How to find out when a web page was last updated

Updated April 17, 2017

It's important to know the last time a webpage was updated. The date lets you know if you are getting current information. When using web resources in research check the dates on articles to make sure you aren't using outdated material. You might be interested in doing business with a website owner. The date lets you know that the owner still actively maintains the site. You just need to take a closer look to find the last time a webpage was updated.

Check the website's blog, if it has one. Unlike web pages, blog posts have dates. A blog post with a recent date doesn't necessarily mean that the website was updated on the same date but does indicate that the owner is still around. See if the owner has blogged about updating the website or needing to update the webpage.

Look at the page's copyright notice, often located at the bottom of a sidebar or in the footer of the page. It usually lists a date range that begins with the year the website was founded and ends with the current year. If it doesn't include the current year, this may indicate that the owner has forgotten to update the copyright or hasn't maintained the page since last year.

Let JavaScript do the work for you. Go to the page you are curious about, then copy and paste the following code (without the quotation marks) into the address bar: "JavaScript:alert(document.lastModified)." A popup should appear on your screen that includes the date and time the page was last changed.

Read the website's information carefully. On a website about an ever changing field such as medicine, fashion or technology, look for context clues that tell you about the time that the page was written. These clues include mentions of news scandals, pop culture references or scientific breakthroughs. The presence of outdated stories or research could indicate that the site has not been updated recently.

Contact the owner and ask how old the site's material is. You may make a new friend and find out even more information about your subject. If the owner doesn't respond, it may be a clue that the site is no longer actively maintained.


Keep track of future updates. Subscribe to the RSS feed for the site to be notified whenever a new post appears.

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About the Author

Sara Gilmore is a freelance writer who has been creating web content for the last four years. Her writing has appeared on eHow and her own blogs and websites. Gilmore has a degree in paralegal studies from Kaplan College.