After listening to a blogger explain why he deleted a double digit percentage of his blog posts, I came across numerous blog posts by other big blogs that had done the same.
When I first heard about it on a Pat Flynn podcast, I thought to myself “This is counter intuitive. It does not make sense!”
The more he went on to explain why he had done it though, the more sense it made to me. In fact, I had a few aha moments and was determined to do the same on a few of my blogs. Especially this one.
Why Delete Old Posts?
One of the reasons I only do one post per week on this blog is because I want to make great posts. Sure I could pay someone $5 and have them write a post for me, but it would be just that: a $5 post.
No one would care to read it. Even if they did read it, the odds of them finding it useful and maybe even sharing it on their social outlets are pretty much none existent. In other words, it just doesn’t make any logical sense for me to put cheap content on this site.
Which is why – when I started this “one post per week” challenge in October of last year – I decided I was much better off doing one quality post instead of two half decent ones or five garbage ones.
I like the ability to link back to old posts and feel good about my friends reading them. I want people to get interested in me as a blogger no matter what post of mine they read.
I didn’t always have that philosophy. So some of my earliest posts on EmpireMarketing.ca (which is now this blog), were totally irrelevant. Or they were short 200 word announcements etc. Nothing someone could have read today and fallen in love with me over.
So what did I do? I deleted them and then permanently (301) redirected the URLs of the original posts to something that is more relevant today. This will not only improve the user experience, but will hopefully help me funnel more linkjuice at relevant posts that deserve it.
UPDATE: It’s been 5 days since I deleted the old posts and redirected the URLs to newer more relevant posts. Looking at my rank checker, my overall rankings just dropped drastically. This is apparently quite common when you do this. In one case a whole blog apparently got deindexed as a result. In all cases they came back stronger than before though… so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.
Updating Old Posts.
I haven’t actually done this (yet) but the next step for me is to work through older posts and update them.
The whole idea is to keep them relevant. All I will do though is go through the post, make sure it is still up to par (tweak if not) and then update the publish date.
When you do a search in Google, you will see a lot of search results have a date attached to them. I haven’t tested this yet, but it is said that Google will give newer stuff more exposure than old stuff just because people prefer “more recent” information.
As such, it is commonly recommended that bloggers update their old content at least once every two years or so. Which is exactly what I plan on doing – starting next week.
I actually shot a short video for you that explained this whole thing in better detail. Turns out I had some sand dust inside my iphone camera though which resulted in the HD video being super blurry.
Will be contacting Apple soon to get that fixed, but point is: No video this week.
I will however keep you posted on the development of the above experiment. Deleting so many posts seems like the opposite of what one should do, but am optimistic the positive outcome will make up for it.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of this case study.