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7 Effective Content Spring Cleaning Strategies

Update Sept 2018

SEO. Keywords. Google. Content. Key Word Density. Link Farming. Black Hat. White Hat. Penalties. Those of us who've been in the SEO and Digital Content Marketing game a while have seen a lot of myths, best practices & black hat techniques come and go. As an SEO content writer you've watched great out of the box ideas skyrocket rankings and then become punished accounts. So as we move into 2019, it's time to do some spring cleaning to make sure your content creations are still working for you within your content marketing strategy.

So make a late night of it, drink some expresso and set aside some time to spring clean your content for the new year.

Re-read your content

If you've been developing content a while as an SEO blog writer, this may be the equivalent to reading a few books. But in order to make the most of your content, you need to do this periodically. I recommend, at very least, 1X a year. If you have way too much content. Selectively re-read and prioritize. This serves several functions, which we'll discuss in detail in the upcoming steps.

Develop an Action Plan

Have a notepad on hand. Make note of article titles and what needs to be updated, fixed or removed. Be specific but develop a system so that you can easily go back through later to fix what you need to fix. If it's a really easy fix, fix it as you go, but don't get side tracked and get lost in the weeds. Some things just aren't worth fixing. Other things will improve your SEO and Customer Experience by making the content shiny and new with very little effort. These are the focus of your efforts.

Set Priorities. What is most important to fix first: old stats, obsolete information, content that poorly represents your current brand, poorly written content, content that used obsolete SEO strategies that may now be hurting you, etc, etc. etc?

Look for and update Obsolete information

For example:

If you quoted a stat that is more than 1-2 years old, quickly recheck the source to see if they've updated the stat or find a more updated source.

If you said something or predicted something that didn't come to pass or is bad advice, you may want to revise it. Yes, "Orwell Style".

If you made reference to a current event that no one remembers anymore, come up with a new analogy.

Be sensitive to dated sounding or "bad" information

In an effort to adapt to quickly changing trends, we often say things that turn out to not be such a great idea, got proven wrong or just lost public support. If you were recommending these kinds of things, it may be time to either delete, archive or update the info so you can repurpose it. You are not trying to pretend you didn't say it, but you don't want a current followers of your "teachings" to take some old strategy that you promoted years ago as gospel today if it is just plain wrong or no longer works. It worked at the time. But it may be time to clean up.

Check Links

Make sure the links still work. If they don't remove them or link to something new. There are tools to help with this.

Reevaluate the SEO

Would you do something differently today? Could you make small changes to improve the SEO of the piece based upon current best practices? Then it may be time to update the piece. It may need a shower.

Identify Content that Was De-indexed By Google

In the new Google search console, click sitemaps >

Click the graph icon on the far right >

Click excluded

See which pages aren't indexing. Determine why. Attempt to fix the issue if the content is worth indexing.

In some cases, it will be obvious why it didn't index. It's super short. Or it's an infographic with no text. Decide where these are worth salvaging.

Take Inventory And RePurpose

Wow. Look at all of this content. You may find that a piece is more relevant today than it was back then. It may be time to repromote it to your loyal followers to get more interactions. Maybe an old content piece is relevant now and worth repurposing for your newsletter, blog or upcoming book.

Once you develop content, it's yours to do as you please, so make sure you're getting the most out of it.

Refurbish Your Content

Content Creation is an investment of time and money. By refurbishing your content you can assure that it keeps working for you. Evergreen content is a commonly touted goal. But if content is current and relevant, what seems evergreen at the time may not be down the road. By re-evaluting your content, you can keep your content fresh and working for you.

Tips Provided By Already Content. We've been helping businesses promote themselves through custom SEO content, blogs, ebooks, white papers, emails, etc. for nearly 10 years and would love to help you make your content work for you. We can evaluate existing content and design a personalized strategy to get results with content.


What would you add to the list?

Do you think it's important to clean up content on occasion?


Leigh Clayborne is a Hubspot certified freelance content marketing / SEO content writer & strategist with 10 years of healthcare management experience on 15+ years of creating content. She is a strong proponent of creating the right customer experience to meet business goals.

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