Website Mistakes – Stale Content

This mistake happens more so with website owners that have multiple sites than those that have just one or two but it happens to just about any website owner at some point or another.

What we’re talking about is stale or old content on the site.

A definition of stale would be:

Not fresh; musty; stagnant; having lost novelty or interest; having lost freshness, having lost force or effectiveness through absence of action, as a claim.

Any website can easily become any one of these things over time and, in some niche markets, even faster than others. Certain markets obviously have longer “shelf” life as the content is tried and true and works time after time. But, in other technological areas, information changes so rapidly that we need to update the content to make it relevant to the current standards.

Not only does the content tend to get stale but also does the look and feel. The design may have been state of the art 5 years ago but as you surf the web you can tell the sites that are new and the ones that have been around a while. Some visitors will take one look at the site and assume that the content must be old and irrelevant as well, although that may not be the case.

Remember, online people make judgments about the website product or service in a matter of seconds. So we must give them what they are looking for quickly.

Not only should the content and design be freshened, but also look at any dates you may have on your pages, such as at the top of the sales letter, many times we use a date in the opening of the letter, or in the copyright of the website.

Both of these areas of the website can easily be automated to dynamically change that information, either using an automated php or JavaScript code block.

This is pretty simple to find via an online search. We recommend the php instance of this code simply because it takes less code and is easier to implement and since it takes less code there is not as much unneeded text for the search engines to go through when spidering.

Editor’s Note: This post is pulled from Bret Ridgway and Frank Deardurff’s book “50 Biggest Website Mistakes,” available at http://50BiggestWebsiteMistakes.com.