In the world of SEO and the Google algorithm, there are always hot tips and tactics that help you advance with the latest Google adjustment. In most cases over the years, tactics that are initially good ideas and meant to help, eventually get abused to the point of becoming a negative for you and your online presence. From old directory listings turning into lots of fake and useless directories to the importance of reviews leading to an entire industry of fake review companies popping up, there is always a downside to every good SEO strategy or hot topic.
The Rise of Evergreen Content for SEO
With recent Google algorithm updates rewarding fresh content that answers search queries, there is a lot of heat on the topic of evergreen content or content that is basically always correct and relevant. I’ve seen many small businesses suddenly invest a lot of money in evergreen blog posts, thinking this is their permanent answer to SEO success. The problem is this is going to lead to some problems. When it comes right down to it, good SEO is constant work on providing good, useful content to your users. In most cases, generic answer that means less work and less need to update your copy, are not going to end up being the right answer.
Why Evergreen Popped Up as a Tactic
Google began pushing down old content in the rankings and rewarding updated content that was more “fresh” with better answers. What would seem to be the easy answer to keeping your content fresh is to create content that is always viewed to be correct and relevant, leading to the evergreen concept in SEO and content marketing.
Why it is the Wrong Answer for SEO
If you want to differentiate yourself in the SEO world, along with all of the other factors, your content and user experience is critical. Google and users typically don’t reward sites for laziness, which in many cases is how companies are approaching evergreen content. Be just generic enough to always be right. This tactic, for the most part, keeps you from ever actually being useful. The best content is fresh content with actually useful and relevant information. By trying to be evergreen and avoid updating your content with fresh new ideas, you avoid providing users with useful information, which will lead to a bad experience, and most likely a tumble down the rankings.
Fresh Content is the Answer for SEO
Instead of trying to reduce the workload and provide generic information that people can find anywhere, focus on keeping your content fresh. Many small business owners ask me what to blog about. There has to be information in your industry that is worth writing about to answer your customers’ questions, and even more so, updating old content to make it relevant to the current situation is definitely a worthwhile blog post. Don’t be afraid to write about something you wrote about last year. Chances are there have been enough changes in the market or the tactics in the past year to make it a worthwhile endeavor. You can even go back and take the old post and redirect that url to the new one.