Blog content is a major component of many SEO efforts. However, while the strategic development of blog content is demonstrably valuable for many SEO goals, savvy marketers may understandably wonder what the typical lifetime value of a blog post is, in addition to how to maximize and extend that value.
Unfortunately, there is no single definitive answer to these questions. There are many variables to consider, including individual SEO goals, the online spaces that you are operating in, and ongoing changes to search engine algorithms.
A common claim is that the value of a blog post drastically diminishes after 30 days, but any attempt to offer such a specific, universal timeframe regarding such a complex and situationally dependent matter is inherently flawed. While we can’t offer a satisfyingly (but unreasonably) simple answer to this question, we can offer some general guidelines and best practices for assessing and improving the lifetime value of a blog post.
What Type of Content Offers the Most Long-Term Value?
Perhaps the most common mistake people make when trying to determine the lifetime value of a blog post is to assess a blog post in a vacuum rather than more realistically considering how it fits into the framework of a website’s larger blog content strategy. One factor that indicates how much long-term value a blog post has is how much it is supporting your overall SEO strategy.
For example, a page about the career prospects of a civil engineer can be valuable content for a college’s website in its own right. However, that content is far more valuable if it is part of a greater project to create a comprehensive catalog of career content relevant to degrees offered by that institution.
If we are trying to predict the long-term value of a piece of content on its own merits, the following elements are typically consistent with long-term value:
- The content does not unnecessarily date itself by using language that indicates when it was written.
- The content offers information that is unlikely to change in the near future.
- The content is not overly promotional.
- The content is not just company news.
- The content has depth and is providing the reader with information that is genuinely relevant and helpful to them.
- The content reflects searchers’ intent.
- The information within the post has not already been meaningfully explored in previous posts published by the website.
- The copy is professional, clean, and readable.
The Importance of a Regular Publishing Schedule
By implementing a regular publishing schedule, you can significantly improve the long-term value of your blog content. This is not because you need to stay ahead of the rapidly diminishing value of your previous posts, but rather, you need to continually bolster and refresh the value of your existing content.
A long-term content development strategy can significantly improve the return of your content by strengthening keyword signals and offering relevant content to your audience.
However, regular publishing content on your blog confers further value related to search engine algorithms. First and foremost, frequent publishing encourages search engines to more frequently crawl your content, which can result in more prompt indexing of pages and user-facing updates related to your SEO efforts. Additionally, by creating more assets for your blog, you are increasing your chances of drawing traffic or earning backlinks for your blog.
Considerations for Linkable Content
Again, when assessing the long-term value of your content, it is important to understand the goals of that content concerning your greater SEO strategy. Often, marketers think of keyword-focused content when it comes to blog posts, but that is not the only type of content that is functional as part of a mid-or-top-funnel blogging strategy. Linkable content is equally important to support different SEO goals, and therefore is necessarily different.
While some best practices are the same as keyword-focused content when it comes to developing linkable content (e.g. avoiding purely promotional content, providing clean copy, using evergreen language), some best practices are unique to linkable content.
Most notably, linkable content should appeal to a larger audience than your target audience, particularly those associated with external websites that you hope to build backlinks from. This may increase the chances of you earning these valuable backlinks, which may in turn strengthen authority signals for your own domain.
Considerations for the Revision of Blog Content
A significant way that you can improve the long-term value of your blog content is by regularly strategizing and implementing revisions. A few ways that you can revise your content to extend its long-term value include:
- Fixing any spelling or grammatical mistakes;
- Adjusting titles based on up-to-date keyword analysis;
- Ensuring that you are not cannibalizing your content by publishing redundant information across multiple web pages;
- Adjusting time-related language (such as dates) to better reflect the current day or to be more generally evergreen;
- Reviewing links to ensure the pages are still live and relevant;
- Looking for opportunities to include internal links to more recent content.
However, it is important to ensure that you do not over-revise your content, particularly in a scenario where the content is already ranking highly or otherwise continuing to strongly support its strategic purpose.
Considerations for Algorithm Updates
A factor that can impact the value of your blog posts is any algorithm updates to the search engine. This variable is out of the hands of brands producing content. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t take measures to safeguard the value of your content against algorithm updates.
First of all, you should monitor ongoing and anticipated algorithm updates. However, even more, important is to understand the underlying goals of the algorithm and its updates. Theoretically, the major goal of the algorithm is to serve searchers with the best possible answers to their questions.
The best way to protect the value of your blog content against changes in the algorithm is to simply ensure that your content is thoroughly and honestly addressing the questions and concerns of its intended audience.