If written well, your content should be interesting long after it has peaked and receded back into your library. However, certain pieces can continue to perform well for years. Here are a few of my tricks for optimizing and re-promoting old posts to give them new life.
1. Pay attention to your daily (real-time) traffic: If you have a post that is trending larger than normal during the day you might be able to add some momentum to boost it every higher. But if you’re not looking at the real-time stats from time to time you will miss it. I use a cool service called Gaug.es to monitor all of my sites from one place.
2. Social Signals for Older Content: When an old post suddenly gets a new batch of readers, take that opportunity to re-read it, clean up any old data, and re-socialize it on your channels. You should spend a bit of time each day looking for older content to repost. The best way to do this is to look at what’s trending, what’s showing up in your real-time stats. And you can go about this in many simple ways. For example:
a. The top content plugin for WordPress shows you what’s trending on your site, now.
b. Gaug.es overview shows you real-time data from your site. Historical data is a click a way.
c. And even the Jetpack Stats page has some good numbers from today.
Then you look for older posts that have shown up in today’s stats. Since it’s early in the morning, the stats are still pretty light. But I can see a couple posts that I haven’t seen in a while.
- Facebook Giftcard Scams
- REVIEW: Google Domains
Are two posts that are older. The Giftcard post has gone viral several times. And when I update the content, with new scams it always takes off.
3. When You Have a Hit Promote It: I have two posts that trend on my side daily.
- Writing a Plan for Your Future
- Get Back Your Blue iTunes Logo
I’ve had others, but nothing quite so strong as the Career Path post. (In fact, this one is so good I write a new version every May when students are getting ready to graduate. This post alone has generated 3,427 unique reads in 2015. 3,393 of the visitors landed on this page directly (usually indicating an external referral or search result.
And since this post was originally written in 2010 I can only hint at the numbers: they are huge. And I’m not a career consultant. But I am like every other person, interested in planning out my career and making choices today that will enhance my opportunities tomorrow.
4. Understand Your New Visitor Ratio and Market Accordingly: Looking at my traffic overview chart I can see that 90% of my traffic are FIRST TIME VISITORS. How are you entertaining the interests of your first time visitor? Can you create landing-page like experiences on your most popular posts? If every new visitor is a potential customer, you can see that 90% of your traffic is more interesting than 10%. (And many of those repeat visitors, in my case, are digital media marketers like myself, so not really potential clients.
That’s it, the simple process for optimizing your blog/content traffic.
1. Real-time trends and promotions to support them
2. Evergreen content: older posts that show up again
3. Use the hits to find new visitors, promoting what works
4. Focus on NEW visitors and getting them engaged