Can Updating Old Content Lead to a Surge in New Backlinks?


    Can Updating Old Content Lead to a Surge in New Backlinks?

    In the ever-evolving world of SEO and content marketing, we sought insights from Directors of Content and Marketing Leaders on the impact of refreshing old content. From optimizing content for more backlinks to renewing traffic with evergreen content updates, discover how these eleven professionals successfully leveraged content revamps to gain new backlinks.

    • Optimize Content for More Backlinks
    • Update Content to Reflect Industry Trends
    • Create Solution-Focused Content
    • Update Industry Guide to Gain Quality Backlinks
    • Revitalize Content with Expert Insights
    • Refresh Articles for Post-Pandemic Relevance
    • Improve Freshness Score for SEO
    • Rejuvenate Tech Articles with Current Reviews
    • Overhaul for Current Social Media Strategies
    • Annual Updates Attract Industry-Specific Backlinks
    • Renew Traffic with Evergreen Content Updates

    Optimize Content for More Backlinks

    While doing SEO research on our existing content, I noticed one particular article that had several high-DR backlinks, most of which were a result of the header image being used on other blogs. But when I looked at the content, it wasn't very good. So, I went in and optimized the content, increasing its length and including semantically related keywords. Now, that article has a first-page position as well as a rich snippet. That header image is now consistently giving us backlinks from other blogs. In essence, we were able to amplify something that we noticed people were liking.

    Jason Vaught
    Jason VaughtDirector of Content, SmashBrand

    Update Content to Reflect Industry Trends

    Our team compiled a detailed shipping guide for our website a few years ago. We updated it with the most up-to-date industry news and shipping trends, and within three months, we had 40% more new backlinks. We kept up with the ever-changing e-commerce landscape and provided our audience with valuable and relevant information. This attracted the attention of authoritative websites.

    Not only did this strategic content update improve our SEO performance, but it also helped position Stallion Express as an industry leader in the shipping sector. The main lesson is that you must update your content regularly to keep up with current market trends, drive organic traffic with more backlinks, and build your brand's trust.

    Diana Zheng
    Diana ZhengHead of Marketing, Stallion Express

    Create Solution-Focused Content

    Every day, new websites are built, and it's tough for companies to attract enough visitors to their sites. As a tech leader, I recognized this issue and instructed our team to write a blog post on our site about how companies can tackle this problem.

    This occurred in 2022, and we had already written a similar article previously. This time, we made sure to discuss what's happening in the current landscape. Around mid-December, something positive occurred – we received a surge of new backlinks. For example, in the past year alone, we gained more than 50 new backlinks. Our team writes content that tech-savvy individuals appreciate, addressing real tech challenges. Consequently, news sites like the Juneau Empire added links to our site along with excerpts of our content.

    When it comes to acquiring new backlinks, companies should focus on creating content that is not only excellent but also provides solutions to specific issues, such as tech challenges.

    Jack Vivian
    Jack VivianChief Technology Officer, Increditools

    Update Industry Guide to Gain Quality Backlinks

    We specifically have an earlier blog post about "Best SEO Practices" on our website. Despite being thorough when it was first published in 2018, the rapidly evolving SEO landscape has made it outdated. We made the decision to update this content in 2023. We added fresh, pertinent resources and tools, updated the statistics, and took into account the most recent developments in SEO.

    Post-update, we reached out to websites that had previously linked to similar content. We informed them about our updated, more comprehensive guide. This approach was a game-changer. Within a month, we observed a notable increase in backlinks. Several high-authority sites in the SEO niche began linking to our article, citing it as a current and valuable resource.

    This surge wasn't just about the increased number of backlinks; it was about the quality. We attracted links from authoritative domains, which significantly boosted our site's credibility and search engine ranking. It was a clear example of how revisiting and updating old content can not only keep it relevant but also turn it into a magnet for new, high-quality backlinks.

    Shawn Manaher
    Shawn Manaherfounder, The Content Authority

    Revitalize Content with Expert Insights

    We had an article on our website that originally offered only nine tips on HARO link building. It was a simplistic piece with limited visuals and no expert insights. Recognizing the potential for improvement, our content team took the initiative to revamp this content. We expanded the list to include 25 comprehensive tips, integrating expert comments and adding high-quality screenshots for better understanding.

    The transformation was remarkable, not only in terms of content quality but also in the results it delivered. We noticed a significant increase in backlinks as our revamped content began to be referred to by other reputable websites, thus increasing our digital footprint and domain authority.

    Moreover, the revitalized article wasn't only a hit in terms of backlinks. It achieved another significant milestone: it ranked number one for "HARO tips" on Google. This top-ranking position helped us gain greater visibility, attracting more readers and ultimately leading to more shares and backlinks. Indeed, the effort we put into updating this old content paid off in ways we hadn't initially anticipated.

    Link to the article: 25 Tips To Write a Successful HARO Pitch [Templates + Examples] | October 2023

    Tristan Harris
    Tristan HarrisDemand Generation Senior Marketing Manager, Thrive Digital Marketing Agency

    Refresh Articles for Post-Pandemic Relevance

    We actually updated most of our old content from 2020 in the last quarter of 2023. From my experience, that was one of the best moves for boosting our SEO rankings because letting Google know our content is fresh leads to a big jump in traffic, making the effort totally worth it.

