Google Says Only Update The Date When Making Significant Update To Content

It is that time of year when content creators take their content that has been performing well and updates it from the 2022 edition to the 2023 edition. But updating the references of 2022 to 2023 is not enough, and Google says only do that when you make a significant update to that content.

This topic comes up every year, SEOs who go by some sort of SEO script, by default just do it, they just update the 2022 editions to the 2023 editions with some minor tweaks to the content. But again, Google has been warning against relabling old content as new for years, saying only update the dates when there is a significant change to the content. Google even said that most evergreen content does not require any date changes at all.

So the topic came up again, let’s call it the 2023 edition. John Mueller of Google was asked about it on Twitter and said “Is there significantly new content? Then update the dates. Is there no significantly new content? Then don’t update the dates. We see a lot of spam & low-quality content that just arbitrarily updates dates (“Best fax machine for 2023″), it’s pretty obvious & embarrassing.” He did add “There’s nothing wrong with updating content, and when you make significant changes, updating the date (or using an update-date). Serious sites do that. Just tweaking, and saying “oh, still valid in 2023″ is not a significant update.”

Here are those tweets:

But I am sure you will hear, but it works – sure – it might. But this is a great opportunity to make the 2022 version significantly better – so maybe use that opportunity?

Forum discussion at Twitter.

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