It can be frustrating to publish a brilliant new piece of content, but find a similar article from 7 years ago continue to rank above yours. Why is that? Google’s John Mueller gave us some good answers.
You can read more about this over on this post at Search Engine Journal.
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Recently, a web publisher was asking why old content was outranking their fresh content. Google’s John Mueller gave quite a few thoughts on this, including:
“…freshness is always an interesting one because it’s something that we don’t always use. Because sometimes it makes sense to show people content that has been established.”
“It feels more like we just have so many signals associated with these pages. And it’s not that, like if they were to change, they would disappear from rankings. It’s more well, they’ve been around, they’re not doing things clearly wrong for as long a time. And maybe people are still referring to them, still linking to them.”
These old pages probably have a lot of links pointing to them, and Google has known for a while that they provided good information to users. Your new content might be excellent, but it could take some time for Google to see that.
Something else interesting that John said revolves around HTTPS. We all know it’s a ranking factor with Google, but John said “HTTPS is a ranking factor for us, but it’s really kind of a soft ranking factor. A really small ranking factor.”
You absolutely should be including HTTPS on your site, for a variety of reasons, but don’t expect huge gains in the search results for doing it.