You’ve invested time, sweat – possibly tears and probably money – into ensuring you keep adding content to your website on a regular basis. That’s awesome, and remains a cornerstone of good small business marketing. 

But what’s happening to your old, outdated content? And how can you get it to start working for you again, and keep it working for you? Don’t let all that effort go to waste. Here’s how to repurpose your old content to bring in new traffic – and customers!

The benefits of repurposing content 

Updating and ‘recycling’ your old content comes with a number of advantages:

  • It’s quick. Compared with brainstorming and writing new content, simply updating, fact-checking, and expanding on your old content is a more efficient use of your time. 
  • It’s good for your SEO. Search engines want to deliver fresh, relevant, and up-to-date content to their users. That’s why newer pages often (but not always) outrank content which is several years old.
  • You can combine related bits of content into comprehensive ‘pillar content’. Longer, more detailed content also tends to rank better. More on that to follow!    

How small businesses can repurpose their content 

Before we dive into some of the ways you can reuse older content, its worth talking about something called keyword cannibalization. (Relax, it’s not as scary as it sounds!)

Basically, if you have lots of small posts on a topic, which all focus around similar keywords, how does Google know which page is the best to send your potential customers to when someone in your area does a search using those keywords? 

As an example, let’s say you run a small dry-cleaning business. As part of your marketing efforts, you’ve created several blog posts over the past months. For instance:

  • What fabrics can be dry-cleaned?
  • Which materials should never be dry-cleaned? 
  • How does dry-cleaning work?

Etc., etc.

What happens if someone does a search for ‘which materials can and can’t be dry-cleaned?’ Which page should Google send them to? Hmmn.  

Compiling lots of related content into one fresh, comprehensive, and in-depth article is also a good way to avoid the ‘quantity over quality’ trap which many small businesses in Australia fall into. Check out our post, ‘How much content does your website really need?’ for more deets!   

What you should be aiming for is one big page (your pillar), which links out to your older blog posts which cover one aspect of the topic in broader detail. You’re aiming to get the pillar page ranking high, with all your other posts supporting that pillar and ‘backing it up’ in the eyes of search engines. 

Finding inspiration  

Taking a look at your older content is also a lot easier than constantly trying to come up with new angles you haven’t covered before. Chances are, new industry advances, regulations, technologies and innovations have come out since – or you might just have a deeper understanding you can share. And you already have the basics laid out in your existing content.  

Remember also that not all your content might be on your actual website. If you have a reasonably active social media following, user generated content can also be a great source of inspiration.

By going through all the old questions you’ve answered on your social media, or comments your fans have made, you can compile a pretty comprehensive FAQ based off feedback from real customers, updating and fleshing out your answers as you go.

Ready to get started? 

Putting together a list or spreadsheet of all your existing content, identifying common themes, and highlighting posts which need updating first is a simple way to create a content repurposing to-do list for yourself.  

If you’d like help with the process, remember that Hunter & Scribe’s content marketing experts are at your disposal. Contact us at [email protected]