Don’t ditch the old stuff just because it’s in the way

Here’s an interesting idea. Do you have a lot of old stuff on your website, which is cluttering up things and not getting much in the way of page views, but… there are reasons you shouldn’t ditch the material entirely? I’m thinking of older products which don’t need to be pushed, but which do still get searched-for. Or technology background articles which made sense to publish as a series, but look a bit lightweight now. There are all sorts of pages that might have been deleted, but haven’t for a reason.

Why not merge it into something more substantial? A bunch of technology backgrounders could make a single, authoritative guide. Data pages on old products could be combined into a historical page which has a lot of justification to exist (for users hanging on to the products or just coming across them), but doesn’t get in the way of current products. It’s amazing how many companies ‘retire’ models and remove all mention of them on their website, ignoring that potential customers don’t know they’ve been withdrawn and will be searching for them for years afterwards.

Just don’t forget to properly ‘301 redirect’ any pages you merge!