I’ve discussed what to do when you have products that expire. But what do you do when you have services or information that expires? Is there a way to retain and even monetize that traffic?
Let’s say your company used to offer a service like computer security scanning or a real world service like car washes in your parking garage. For whatever reason these services weren’t profitable, and you stopped offering them. If your web pages rank and drive traffic, there’s no reason to give that up. Instead, try putting up a page explaining you no longer offer the service and why. If there’s someone else offering the service, you can be helpful by providing a link or two. If you’re looking to monetize the page, you can try adding some affiliate links or tasteful adsense integration.
If you’re looking for an example of this in practice, here’s a page from the Hayden Planetarium in New York about the laser shows they no longer offer. When they redid the planetarium a few years ago, the new ceiling removed the need for a laser projector.
In most cases I would recommend leaving the original URL unless you have a really good reason to move it. If you do move it be sure to issue the proper 301 response code.
So what are the takeaways from this post:
- Look for opportunities to keep traffic for keywords and phrases for services you no longer offer
- Change the content to let then users know that you no longer offer the service or that the information has expired
- Look for ways to upsell to a new service on your site, or link to someone who can
- Look for ways to monetize with affiliate links or adsense
- Try to keep the URL consistent; if not, issue a 301 redirect