One of the great ways that I have found to improve any of my blogs is to find an old post and spruce it up, rewrite an old blog post and republish.
Over the years I have become a better writer and I have also learned a lot about SEO and writing for the reader. In the past I used some gimmicks to try and rank higher and since all of these tricks have gone away I have needed to write a lot better than I used to.
So lets look at how we can get an old post, rebuild it a bit and then make it fresh, new, and better able to rank.
I truly believe that in order to get more links and higher rankings in Google and other search engines you need to make sure that your posts will engage your readers.
Keeping people on page for longer by making pages more interesting and easier to navigate and read is your main goal in editing or re-editing a post. So let’s take a look now at what and how I look at in an old post and the steps that I take to make that post more engaging, shareable, and most of all, important to our readers.
7 Tips to Rewrite an Old Post
Start With A Great Title – Everyone agrees that people will click on a title that is interesting to them. This is the most important step in getting your articles read. Clickbait proves this out.
Whether that title is seen in Google, Reddit, Twitter, or even a Facebook feed, often our future readers have no hint except the title to draw them over to our content.
Make sure your title is long enough to draw our reader in. This length can be used to ask a question, entice a response, or pick a fight, but mostly it will trigger an emotion if written right.
Other things that help to make a great title are asking a question or being controversial. Remember as well that in WordPress a change in the title does not change the URL. If you previously have history with that URL you will want to keep it the same – remember we are just editing a title here not a page name.
Write Like People Teach – Back when I was teaching computer classes I learned a very important axiom that at the time seemed crazy but makes a lot of sense, especially when trying to teach people. Here is the formula:
- Tell them what you are going to teach
- Teach them
- Tell them what you taught them
Sound like it is very repetitive doesn’t it? Fact is though that there are good reasons that we want to do this. If you are trying to teach people you need to set up your subject, Once people understand the what and the why then you can launch in and explain, teach, make people understand. Once you have gone through this teaching then you can reiterate the importance of this info and cover off anything that people may not have understood.
Expand Each Thought – Often we will write a post and hot publish and then later on find that there were a lot of things that we may have been able to expand on. Go through each of your major points and think about what you may have not done well and just expand so that the reader has a much better idea of the points you are trying to get across.
Add Videos – I love to hop onto the YouTube and get a video that covers my subject well. I may think that I am becoming a great writer but the fact is that some people are going to learn better from also seeing another point of view on video.
I am not so proud as to think that I know it all, others have a great viewpoint as well.
What I look for when I add videos are videos that are focussed on my subject, are around 3-10 minutes long, and are pretty good quality at least. The last thing I want to throw up is a video that will make my brand look bad by selling some random product or being low quality.
Add Pictures – I love to add relevant pictures to my posts. This does a few things.
First a great picture can grab a reader and allow them to become more focussed on the subject.
Next adding pictures breaks up text which helps the reader to stay on site instead of being scared by huge blocks of text.
And thirdly, a picture can explain in a much better way some part of your story that words alone have trouble bringing across.
I have two kind of pictures that I will try to add. I have right aligned pictures that are around 350 to 400 pixels wide. This will allow a decent about of text to fill in to the left of the image. Also I will sometimes use a picture that is 600 pixels wide that will be center aligned so that it will break between paragraphs.
I use colorful images and make sure that I will not get in any copyright problems by searching Google images for usage rights – I select “Labeled for Reuse”
Shorten Text Radically – Quite often I will shorten my text by only having a couple of sentences in each paragraph of text. If your text is more punchy with shorter paragraph structure it will definitely keep people interested for longer
Use More H2 Titles – One of the problems with long articles or posts is a lack of structure. By breaking up the text by sections using titled sections in your posts it is easier for your readers to scan through and find the information they are looking for. this will hopefully lead them to staying and reading more
this is my first crack at this rewrite an old blog post subject. I am hoping you learned something but keep coming back, I will edit it more in the future.