In the beginning of the year I set a goal for myself of updating my old blog posts. I’ve been going through them starting all the way at the beginning (I started this blog by doing a month long link up!) and doing a few posts every month throughout the year. So far, it’s been going great! I’ve seen some interaction on old posts that never had any sizable views before which is incredibly exciting.
Because of how helpful these changes have been for me, I wanted to share with you all how I update old blog posts!
How I Update Old Blog Posts
I started way back in the beginning of my Being Leanna days and have been slowly working backwards. You might only have a few to update but I suggest going through every post just to make sure!
Yoast SEO Plugin
First of all, I should note that I use WordPress but I’m sure there are similar plugins for Blogger. Ya’ll, this is the best plugin for WordPress. We all know that SEO (search engine optimization) is incredibly important for your blog posts and I never had this when I first started. The first thing I do is to work on my SEO.
I add in a keyword, something that resonates with the tone of the whole post. For this post I chose “organized” because that was the main topic. Staying organized. From there I also add in a “meta description” which is the description you see under the title when you Google a page. I don’t know about you guys but I always read that description when i’m looking for something on Google so I know I want it to be something that will give a potential reader a good idea of what to expect in my post.
Another amazing thing about Yoast is that they analyze the readability of your post. It’s been incredibly helpful when editing my posts because early on, I was all about the wordy sentences. Sentences that are too long aren’t easy to read. Strong writing has never been a skill of mine but i’m working on it! Also, In my old posts I never used subheadings either which visually break up all the words. I like to go back into posts and add relevant subtitles to break up all of the text. Subheadings are also a great place to add links to your other blog posts!
Obviously this is the most important part of any post. When I go through and edit and update old blog posts I always begin by reading the text out loud. This helps identify any sentences that are structured strangely and times when you repeat something too often.
You’ll also notice that over time your writing style has changed, mine certainly has. I like to go back and update old blog posts so that they’re more in my current voice. Back over a year ago I was still struggling to find my style of writing so it’s good to back through and edit things.
I have also gone back to edit the formatting of my words. What was I thinking loving centered text? Now, I justify all of my posts. I love how it looks, and I think it fits more with my style.
This one is a hard one. Sometimes I want to update the title but I don’t have the original picture to be able to re-edit. In those cases I generally just add onto the current title like I did in this case. The post went from “How I Stay Organized” to “How I Stay Organized- Using Multiple Notebooks” which gives a bit more of a glimpse into what the post is about. Always make sure your title is captivating!
Can’t forget the pictures! In my old posts I always just added pictures in here and there and never did much with them. When I go through and update my blog posts I like to resize the pictures (so they aren’t ginormous and load faster) and I like to make them all uniform in size. Back in the day I never added titles to my pictures either, big mistake. When you to to pin them on Pinterest there weren’t any captions at all. Not good.
Open up the picture editor and add in a title. I always rename pictures to have the same title as the blog post with my blog name at the end. I like the uniformity. The Alt caption is what shows up at the bottom of your picture when you post to Pinterest. Super helpful for anyone Pinning your images! Speaking of, there’s a pinnable image for this post at the bottom if you want to save this!
In addition to editing the pictures that are already in the post, if I can I like to add in a Pinterest friendly image. Vertical is the way to go for Pinterest and most of my old pictures were always horizontal. I’ll open up PicMonkey (it’s free!) and edit away until I get a nice, vertical image. This might just be me but I like to put my name on all of my pictures. Sort of like a water mark. Not sure how helpful it is, but it makes me feel better so I do it. (Except for these because they’re all screenshots and you can clearly see my website address)
Last, but certainly not least, I like to add in my thank you banner that you see below!
Questions of the day: How do you update old blog posts? What are your most used bookmarks? You can see mine in all of the screenshots above!