This last instalment on filtering is more about keeping content fresh rather than filtering, although fresh content gives us the opportunity of creating new tags and new ways of cross-referencing content.
When a user returns to a favourite section or page, they expect to see new or updated content. In Filtering Part 3, I talked about grouping stories or articles under a topic or category tag to extend the user journey and avoid dead-ends. In order to do this, fresh content always needs to be connected to a category or topic. Although an article might seem like a one-off in a particular section, it should have relevance to content that has been previously posted. This ensures that there is more than one user path to fresh content. On index pages or section pages, it is important to emphasize fresh content. On deeper level pages, it is important to relate fresh content to recent or archived articles.
Using fresh content as building blocks is also important. An example of using fresh content as building block would be using Geo-tags. Geo-tagging offers another avenue for building relevant aggregate pages with a mix of new, recent and archived content, brought together under a hyper-local focus.
An article about a new car dealership will be relevant in the auto section of the newspaper and may have no further relevance to any other stories. Using geo-tags, however, would make it relevant to stories and events in the area where the car dealership is located. This is just one way to ensure that all articles are a part of something, not just arbitrarily linked. Human intervention plays a part here too.
While relevant content is great for the search engines, you need to consider the flavour of the content being displayed. A machine process really can’t do this for you. If you take the car dealership example above, you may not want to relate that content via geo-tags to a story about a robbery that happened down the street. Consider your audience.
Well, that’s my four-part rant on filtering. I’ll keep sharing more insights on the topic as I discover new and creative ways to filter and change the flavour of content online.