A website contains multiple web pages and every webpage published publicly on the web has a published as well as last updated date attached with it. The webpage has a date when the page was created, and the latest updated date, if it is updated after its creation. Along with these two dates, there is also an index date shown in the search results. In this article, we will be covering how to see when a website was last updated.
You need to know one of these dates for several reasons, like links on your page or for content validation purposes, or if you are citing the webpage.
How to see when a website was last updated?
Every webpage published on the internet has three main dates attached to it.
The first one is the Published date; it is an original date on which the author published the webpage (article) to make it available on the internet globally.
The second is the Last updated date or last modified date, the date on which the author makes some changes and updates the article.
The third one is the Indexed date, the date on which search engine crawlers index the webpage for public display in the search results.
Check HTTP Header
The HTTP protocol allows web pages to send and receive information. The HTTP details are included in the header of the webpage, you can easily find the latest updated date if you know how to find it.
You can also find the updated date with the help of the Free HTTP checker tool. All you need to do is copy and paste the URL and it generates a report that includes the latest updated date, the server, the content type, connection, and much more.
Alternatively, if you do not want to use the free checker tool, just right-click on the web page and then select “View page source.” You will be shown a selection of code and within one of the <meta> tags, you will see the latest updated date. To find the meat tags, press the “Ctrl+F” key together from your keyboard and then enter “meta” to search for it.
Check XML Sitemap
You can use XML Sitemap to understand a structure of a website in detail, apart from viewing the old web pages of a site.
Almost all websites have their own XML sitemap to inform search engines about the structure of the website. One can check the updated date of a website through it, depending upon the structure of a Sitemap.
- To check the updated date, open the Sitemap of any website using the URL which is like “https://yourwebsitename.com/sitemap.xml”.
- You can then check out the “Last Modified” date against the web page URL that you are looking for.
- You can see in the below image of our sitemap; each page has its own last modified date which will help search engines to understand the content modification date and index the webpages accordingly.
Another method to find the last updated date of a website is Google Search. You can use Google search with the search query as “inurl:yoursitename.com/page-url/“ followed by adding “&as_qdr=y15” at the end of the search URL. Once you have done, press enters and it will make Google display a meta-description of the desired website.
You will see metadata include dates for recent updates, apart from the older versions of a website.
The date shown in Google search is the last indexed date which should be approximately equal to the last updated date of that particular web page.
Display Update date in WordPress Site
If you own a website, you can show the last updated date on your web pages throughout the website. It is an easy task to manually add data and text to HTML pages. Though, you have to use a couple of functions in the case of PHP-based WordPress sites.
In most of the WordPress themes, a published date is a default and it will be using the function like below.
Published on <?php echo get_the_time(); ?>
Further, if you want to display the last updated/modified date, use the below function and display anywhere inside a dynamically generated WordPress PHP page.
Updated on <?php echo get_the_modified_time(); ?>
You can replace the existing code or add this code on your blog post template, normally in a single.php file.
Use Google Cache
Google Cache is one of the most straightforward methods to access the last update dates for your web pages, it may help you to verify the dates when used appropriately.
There are many websites you can find on the internet which allow users to download cache checkers for Google, for free!
You can directly search on Google to find the cached pages; since website URLs usually contain a small arrow when presented as search results on Google. Just click on that arrow and you may grant user access to cache data from that particular website.
Once you get access to the required information, you can save a screenshot for your future references. The cached data will contain the last updated dates, which will help you to analyze the data and plan your future assignments accordingly.
Using Command URL
Though, this very method only works on a static webpage and not on dynamically generated pages.
Launch a web browser and open the webpage that you want to find the last updated date.
Now, click enter to see a popup showing the last updated or modified date of that page.
We do hope you will find the above article useful and informative. Lastly, we would like to end this post by mentioning that there are several ways to find the last updated date of a web page. But, HTTP header and XML Sitemap methods are the most reliable ways, since they show an exact date that is automatically generated.
Other than the above, you can use other methods as well, that are approximate when HTTP header or XML Sitemap details are not available.
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