One of the most hackneyed sayings in the English language is ‘You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.‘ It was crafted in the early Bronze Age to keep elders in their place, and it has tarnished our perceptions of what aged things are capable of ever since. Well, the US science experiment show Mythbusters has proved that you can indeed teach old dogs new tricks, and Google’s search results continue to show that old SEO can still rank.
The two hosts of Mythbusters, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, have been testing cultural and Hollywood myths since 2003. In 2007, the intrepid pair decided to put the old saying to the test, taking on a pair of older canines from an animal shelter and each trying to teach their dog a series of tricks. Needless to say, the saying was thoroughly disproved.
The ranking test of old pages can be disproved with far less effort. Simply type a few keywords into Google. For an astonishing number of keywords, Google promotes surprisingly aged websites. For example, a search on ‘online marketing tips’ produces a first result from 2009 and a second from 2006. Unlike a search for Cheshire cheese, one would assume that fresh pages are constantly competing for these spots.
There is something in this which could make all our SEO jobs easier. First, good search engine optimisation can keep your pages ranking highly. Second, these old dogs of your keyword list are an opportunity for fresh content. See if you can teach them some new tricks.