic
    • Repurpose this content in some way. For example as a slide share, infographic, podcast, webinar, report?

In each case above you not only are creating an extra post but you also can link back to the previous post to give readers a more holistic perspective on the topic. By doing so you also potentially are taking your readers on a bit of a journey through your archives and creating some momentum with your content over time.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Diana says:

    You just gaved me some ideas about managing my post archives.
    Thank you Darren and keep posting articles like this. Even if we don’t write you every time (I supouse that is borring to see 100 of thank you in comments) these articles are a real help for us ;)

  2. Sonia says:

    Great advice. I share at least one or two old posts on social media every day and it is fabulous for my stats! I use the time to update any photos and add in any new affiliate links that I may have too.

    I was wondering though – what do you think of updating a post and then republishing it? I am not very good at techy stuff – so is this detrimental?

  3. Stacy says:

    Holy crap. I forgot about my old blog posts.
    You just gave me a great idea!

  4. Angela says:

    I’m just starting to promote my page, but appreciate these ideas for later. :)

  5. Archives are a great source of inspiration for me (and I don’t even have that much in the archive yet!).

    When I’m running a little dry on creativity I like to turn my mind back to what was done before – see what I can make of it now, either through a new post or revisiting an old one.

  6. Shailesh says:

    Hi Darren, Very informative post over here on Older Post. You have solved my older post issues. I definitely use your tips on my blog to promote it again. It’s really worthy to it and help us for getting some good idea on Older content. Thank you very much fro share this good idea with all your readers.

  7. Mircea says:

    Interesting ideas should be tasted. Every story deserves at least another point of view.
    Thank you Darren !

  8. Really nice blog post Darren Bro! :) Archives really are a great source of inspiration and you just gave some great ideas for managing my blog post archives thank you very much.

  9. Tell me more to get traffic from search engines.

  10. Mahipal says:

    Hey,

    I think Archives are way too outdated.

    No one has done innovation or shown creativity in this field. We juz have old Month on month archives.

  11. Erin says:

    The follow up post idea actually just popped into my head today. I realized that I had mentioned a certain locale several times in various posts on my travel blog. Seems like a very organic progression once you have a healthy virtual stack of posts under your belt. Funny to see this here. I guess I should listen to the blog gods and get on with it! ;P I also have seen bloggers compile pictorial collections from archived posts. I thought it was a nice way to visually stimulate readers and recycle a post. What do you guys think about pictorial posts?

  12. Darren, thanks for the good advice. I am going to set a monthly goal for updating blog posts Besides more current information, I believe that I write better now than a year ago. Take care.

  13. Tony says:

    Great post, this is something I have been talking about doing for a while now but just haven’t. I will definitely remember these tips when I finally do go through my archives. Thanks for the advice!

  14. Evergreen Darren. Gotta be evergreen if we want to keep it around. Smart questions dude!

  15. I really admire your you content and thanks for this. From today i will manage my blog posts in a better way.. Thanks for advice..

  16. Stephan says:

    Very nice article Darren
    Archives are a great source of inspiration. I think those tips really can help me to improve my thinking and writing for my blog.
    thanks for your sharing.

    stephan

  17. Glad to visit your blog. Thanks for this great post that you share to us…:)

  18. Carolyn says:

    This is something I really work on. Most of my posts are pretty evergreen, as I have a how-to site. I keep a spreadsheet list of posts. Every day, I promote at least one of the old ones — usually two — on Facebook and Pinterest, and before doing so, I read the post, update it if necessary, add a Pinterest-worthy photo and a new featured image of the size Facebook prefers. I record the dates that I re-promote them and then just keep working with the “oldest” ones. Some are seasonal, so they get delayed until appropriate, and others have been superseded, so they get dropped off the list.

    Yeah, it’s time consuming but it keeps the old info fresh.

  19. I appreciate little “tune up” tips more than major overhaul suggestions, for the simple reason that I usually have 15 minutes to spare more often than four or five hours for improvements. Just did a viewing of my most popular posts and realized that several were still in the old format from before I redesigned the blog layout.

    Thanks, Darren!

  20. James says:

    Does updating an old post that is currently ranking for a term cause it to lose it position?

    • Bora says:

      If you keep the URL, Title and Description the same it should even boost the rankings. Assuming you haven’t changed the theme of the content to much.

  21. Linda Connelly says:

    Thanks for this article, I recently moved from Blogger to Word Press and have been reposting my older, updated posts. It has been helpful in introducing myself and steadily gained new followers.

  22. metz says:

    Updating and follow up post.

    A compulsory action like fixing broken links, addition updated information. You can do these things to your blog, it adds value, and we hate broken links and old information. It’s logical.

    Updating infrequently is new to most people, which mean you may do it wrong. When you take this approach, you’ve got to make sure your blog is geared towards converting visitors into readers.

    I found this post shared on Kingged.com, the Internet marketing social site, and I “kingged” it and left this comment.

  23. Jayashree says:

    Great points on how to generate more traffic using our archived content. We can also use plugins like Tweet Old Post in wordpress to post tweets on our archived content

  24. Malik says:

    I am new in blogging, my blog ranked only one month 0 to 747000, please tell me how to get more traffic from search engines.

  25. Alex says:

    This is one tip i would implement on my blog. Thanks Darren

  26. Hi Darren,
    I think follow up post is a great idea to keep our archived posts alive. Sometimes we need to update some posts to fit with recent ideas.

  27. David says:

    Nice post. I’ve been stuck with some creativity lately, and this is a perfect way to keep my site up to date while not having to think tooooo much! Thanks.

  28. Debarpan says:

    This is neat post from you Darren,Glad to launch onto this post of your.Thanks for sharing such a wondeful post with us.

  29. Debarpan says:

    This is neat post from you Darren,Glad to launch onto this post of your.Thanks for sharing such a wonderful post with us.

  30. Neha Chauhan says:

    hello darren every time when i read your article i get motivated due to it’s awesome info. Thanks for sharing this post with us