Dates Or No Dates: That Is The Question!

Last Update: September 25, 2017

I've noticed an increasing amount of websites removing all dates from their posts.

There seem to be arguments for and against doing this. On one of my sites, it seemed to make sense, because nothing on there is date sensitive and it may put people off to see an old date there - even if it's still totally relevant to them.

However, I have noticed plenty of people removing dates from their sites in the internet marketing/make money online space.... when, a lot of those reviews and so on and even other informational posts, can become outdated quite quickly.

On the other hand, I can imagine some people being put off by an old review or post - even if it's still completely relevant.

Some people have claimed that people are less likely to trust blogs without dates on the post, but I don't know that there is any evidence that this is the case.

I do find it a bit irritating sometimes when I go to a post without a date - as I'm then unsure how recently it's been written and how accurate it is.

What do you think? Do you still have dates?

For now, I've settled for a plugin that actually states when a post was last updated. But that won't change the date in the SERPS, which I think can strongly influence whether someone clicks on the link or not.

(for anyone that doesn't know - there is a plugin that you can download that removes dates).

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SondraM Premium
I like dates. I also get a warm fuzzy feeling when I see an older article with a last updated date.
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IvyT Premium
Good question. On the one hand, I like that 'evergreen content' doesn't require dates, but there are times when I visit a blog and I'm actively searching for a date of publication or update so I can compare it against the most recent ideas in that domain.

I'm undecided, because my need for dates is specific to the kind of blog or content.
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WHearn Premium
Personally, I like to see the dates. It lets me know that the person cares about their site and is staying on top of things.
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dalwhu Premium
I like to see a date to a post so I can see if its outdated or not.
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NatNiches Premium
Good point!
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spatz007 Premium
Cite LOL
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spatz007 Premium
For my site current information is very important. The field is ever evolving. For me I'll keep the dates, and reassure my audience that the information is current. Where I site scholarly or scientific information I also include the date of publication and the source (linked to the document).
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NatNiches Premium
Yes, I think it can be particularly important in certain niches.
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fleurallen Premium
Hey Neh, I believe for 'ever green' (that is always relevant) content dates are not important. However if time important then yes dates would be handy. If ever I'm in doubt, I check out the comments on a website as they (to my knowledge) have the dates included.

Good discussion topic
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NatNiches Premium
Thanks for your input - appreciated! Nat
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Swangirl Premium
To me going to a post and not finding a date is annoying like you said. I would like to know if something is from yesterday or 5 years ago.

It seems more authentic to have dates, and I plan on keeping dates on all my posts.
Jessica
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NatNiches Premium
Yes, I do agree with those points Jessica. Thank you. I'd be interested to hear from some of the bloggers that have removed dates as well - mainly to know if they think it's improved their click-through rates and conversions. Nat
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JeannineC Premium
One of the most successful bloggers I know dates her posts, but then also dates her updates. It's been quite effective.
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NatNiches Premium
Interesting - thanks for the input.
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jvranjes Premium
What exactly is she doing with updates?

I have seen some use plugins to have posts always just one day old, which makes no sense when you have comments from three years ago.
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NatNiches Premium
Really, I haven't seen those plugins.... that's very odd! I definitely wouldn't go for that.
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JeannineC Premium
She actually does it manually, usually right after the sub-title, something like "(updated 9/17/17)".
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jvranjes Premium
Thank you. I was doing the same but it is complicated with a huge site.
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JeannineC Premium
Yes, it can be complicated, so you need to ask yourself some questions.

1. Is the content evergreen and just being tweaked, or is this a significant update?
2. Is this a topic which constantly updates, so that it is important to consumers to get the latest/greatest info?

Tweaks may not need a new date, unless you are competing to prove you've always got the most current info to attract that audience.
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PatsyC Premium
My content is evergreen which is awesome. Date or not it's always current so I don't mind the date there .
I saw in one of the comments here, to publish it as a page instead. If you have a blog roll I don't see how that will work.
It will end up in the menu with pages instead.
Look into that one first.
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NatNiches Premium
Yes - exactly Patsy, I have a blog roll, so that doesn't work for me. :)
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jvranjes Premium
If you have pages then you do not have a blog roll, it is reserved for posts. The post option remains in settings but you define a page as a home page and any trace of posts setting is gone.
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NatNiches Premium
Yes I know, that's why I wouldn't use pages instead of posts, (as someone suggested, to avoid having a date on it). That wouldn't work for my website. I have very few pages - and they're just basic things that are not appropriate for the blog roll.
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PatsyC Premium
Hi Jovo.

I have 5 pages.
I have a blog roll for my posts.
My 'Home' page IS my blog roll

You must be behind with updates.
I only know what I use.
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PatsyC Premium
Jovo below is trying to tell me I can't have a blog roll if I have pages? I think I know what I have on my own website.

My pages are main information that have their purpose.
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jvranjes Premium
Not sure what you are saying. I am behind of what?
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jvranjes Premium
"Jovo below is trying to tell me I can't have a blog roll if I have pages" How on Earth did you come to such a conclusion?

All sites around have both pages and posts.
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PatsyC Premium
Because I have both pages and a blog roll.

I thought maybe with updates you didn't know we can have both.
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PatsyC Premium
Hi, because you said it. I copied your comment so you can see what I mean....

"If you have pages then you do not have a blog roll, it is reserved for posts. The post option remains in settings but you define a page as a home page and any trace of posts setting is gone."



It sounds that way? I do have pages and a blog roll....
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jvranjes Premium
Oh God.

Let me try again.

