April 5th, 2010

SEO Tips For Refreshing Your Site Content

by Mike Duncan

“If you are planning to refresh some of your site content, make sure to consider the SEO impacts. Many organizations make the mistake of updating their site content for a new product launch or some other business goal, only to realize that they also lost all of their existing SEO equity in the process. If you’ve already got some good shelf space, don’t do anything to screw it up!

It’s hard enough to get a top ranking position. Don’t overlook SEO in these important content planning stages. I’ve received panicked phone calls from Marketing Execs that just completed a site refresh and now don’t see their site’s rank. How awkward would it be to explain that to all of your stakeholders? Here’s 3 tips to avoid this and to make sure you’re taking all of this into consideration when refreshing your site content.

Run a rank report for all URLs that will be updated

I can’t overstate how important this is. This is the foundation that will drive a lot of your content decisions. You’ll want to see where you are currently ranking for your keyword landscape and which URLs are driving search traffic. This will help you establish your top priority URLs that need to be carefully assessed with any content changes. Remember, you may have a top ranking position due to the way your content is currently structured.

Changing the content on those top priority URLs may impact your ranking position and you could see a drop in rank and, thus, traffic. Once you’ve established these top priority URLs, make sure the people in your organization can clearly understand what the current SEO equity is, which will help with the content planning and overall strategy.

For example, your marketing department may want to overhaul the home page, removing the existing content and replacing it with a video introduction by your CEO. Now, if you do it the right way, you can structure your video content in a way where it’s SEO friendly. But – why would you go this route if your home page has a top 5 ranking for 10 different keywords and is already driving a lot of traffic? A better idea would be to assess what content is helping keep those top ranking positions and leave it alone. You can always create other calls to action on the home page, such as “see our CEO introduce our new product” – which would link over to a new page.”

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