As a full-time guest blogger, I have done quite a bit of research finding new blogs and finding resources for my article, and there is one thing that always bothers me: the date. Some blogs show the date on posts, but others seem to hide the date. As a researcher, hiding the date is extremely annoying because I never really and truly know if an article is still relevant. As a blog owner, hiding the date is a little bit more appealing because it keep my older articles appealing. This led me to wonder: Is it better to leave the date on the blog posts or off?
Reasons to Keep the Date Visible
Most bloggers leave the date visible on blog posts for the convenience of readers. A date on a blog posts lets readers know whether or not “breaking news” is actually breaking. In other words, it keeps your entire blog honest. There is no guessing and no confusion when it comes to information found on your blog; and readers like that. It allows readers to make an informed decision about whether or not they want to use the information found in an article.
Many bloggers also feel comfortable adding the dates to blog posts because his/her blog offers a lot of timeless, or evergreen, content. If this is the case, no reader is going to care if the content was written yesterday or three years ago. Putting the dates on these blog posts will help show that you have nothing to hide even if it wouldn’t have mattered in the first place.
Reasons Why the Date Might Be Better Left a Mystery
Sometimes WordPress themes make it difficult because they are automatically setup to not show the date. In most cases, these themes make it hard to figure out a way to show the date. If a blog is full of content that will not become outdated, then it may not be worth the time to figure out if your blog needs dates.
Some bloggers also leave the date off of blog posts because they are concerned that it will scare readers away—timeless content or not. If someone is browsing around the Internet looking for information, he/she is of course going to go with the more relevant content. This is especially true if the date does matter on the content. For this reason, the blogs full of outdated content will get passed up, so blog owners sometimes hide the date to avoid this fate.
As always, it’s up to the blog owner. I personally feel that there should always be a date on a blog post so that a reader can make the decision on his/her own. If your blog has a lot of old and outdated content, time is better spent creating new content than figuring out how to hide the dates on all of your posts.
Do you ever pay attention to the dates on blog posts? Do you think it’s best to show them, hide them, or does it not matter?
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