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Content SEO case study

SEO Case study – the impact of renewing content.

How improving content on existing pages can greatly improve traffic on a business’s website and bring much more work.

Everyone knows that content is the most important thing in SEO.
But even when we already have some good content from niches that brings a lot of traffic – over time the traffic fades.
In such cases it is always advisable to improve and renew your content.
I chose to share the following case study to show exactly how to improve and what the impact might be.

As the subject company in this case study wishes to remain anonymous, I can’t point to any clues that might expose them and at the same time I wanted to thank everyone involved for making this case study possible – guys, thanks a lot (I know you’re reading this right now).

This is a large international fintech company. The company’s blog has over 6000 pages in all languages. We focused at this stage only on English.

The steps:

  • Research and Choosing: Choose as a start about 30 pages to improve. The criteria for selecting the pages:
    • Pages with good content but almost no traffic
    • Pages where traffic has decreased significantly in the last six months
    • Low hanging fruits – pages whose average position is really close to the first page. For example, an average position of 10.1 to 11
  • Brief: After we have chosen, go over the content and prepare a brief: what is the URL, what are the main phrases for which the page is ranked, who is the target audience for which the content will be written, what is the specific product that we would like to promote, etc.
  • Green light#1: Confirmation from the company that the page can be rewritten.
  • Writing the content on Google Docs with “track changes”.
  • Green light#2: Further confirmation of the content after it has been written
  • Upload to website

Guidelines for writing the content:

Since it is a renewing or rewriting existing pages, I was a bit confused about how to guide my writer.
Finally, after many consultations with the company’s team, we decided that it was imperative to focus on additional value.
That is:

  • Rewrite the page to fit the current time.
  • Add additional informative value to the pages such as: tables, graphs, updated statistics, photos, video, reference to relevant information, etc.

That is, not only to rewrite the text and “smear” another 1500 words, but to actually add value that was not there before. (My writer had to explain what new elements he added in each article).

So we uploaded all of the above as a plan on Google Sheets.

SEO plan on Google Sheets

Then we wrote and uploaded the revised pages.
Important note: We did not build links at all in the process.

For reasons of confidentiality I cannot reveal stuff that would reveal the company such as URLs of pages or absolute numbers.
But I can show you screenshots from the search console.

On most pages you see a clear growth, in most cases the impressive increase is in exposures because we did not build links to the articles after editing.

So without further ado – here are 7 examples:

  1. On the first page intended for “online product sellers”, there was very little traffic.
    Although the jump is small – (an extra click or 2 per day), the meaning is still doubling and even tripling and at the end of the month and that’s significant.
    Also, the amount of exposures increased by 200% on average!

2. Another page aimed at freelancers saw a nice increase from sparse traffic to daily traffic. 100% average increase in clicks and exposures.

3. On this page you see an interesting phenomenon: there is no increase in exposures but there is an increase in the positions of the main phrases and therefore you see a nice increase in clicks.

4. This is an informative page that talks about ways to get paid: here you see a nice increase in clicks and exposures in correlation towards the end of the period with more than a doubling in clicks and exposures.

5. Another informative page that talks about ways to get paid. Here you can see a nice increase in clicks, but beyond that – the number of exposures increased 10 times and with it the potential of the page.

6. On this page that reviews sites where freelancers can make money, you see a nice increase in clicks and more than a doubling of exposures.

7. In the last example, for dessert, you can see a rather impressive increase – from an average of a few clicks per day to hundreds per day. More than 10 times! Exposures increased 4.5 times so with some links the traffic can improve a lot more.

Summary and Conclusion

  1. The significant improvements happened in pages where the gap between the “before” page and the “after” page (the content rewrite) was large.
    For example – a page of 350 words that became a page of 2000 words with graphs and tables.
  2. The very fact that in most of the pages the significant improvement is in exposures, shows first and foremost that the potential of the pages has improved.
    From here, the obvious conclusion is that the next step is to further optimize the keywords and build links to these pages.
  3. We noticed that without additional value (other than the content) – such as tables, graphs, video, photos (I intentionally wrote photos at the end, because photos are always the first thing everyone improves and in this case it is considered a little additional value but still worth adding or replacing with better photos), etc., – the improvements aren’t as good, not even close actually.
  4. Pages where we saw an increase in traffic without an increase in impressions are pages that had a main phrase that already had many impressions but the position was poor. The mere use of the main phrase in the renewed rich text caused those keywords to jump in position.
    For example: a phrase that is in the 9th place jumps to the 2nd place – the same amount of exposures but an increase in clicks.