If you have created only pages then your blog roll will be empty and you will have "nothing found" written in the place of the nonexisting objects in the existing blog roll which is your home page by default. So in order not to have such an ugly detail, you would define a page as your home page and everything related to blog roll would vanish forever. The options in settings would remain though, and you would always be able to have the blog roll back.

Do I now sound like somebody who has "updated" his basic knowledge?

I assure you, all my sites have both pages and posts, and this has been so from 2014, so I have already been "updated" for some time.
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PatsyC Premium
Ok, I get it now. I never would have thought that if you don't use the blog roll, it would be that way. I've never seen or heard of it before.

Thanks for the explanation, the other way sounded different.
For someone like me who had no idea, it didn't make sense how you worded it at the beginning.

I'm sure you are updated..I was being sarcastic in a joking manner.

I see from your training etc..that you are well educated and experienced Jovo.
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jvranjes Premium
No problem, sorry for losing patience, cannot forgive myself.
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PatsyC Premium
Hi Jovo no need to apologize. I didn't even notice that you lost patience.

It's easy to misunderstand while communicating this way.
We can write something out but another person can perceive it completely differently. This is why I get into detail hoping it will be understood properly.
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jvranjes Premium
This is tough. I think I would want to remove it, but physically it appears to be difficult with some themes. In one which I use it is just a click in settings.

But is it really good or bad is hard to say. My reason for wanting to remove them are my posts from almost 3 years ago. With the given date they look obsolete.

Comment on plugin; I tried a few in the past, no one worked properly, one would just leave an empty space instead of numbers while words would remain. It looked ugly. So what do you use?
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NatNiches Premium
Yes, that's how I feel really - with some of the older posts coming up to two years old.
The plugin I've used on a couple of my sites is called WP Date Remover - seems to work ok. I don't see anything it its place, it's just as though the date was never there to begin with. I guess could depend on your theme too. Nat
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jvranjes Premium
Do not remember if I tried it. OK, good to know that nothing remains when it works. Thank you.
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NatNiches Premium
Give it a go! Personally, I tried it on the websites I didn't use so much, in case it messed things up. But it's been on there for about a month now and it's been fine. :)
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Kickbacked Premium
September 25

Hi Neh

I started adding a date to my posts and also replies! I saw some people doing this. After seeing this being used, I started doing it because of the reminder of how when we were writing others through email, we always dated the letter.

Have a great day!

~ Sir Timothy
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NatNiches Premium
Hi Timothy,

I just mean on your actual website - not on the blog posts in here. Because some people are removing the dates on their website posts, often by the use of a plugin.

Thanks, Nat
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Kickbacked Premium
I see, do the dates also change when your post goes through an update?
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NatNiches Premium
With my main site, I have a plugin that shows the date the post was last updated, (as well as the original post date). That plugin is called: "post updated date." However, it only half does the job, because it won't change the date in the SERPS, which I think is probably the most important thing. For me, I look at the date of the post in the SERPs and it does influence which post I click on first sometimes.
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Kickbacked Premium
I am going to look at my site to see how or what happens when I update a post! Thanks!
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Kickbacked Premium
My site will allow me to change the post date when I update it, it shows the date when it was published. When updated, I can change the date for when I do a change or update to the post!
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NatNiches Premium
Yes you can manually change the date as well. I have republished a post recently - where you set the date/time for a few minutes in the future and then it republishes as a new post. If you have a blogroll, it will be published just like a new post though - it can be good for old content that doesn't get very much traffic. Especially if you also actually update the content. :)
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Kickbacked Premium
When I was updating, I was updating the date also. I did not think much about it until after I read your post
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FTurner8032 Premium
My thought is somewhat similar to you. If I am searching for some specific information, I tend to look at newer posts thinking it is more relevant. I don't really know if that is true, but that is often what I do, even it the new post is ranked several positions below the older one.

Personally, I haven't paid attention to dates on my sites. I guess the only question I would have is if I go back to an old post and revise it does that change the date of the post automatically.

If so then you should probably review your older posts from time to time and make some changes where necessary.

Thanks for posting this it is very interesting and worth thinking about and looking at from time to time.
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NatNiches Premium
Thank you! Well, that's the issue - updating it doesn't update the original date. I do have a plugin that now says "post late updated on ****" and the date, but it's not really ideal.

Anyway, I think it's something I'm going to be thinking about for sometime! :) It seems a lot of people have jumped on the no-date bandwagon.
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shelley8492 Premium
I like dates. If I am researching a computer issue and see many posts that are old, then I know it is not a new issue and I can probably find a fix. If it a medical or medicine issue, I will only look at the recent. I have the dates on my sites.
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NatNiches Premium
Thanks shelly!
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telemarktom Premium
I think it depends on the industry. For me working primarily in renewables, I love dates because it is so fast moving I often get people calling up asking about outdated information. If it was a page rather than a post I'd be behind the 8 ball. WIth a post I can simply say the info is outdated now. I think the same goes for online marketing.

The other thing with dates I now do religiously - if I ever write something with a date in it, such as solar power prices in 2017, I set up a reminder in Evernote for the date my time specific content expires along with the url so I can keep my site up to date.

The most obvious point is, if you don't want a date, just publish it as a page rather than a post.
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NatNiches Premium
Thanks for your thoughts!
That's a good idea - with the reminders set up! :)
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jvranjes Premium
Pages cannot work. I had this in one site and had to convert all to posts. There is a limit for items in the menu.
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NatNiches Premium
Yes - wouldn't work for me anyway, I have a blogroll as my homepage and I'd want everything to go there.
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