What should you do with old, poor-quality content?

Posted on July 2, 2021


In a Google SEO Office Hours event, Google’s John Mueller answered a question on what you should do with website content that’s old and of a poor quality.

In his response, Muller split the question into two, firstly focusing on whether content is labelled as poor quality simply due to it being old, and secondly what to actually do with content that is determined to be poor quality.

Old content

The questioner explained to Mueller that when he began search engine optimisation (SEO) on his website, it was, in his words, “bad”, and the articles he wrote were poor quality. He wanted to know whether, now that he has articles that are of a higher quality on his site, he should remove the poor quality content, or if that would affect his website.

Mueller responded by explaining that just because a piece of content is old, that doesn’t necessarily make it “bad”. He told the questioner that if he looked at the content and was happy to have his name next to it, it should be kept, but if the website owner considered it embarrassing, he had two options: remove it, or improve it.

Improving content

When it comes to improving content, there are some pieces where this is not possible, like those concerning out-of-date topics.

However, you can improve other types of content. If you’ve got a piece with valid points, but your writing style is poor, this can easily be rewritten and instantly improved. Another example is multiple pages containing generic content, with only the structure and place name changed in each one. You could rework these, adding in unique points to each piece to make them truly different from one another.

Another idea is to simply redirect any content that’s old and not so great to content on the same topic that’s newer and of a higher quality. This requires minimal effort on your part and quickly solves the problem.

Here at Engage Web, we understand the power of high-quality, fresh content that will drive visitors to your website. If you’d like to have a chat about our content services, give us a call today.

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