I like Yoast.com, not only for the great WordPress SEO plugin, but also the blog. On that blog several people write new articles and this last one, from Joost de Valk himself, on website maintenance was not only a great read, but a real eye-opener for me.
Since I merged some blogs I had into this site you did not see much new articles. The site's ranking and number of visitors declined as well as a result of that lack of activity.
Now I am taking Yoast's advice to do some Website Maintenance and Clean Up of Old Posts. When I now look back at the articles on this site I see that the oldest articles are way back from 2006.
And yes, a lot of them are outdated, some are still relevant but could use some TLC. So now I have to decide if I just will delete them, if I will merge some of them into a bigger article or update them with the latest knowledge. Of course I also need to decided which ones I want to redirect after the deletion or not.
To see what are the most visited pages and articles you can go into Google Webmaster tools and Google analytic's, if you have implemented that. So that will be a great help during the clean up process.
Those most visited pages will most certainly stay, but probably need to be updated.
Others really are going to be tossed as they no longer are relevant like news on the release version of Joomla! prior to Joomla! 2.5.x and 3.x.
Website Clean Up Results Impact on SEO
For me the biggest challenge of this clean-up is to make sure the result that this site clean up will improve for the benefit of the visitors. They will, hopefully, get better info to solve their problems and the site will contain more relevant up-to-date information.
As for myself, it will be a mirror to check my own progress over the years, both in knowledge as well as in writing English.
What is the biggest risk factor as it comes to SEO? I don't know yet, it's a challenge. I will most redirect the old url's for post that will be merged, but I will have some articles that I will simply delete.
By deleting them the site gets smaller, but as the other articles will become more relevant. Hopefully that will give more authority to the site so ranking will improve and visitor numbers will grow.
Editorial Calender & Schedule Plugin
One other thing I implement on this site is an Editorial Calender plugin. You can simply install it and check on your post schedule in a visual overview.
For me its a great way to schedule new posts, but also set a posting schedule that can be maintained much easier. You can make short notes and some title suggestions on ideas and set the base for any articles you want to write. Those short notes will be saved as Draft articles.
You can see in your schedule overview when it needs to be done and you can write ahead and release them automatically using WordPress planning option.
Need an article that was already written but would suite better after another planned article? Just drag it to when you want to have it published and plan it. But you can only do the later for posts that are not yet published.
Below you can learn more on this great productivity tool.
So keep an eye out for the changes and new posts.
In a month or so I will write an article on the results of this website clean up from an SEO perspective.
And yes, that article is already scheduled so I can write it during the next month as I keep an eye on this sites progress.