Thursday, November 12, 2015

How To Bring an Old Post to New Life

I've never claimed to be an expert blogger, but what I am really great at is online advertising and marketing, thanks to spending many years in that field of work.
Although the two are different, they have very many similarities.

Thanks to having worked with news sources I also have a pretty good background in smart SEO practices for written materials.  Which also makes it quite helpful in blogging SEO.  These reason's are why I feel I am a pretty good source of information on this subject and have decided to tell you more about it today to help you while you are trying to grow your blogs.



Today, I am going to tell you the correct way to bring an old post back to life, or how to re-create an old post.  As well as make sure you understand the do's and don'ts of guest blogging.  In ways that will make sure you don't accidentally have your blog tagged by search engines in bad ways.

I'm going to do my very best to simplify this a little so that even the non-techies can understand it without hearing all the big SEO (Search Engine Optimization) terms and having no clue what I am talking about.
So if you are great with SEO, and you are wondering why the post sounds very basic, then that is why!


BRINGING OLD POSTS BACK TO LIFE
& RE-CREATING POSTS

Let's start with bringing an old post back to life, or re-creating a post from the past.  If you are anything like me, you probably do take a bit of time creating a post.  I estimate about an hour to write a post, and 20-30 minutes to create the images for the post.  Unless its a research post, which then of course takes quite a bit more time.

Occasionally, especially if you have been blogging for years, you may want to go through and pick some older posts that you really liked that you ran years ago and give them a makeover and re-run them.

Did you know there is a right and wrong way to do this?

WRONG WAY - Copy and pasting an old post into a new post, exact work for word.

Why is this wrong? The search engine crawlers they don't like to see the exact same content on more than one web page, they think of it as copied material and allegedly hurts your site to do so.  It's also called a big SEO no no Duplicate Content Penalty.
Google treats it as plagiarism, yes even if it is from your own site, and the biggest mistake any writer can make is copying someones work, and lets face it if you want your posts to come up in search engines Google is a big one you don't want to have them bury your site because it considers it plagiarism.

On a side note: If you like to run Adsense ads on your blog and learn a little side income.  If in time your site has been tagged as copied content, they can actually ban you from being able to run ads on your site.

How to fix it? You've probably gotten better in your writing anyway, so re-write it.  You can still imply the same meaning behind it, and yes you can copy some of it word for word.  But for the most part, re-invent it and make it better.  Possibly even add more content to it, new things you've learned about the subject along the way.

Another idea, why not take a past post and put an opposite spin on it.  Like if you wrote a post on How to Run Uphill, why not re-create it to How to Run Downhill and establish even more credit on your blog as a how to resource that covers the subject.




I have a smaller blog, will it really matter?  Depends on if you ever plan on growing your blog, or would like to run advertising on it.  Although this is a subject that is widley debated in the SEO field, I like to look at it like this.  If you can learn to do something correctly why not do it!  No matter your motives now for your blog, they may change later and if you practice good habits now, then if you change later you won't have to worry about things.


GUEST BLOGGING

It's true one of the best ways we as bloggers can get our name out there to a new audience is guest blogging on larger blogs than our own.  That is where we create a post for a website/blog that likely has links to our own.  It involves gaining a new audience and link sharing, the very things that help build blogs.

So often bloggers create an awesome post for another website or blog and they are so excited because they spent so much time on it, they want to share it on their own site as well.  So they copy and past the exact post they wrote, and put it up on their own site and think nothing else of it, because they wrote it.  This can be a huge mistake!

If you are a guest blogger on another website/blog never post the exact same post up on your own blog.  Two things can happen, both sites can be dinged by the web crawlers as using copied news sources.  Or if one site is much bigger than the other, the smaller can actually be dinged more for bad SEO practices.

Most news media/larger blogs should be telling you and having you agree you won't do this before you guest post.  In fact if you write for online newspapers, like I have in the past they will even make you sign an electronic waiver that you wont do this.
However, if you are guest posting on blogger sites, bloggers may not know to tell you this, or they may even suggest you post it up on your own after a few weeks.

IS THERE ANYTHING I CAN DO IF I WANT TO SHARE MY WORK ON MY OWN SITE?

YES!!!!  There is one thing you can do, to avoid getting in trouble with the search engine crawlers and it's so simple. At the beginning of your re-post, add this tag into your HTML field (replacing the website with the actual link to where your original article ran on the other site.)

<link rel=“canonical" href="www.theblogsitethatyouroriginalpostappeared.com"/>
(Canonical is a computer word that means, original version.)

