As more users spent longer hours searching online, Google rolled out its latest core algorithm update amidst the novel COVID-19 crisis. Aligning with the ever-increasing emphasis on fresh, high-quality content to meet E-A-T (expertise, authoritativeness, or trustworthiness) standards, Google released a statement explaining the update ensures that content delivered in search results is both authoritative and relevant to the searcher’s inquiry.

What does that mean for firms and businesses competing for the top spots on Google’s search engine results page (SERP)? You’ll have to look through the content on your website to find out. Ask yourself, is this content outdated or no longer relevant? If your site is full of antiquated blog posts, announcements, events, or promotions that provide little value in today’s context, you’ll likely have difficulty getting it to rank organically. Let’s explore how content pruning can give your site the SEO boost needed to lure curious readers who might turn into customers.

What is Content Pruning?

Content pruning involves removing any blogs, pages, or content that’s low-performing or purposeless. Many of us are guilty of writing a blog, promoting it when it’s published, and then forgetting about it while moving on to the next. With Google’s latest algorithm in mind, having all of the excess content that provides little to no value will hurt your site’s authority more than help it.

For example, if you have a blog post explaining the benefits of a (now extinct) personal Google Plus profile, that wouldn’t provide much value to readers in 2020. Content that’s irrelevant in today’s climate doesn’t enhance your site’s expertise, authoritativeness, or trustworthiness (E-A-T), and will hurt your SERP rankings in the end. 

Should I Remove All Dated Content from My Website?

Just because a piece of content is old does not mean it’s trash. Plenty of older content can be evergreen and still offer value. If a piece of content isn’t relevant in today’s climate, consider whether it can be repurposed or modified. For example, consider a roundup of your best blogs on a specific topic. Or can you tweak an older blog for today’s standards and repost, so it retains value.

Content pruning is about updating the content on your website, so it’s timely, relevant, and valuable for today’s audience. With that in mind, removing outdated content can lead to higher rankings in search results that more people and potential clients or customers will find.

How Often Should I Prune Content On My Site?

Content pruning is something you should do periodically. Don’t make the mistake of leaving old content to add to your blog library. How often you prune depends on how much content you have on your site.

If it’s your first time sorting through and removing outdated content, you’ll likely need to spend more time on this process. After your first sweep, try to prune on a semi-annual basis. If you have more than one-thousand pages, for instance, consider content pruning every quarter or so. Be sure to keep an eye on your site’s analytics as you prune to see what content results in the most clicks, impressions, and where pruning sessions best suit your workflow.  

How Else Does Removing Outdated Content Help My Site?

Removing or repurposing outdated content on your site will undoubtedly gain approval on Google’s search engine, but there are many other benefits to consider as well, including:

Enhanced overall site quality

Taking time to prune through and remove outdated or irrelevant content improves the general quality of your site. You can rest assured knowing a potential client won’t stumble on any embarrassing or inaccurate content that can damage your site’s expertise.

An improved user experience

When users visit your site, they’ll only read content that you’re proud of and reflects your firm or business in the best light. Even if you have fewer pieces of content after pruning, what remains will provide a valuable, relevant, and timely resource that users will appreciate and remember next time they seek a solution.

Intentional external links

Internal and external links should both link to quality sites that are helpful to the user. After taking the time to prune through your site’s content, you can be confident that the external links on your site are purposeful and connect to authoritative sites that enhance your site’s expertise. 

Augmented crawl budget

With less content for Google Spiders to crawl and analyze, Google can index more of your site’s content. With more indexed content, your site performs better in Google and other platform’s search engine results.

Need Help Optimizing Your Business’ Website?

At Market My Market, our goal is solely focused on giving your site’s SEO the boost that it needs to rise in the SERPs, gain more customers, and help your business thrive. If you have questions on how to enhance your business’ SEO efforts, contact our marketing experts for a free consultation to learn how we can help.