Update An Existing Post or Create A New Post?

Let’s say you spent all this time writing an excellent post a few weeks ago, but now some new information has come out that makes this post seem old. It was a lot of work, and the post is still quality. Still, you don’t know what to do about it. Should you create a new post with the new content or update an old post with the new content?

Update the Old

First off let me explain why anyone would bother updating a post. You would update an older post that brings in a lot of traffic so that it can still be thought of as useful by the users. You certainly can’t argue an old post receiving more stumbles, can you? This is one of the primary reasons to keep older quality content up-to-date. However, frequent changes can change SEO rankings.

Make Anew

A new post with the updated content (which, preferably, links to the old) could be a great way to handle this situation. A new page is better for SEO purposes, and it also gives readers something new to look at. Both of these results are reasons enough to hit the “new post” button on your content management system.

Why Not Do Both?

The solution, in my opinion, would be to write a new post now and update the old post later. Obviously, you want to create the new post to give readers something to read, and people could simply go back to the old article via links if they wished. Afterwards, you update your old post with some of the new information, and then link to your newer post. This gives people that come from search engines and social sites a reason to go to another page on your site, and if that happens, they are much more likely to subscribe.

I make a habit to update older posts on my blogs, and while many of my readers will never notice these changes, I have seen the impacts it can have with driving new visitors to updated content.

Essentially, you get the best of both worlds using this method, and I think you should give it a try. I think the potential for more stumbles, diggs, reddits, and traffic far outweighs any SEO penalties an article might receive. I also really appreciate an author who takes the time to keep older content up-to-dateā€”it shows that he or she cares about what was written.

12 thoughts on “Update An Existing Post or Create A New Post?

  1. Hello,

    I’m newer here and stopping in to say hi.
    I hope everyone has a good day.


  2. That is one way to handle it Of course, when I update an article, I properly make notice that I have updated the content. If any content is ever erased, I will use a strikeout to make notice of it.

  3. I just discussed this the other day on my own blog: I add new content through the Comments section. I just add a comment to the post like any other with the new information. If the story changes significantly, I’ll make a new post and link to the old one in the body, then go back to the old one and add a comment for readers to see the new one.

    I never update an existing post with new information; I only edit older posts for typos, grammar, structure, etc., and change the tags whenever necessary. I think it’s important, as it is a living document. I don’t even edit them when they contain incorrect information – just comment and say “Whoops!” Of course, I will correct any misinformation if the post is very recent or could be dangerous, but since I blog about pop-culture and other innocuous things, that’s never a problem.

  4. I’m in the camp of creating new posts and linking to the old while never really going back in time and updating the old posts. But good tips none the less.

  5. I do both. I agree, but sometimes if the change is too significant, I create a new blog post and link the old and new ones to each other. Sometimes old information have its value too.

    For a post that gets lots of search engine traffic, I’ll make sure it is updated regularly.

  6. James,

    I do both. You never know how people are going to find the info you post. If they find the new post, obviously referring back to the original post is essential. For the same reasons, failing to update an old post is a bad idea.

    Finally, those on feed readers may never see the update (unless you’re running an old WordPress, or such), so it helps them get more value from your blog as well.


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