That is it, and its so simple and if you do that you can re-post your guest post anywhere else you want, and no penalties will be given to you!

If you are asked to submit posts to other sites, or other sites ask you if they can share your work on their site.  It's still okay, go for it, get your name out there!
More than likely if they are a bigger website they are already doing this.  But it is completely within your right to let them know they need to attach the original version link to the post for correct SEO practices.

If you don't do this, basically when this happens, think of it as the little guy (smaller blog) is the one that will get dinged the most and the smaller one is likely going to be the one who gets the penalties. Or it will be the one who copied and put the content up 2nd.

Don't try to trick the system either.  When I say trick, I mean don't think changing a few words here and there or deleting one word here or there will be a quick fix.  Just add the simple HTML link and there are no worries you can re post as you want!

We may think of the internet as such a large and massive thing, that how could it possibly find my copied post mistake?  But if you are thinking that, you are wrong. Search engines are crawling the web and pulling new data all the time.  You are not immune just because you think you are small in the vast world that consists online.  Some of the larger blogs, have even been web crawled 10 times in just a few hours of their post going live.




So the keys to take from this are:

* Never copy and past entire posts, word for word to re-run them from your own blog.

* Never share your own exact guest post on your blog without attaching an original copy link.

* If you are going to bring a new post back to life, take the time to re-create it, meaning re-write it, give it new substance and meaning.


DON'T SWEAT IT

Even though this is a How To post, don't let anything I talked about above scare you if you have made mistakes in the past!
Just start correcting things going forward.  If you have the time, you can definitely go into past guest posts that you have re posted and take a few seconds and add that tag at the beginning.  But don't worry about rushing anything this minute/week/month.  Just relax and practice better habits going forward.

This is one of those subjects that many argue on, and wonder who and if anyone actually gets penalized and how they are actually penalized.  I have heard so many back and forth on it, I personally don't think the argument matters.

For myself, if I know something "might" not be right, I am not going to do it and I will do what I know "will" be okay.

Education even in the blogging world is key to not only building a better blog, but increasing your chances of growing your blog.


So tell me, was this something you already knew about?

Do you find these types of subjects on my blog helpful?  This year during blog hops, and on the first Thursday of the month I have been hitting up Grow Your Blog topics, I'd love to know if this is something you'd like me to keep up, or not for the future!



32 comments :

  1. I revisited an old post earlier this week, but revamped it before hitting publish. Although a lot of the ideas were the same, I elaborated on what I had written, made some edits, and most importantly, avoiding copying and pasting the entire thing. By revisiting an old post, it allowed newer followers to be exposed to content that they may not have taken the time to search my blog archives for.

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  2. Another awesome post!!

    I didn't know any of this information!

    Thanks-learning so much from you and I appreciate it!!

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  3. Michelle@Running with AttitudeMarch 8, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Very helpful! Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Denise @ Healthy Family MediaMarch 8, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Thanks so much for posting this, Kristy! I had no idea about the canonical HTML code that you can add. As a new blogger last year, I had a blogger ask me if I would guest post and said it was okay to share a post I'd already written on my blog. I did the post, changing it up a bit. Then I learned about how Google dings people and have been worried about it maybe being a problem since then. Good to know I can "fix" it now with some code :) Thanks again for sharing!

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  5. I did not know this. I just recently copied one I re-posted. But I did add some stuff at the beginning and changed some content in the body too. Oops. Now I know. Thanks for the info!

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  6. Rebecca Jacobs NCMarch 8, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Thanks for posting this! Being new to the blogging world, I am always looking to learn new things! This was definitely very helpful, especially since I have started doing guest blog posts.

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  7. Tricia MissSippiPiddlinMarch 8, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Thank you so much for posting this! I had no idea about the Canonical. None. I do have a question for you and maybe it's a simple answer or maybe for another post all together. Is there a way to check to see if someone is on Google's blacklist?

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  8. I didn't know about the copying - that it can be considered plagiarism even if it's from your own site. I guess the key is to just keep writing new content.

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  9. Your welcome, I am glad you found it helpful!

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  10. I actually wrote this post, a while back when I was starting to do the same thing. I pulled about 20 posts that did fairly well 3 years ago, and I am re-doing them and putting different focus on different things (I was terrible at blogging 3 years ago, LOL) so it's been easy to re-do them. But as I was doing it, it occured to me that others might not know the right and wrong, and so I thought I'd run this post. But ya, I plan on airing a few re-makes in the coming months:)

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  11. Glad you found it helpful, thanks for stopping by!