    Back in 2020, our articles mostly focused on the pandemic trend. So recently, we updated them to reflect post-pandemic and 'new normal' themes. We try to review our content at least once a year to keep it fresh for our readers.

    After updating, we saw a lot of new backlinks to our articles. Our site's Domain Rating (DR) went up by about 8 points, and our website traffic increased by over 5,000 visits! In terms of backlinks, we gained more than 50 from 36 unique domains linking to our six refreshed articles.

    Precious Abacan
    Precious AbacanMarketing Director, Softlist

    Improve Freshness Score for SEO

    As a technology editor and publisher, I once spearheaded an initiative to update our cornerstone content on our site, and the ranking results improved instantly. Our site’s daily traffic increased by 20%, and the overall monthly page views rose by 40%. In my experience, I discovered that updating the old content on the site leads to an improvement in the freshness score. That means our content was more attractive, enhancing search engine traffic and making our SEO strategies more effective.

    On most occasions, our content team always focuses on churning out new content daily. However, this did not translate into improved backlinks and traffic. Updating the old content requires less work and generates faster results. When the Google search engine detects that your content is new, you are likely to experience a spike in traffic. This makes your efforts to update old content worthwhile, leading to an increase in high-quality backlinks.

    Bobby Lawson
    Bobby LawsonTechnology editor/publisher, Earth Web

    Rejuvenate Tech Articles with Current Reviews

    An article on a tech blog titled 'Top 10 Gadgets of 2020' was warmly welcomed and initially attracted some backlinks and visitors. However, as time went on, the information became outdated and irrelevant.

    In 2022, the authors completely revised the article to rejuvenate it, adding in-depth reviews and comparisons, and replacing outdated technology with the latest models. They also included a video review and enhanced the graphics. They reached out to tech influencers, notified previous backlink sources, and posted the updated article on social media with its useful and current material.

    This demonstrated how content improvements can revitalize a post's appeal and backlink potential, as the article regained its position in search rankings, earned new backlinks from tech enthusiasts, bloggers, and industry websites, and saw a surge in organic traffic.

    Graham Mccormack
    Graham MccormackSEO Specialist, Graham SEO

    Overhaul for Current Social Media Strategies

    I've been in the digital marketing world since 2014, helping B2B companies bolster their client bases and grow their revenues. I have seen firsthand how revising old content can lead to a significant increase in backlinks and thus improve SEO performance.

    One real-life example I'd like to share happened with one of my clients. The company had an old, well-liked article on their website about social media strategies. However, it was written in 2016 and was no longer entirely relevant due to swift developments and changes in the social media landscape. We decided to overhaul the article, updating the information to reflect the current environment, incorporating insights on newer platforms such as TikTok, and optimizing the piece for relevant, high-volume keywords.

    Within a month, the updated article saw a surge in traffic, and it started ranking on the first page for several relevant keywords. What's more, we saw an influx of new backlinks. Other websites started linking to this updated guide, as it now offered valuable, up-to-date information. This showed us how effective old content revision can be for gaining fresh backlinks and boosting SEO performance.

    Refreshing old content that already resonates with your audience can lead to impressive gains. All it takes is some tweaks to make sure the material is currently relevant and optimized for today's search queries.

    Magee Clegg
    Magee CleggCEO, Cleartail Marketing

    Annual Updates Attract Industry-Specific Backlinks

    I recall a particularly striking example from our work with a cryptocurrency startup years ago. Back then, we regularly published high-value content covering concepts, themes, and topics on the burgeoning crypto industry—a strategy crucial for building investor confidence. Each piece was meticulously researched, offering rich insights.

    However, the rapid evolution of the crypto sector meant that the content aged quickly. To tackle this, we committed to updating our material annually. This wasn't just a matter of tweaking a few lines; it involved substantial research to ensure the content reflected the latest trends and developments in the industry.

    The payoff was substantial. Our revised content consistently generated a surge in new backlinks. Crypto bloggers, influencers, and even competing brands started referencing our work, particularly our pillar posts and e-books. These updates solidified the startup's credibility and maintained their position as a high-authority source in the crypto space. It's a testament to how dynamic content management can be a game-changer, especially in fast-evolving industries.

    Jeremy Rodgers
    Jeremy RodgersFounder, Contentifai

    Renew Traffic with Evergreen Content Updates

    When we first started creating content for the website, I had no idea about this stuff or about the concept of evergreen content, so we lost a lot of traffic because of dated content. Once I went back and updated content like 'Kitchen Trends for 2022' to 'Kitchen Trends for 2023,' I was blown away by the renewed wave of traffic we got. Yes, it required some work, but not as much as I'd anticipated. In this case, it was a trend piece, so it took some rewriting, but for other content, it's just a matter of changing the year or updating other small info.

    Rick Berres
    Rick BerresOwner, Honey-Doers