When Should You Update Old Content?

When Should You Update Old Content?

Content, like all things, stale with time.

Irrelevant information, outdated wording, and old content will drive your audience away. It defeats the purpose of why you are creating content in the first place. In the worst-case scenario, audiences will distrust your content in the future when they read outdated content from your website. This will result in your search result rankings dipping, affecting your content marketing strategy.

This is why hitting that publish button once is not the end of your content-making process. Updating your old content and consistently bringing relevant, fresh, and new information to the table will establish yourself as a reliable brand for your audience and eventually convert them into leads.

There is no definite rule on when you should start updating your content. It all boils down to your evaluation of your own needs and performance. Further, we help guide you in finding out the most optimal time and reason you should start updating your content.

When it becomes irrelevant

A famous phrase goes, “content is king”, which is only true as much as the content you are creating is relevant and helps your target audience. Digital marketing has been on the rise for the past couple of years. Audiences consume content at a much quicker pace than before. 

According to Business Insider, a study by GoodFirms, an internationally recognized B2B research, ratings, and review platform, showed that among their statistical pool, 66.99% of the respondents unfollowed brands on social media due to irrelevant content.

To prevent this from happening, revamp your content when it becomes irrelevant. A few signs and examples of content that becomes irrelevant with time includes:

  • Why iPhone XR is Apple’s Biggest Innovation Yet

  • The Best Marketing Techniques in 2018

  • Effects of Working From Home during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Articles about technology and a specific period become irrelevant quickly. For example, an article about iPhone XR being Apple’s best innovation will no longer be relevant and provide value to readers because, as of 2021, Apple has come out with so many new iPhone, iPad, and Mac models. Keeping and not updating that content will be misleading and provide false statements to your audience.

Meanwhile, articles targeted for a specific period are highly relevant only in the period they are written in. Readers would not want to click on a piece that indicates “2018” when it is already 2021 or “COVID-19 pandemic” in the future when the pandemic is already contained.  

When it doesn’t perform well

Writing and content creation, especially in digital marketing, considers engagement and statistics as very important factors. Search Engine Optimization or SEO is a method to improve your content and improve your search engine rankings. That way, your content shows up first when certain keywords are searched.

When readers see in the SERPs that there is an update in your content recently, you are more likely to increase your click-through rate than if your content was dated many years ago.

For example, when you search for the best iPhone models on Google, the following results come out:


Now you might notice that these two top search results are recently made or updated. This is because Google has this algorithm that pushes fresh topics to the top as, illustrated by this image from Moz.



When your articles are underperforming more than usual, it’s time to tweak them to tell Google that your content is of value. This will push your content higher into the SERP.

When your data is outdated

Perhaps the most common and obvious reason why it’s time to update your old content is when your content is considered old. With the tremendous amount of information that the internet receives and puts out every day, updating your content can seem like a tedious task. 

This is when your judgment matters. See if your content provides no more value due to the lapse of time. Should any critical data be changed due to a recent development? What are the signs that your content is outdated? It can be any of the following:

  • Less time spent on your article site based on metrics

  • Less to no traffic

  • Blog links are not working

  • Information isn’t relevant anymore

As discussed before, when your content is updated, SERPs tend to favor your content due to its freshness. This can be an effective strategy not only to maintain your credibility but also to once again bring back traffic to that particular content.

When there is a change in your business

Your content must change when your business does. Be it in terms of operations, management, expansion, or new product introductions, you must seize this opportunity to update your old content to reflect your current business operations.

Updating your blogs when a portion of your business changes will not only help your content be pushed up in terms of relevancy in the SERP rankings. It will provide your audience with relevant content about your new offerings, therefore eventually driving more sales.

Anytime you want to

You hold the power over your content. If you think a blog post you’ve done three years or three days ago needs to change, then do so. After all, our ultimate goal in updating our content is to be able to convey relevant data and content that is not only beneficial to us but for our audiences as well.


There is no hard and fast rule when you need to update your old content. However, you must always keep in mind why we need to know when to do it. Updating content is a continuous and repetitive process and is just as important as creating new ones.

Every outdated content, irrelevant information, broken links, and false statements will affect your business in one way or another. Fresh sites that offer insightful content to their readers will build a reputable brand and help create more leads and sales in the long run.