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  12. I've been doing a few re-do's on posts from 3 years ago, and as I was pulling the ones I want to start working on, it occured to me not a lot of bloggers may know this so I thought I'd share.
    When I worked in online advertising/marketing this was such a huge thing, so I am glad to share some things I have learned along the way!

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  13. Oh you are totally welcome! I spent years working in online advertising and marketing and little tidbits of knowledge have really helped me and I love helping others!
    Oh, ya you can fix it. And don't worry, about past things even if you can't go back and fix them all. It's just great info to use going forward so as you grow your blog, you can make sure not to do anything that might keep a search engine like google wanting to serve your post if others are searchng on the subject:)

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  14. Thanks for stopping by! I am really glad to hear it helps! It's one of those things not a lot of people know about, but such a few easy fixes can keep a blog looking in a positive light for the search engines!

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  15. Actually I do know, I think there are many ways to check but one I remember from years ago is: http://www.blacklistalert.org/ they will search to see if you are on any of the search engines they check. But I know there are more, just google something along the lines of finding out if your sight is blacklisted and I bet a few will come up and you can try a few out.

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  16. Ya, its kind of a funny thing, but if a blog for instance has lots of duplicate content it knocks down the creditiability. However there are several easy fixes, yes writing new content is always best. But you can re-create as long as you re-create and avoid copying. Although I didn't mention this above, its also helpful to have a different post title even if it is a similar post to a previous one.

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  17. lisarunsforcupcakesMarch 8, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Woa, this is really good info. I had no idea about the re-posting. I mean, I figured it was bad juju for SEO but didn't know the reasoning behind it.

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  18. Glad you found it helpful:) Ya, there is definitely a right way to do it to avoid the "bad SEO juju" :)

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  19. As always, fantastic tips, Kristy! I never knew the part about re-posting guest blog content. I haven't done many guest posts but good to know for future reference. I haven't ever considered re-using my own content on my blog but I like your idea of pulling old content and putting a different spin on it!

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  20. I always love all your blogging tips and can use them all. I have so much to learn and am having fun doing it. I am still working on make great posts in the first place so that next year maybe they'll be worth re-creating. Learning lots through your blog hop too and just signed up for the giveaway hop! Thanks!

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  21. Thanks so much for this info. I'm trying to figure out how to repurpose some old ones so this is perfect timing!

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  22. Great information! I have a few posts I need to add that link to!

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  23. Thanks Sun, I am glad you found it helpful!

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  24. I am glad you are enjoying the hop and learning things from it that may help you in the future! Blogging is really a fun world, isn't it!

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  25. Ya, the copy and paste thing is common for bloggers, but ya just a few edits to re-create and make it better and you won't have to worry about any bad SEO problems on the blog:)

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  26. Glad you found it informative. Yup, that little link can save ya any SEO troubles with guest post blogging!

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  27. These are great tips! Had no idea about some of the stuff so thanks for sharing!

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  28. Yikes! I didn't know about the posting the same thing to my other blogs. Some posts I do are appropriate for another one of my blogs, so I post it there, too. So, the html reference you gave, does it have the quotation marks in the right places? There are three. Should there be four?
    I'm going to have to go through my blogs and check for duplicates. Thanks for the tip.

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  29. Kristy, another question about the canonical sharing of my own blog posts. You have carrots and quotation marks in the link you showed in your post. Do those quotes and carrots stay when you post the original post?
    Also, if I mention in my new blog post that I am reposting and give the link to the old post, do I still need to have the canonical thing included in the new post?
    Thanks for your help! You're a peach!

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  30. I am glad you caught my mistake!!!! Sorry about that you are correct I missed a " mark. The quotes do stay, you would just replace the URL with the link to the original post.


    If you are reposting an old post from your own blog, technically you should re-create it so it's not exact or give it a new spin on it, just so it doesn't hurt your site SEO with lots of duplicate content.


    But yes anytime you are copying the exact same post, you should always add the canonical HTML code at the beginning of any repeat post so you don't get dinged as badly for duplicate content.


    As far as SEO and website crawlers it won't make any difference if you state in the post itself that it is a duplicate, having the HTML code is enough for the web crawlers. Any text you add, would just be for you, you also don't necessarily need to leave a link in the post itself to the original, the canonical is good enough, unless you want to add the extra for yourself.
    The correct code is:

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