Guest Blogging: What You Need to Know
Guest Posting

Guest blogging is a diminishing tool for SEO and page ranking purposes

Why is guest blogging taboo these days when it use to be one of the best ways to get valuable links and site content?

The web, as you may know, is constantly changing.  These changes are typically guided in some way by search engines and how they compute their page rankings based on their algorithms.  Google is constantly changing their algorithm in an effort to stay ahead of SEO abuse tactics and to provide you with the most relevant search results possible.

Guest blogging then

It use to be that guest blogging was a great way to get some content on your site that you did not have to write yourself, as well as build back links.  A back link is a link to your website from another website.  So, the more back links a website has out there, the more popular it will be and the more weight Google will put into it’s ranking.  Back links are like votes.  Providing a link to another website is giving that other website your “vote”.  When another website links to you, they are giving you their “vote”.  So, the more links out there pointing to you, the more votes you have, and the more popular you are.  It is not all about popularity, but that is a big determining factor when Google determines your website’s “worthiness” to be displayed in search results and where to place it.

When an author was guest blogging on behalf of another website in the past, they were providing themselves back links to their products.  This would help their website because typically they would post articles on behalf of websites who already rank well.  The reason they do this is the referring website boosts their page ranking.  Receiving a link from a well trusted, established, and popular site can do wonderful things for your search ranking.  In the past, this was the biggest way to reach other audiences as well as boost your website’s standings with the search engines.

Guest blogging now

Today guest blogging is becoming more and more taboo.  I started this article mentioning that the web is always changing.  Google and other search engines are always changing their algorithms based on a wide array of metrics.  One of the catalysts for these changes is to respond to abuse by spammers and shady website practices.  According to Matt Cutts (head of spam at Google), Google is set to take away the relevance of back links from guest post content.  So, any back link pointing from a guest post to another site or services other than the site being posted on, would not be rated at all.  In fact, may count against you as “spammy” behavior.  The reason Google is taking this tactic out of it’s process is because of abuse.  Abuse that authors take to create spammy content that leads users to a not so well ranked website where they typically try to sell you something.  Essentially web leaches.  Authors of website’s that you probably don’t want anything to do with in the first place.

Acceptable guest blogging

Guest blogging can still be valuable.  However, in order to not come across as “spammy” or abusive to Google, you need to do two things.

  1. Make sure you only accept guest blogging from people you trust.
  2. Make sure those individuals understand all links pointing away from your site on those posts are nofollow.

A nofollow link tells search engines to not follow that particular link.  Because of this, there is no page rank being transferred from the link.  This takes away the element of only posting content in order to boost page rankings.

You want an author that will post good content to your site and one that you don’t have to worry about.  These types of authors are typically other business partnerships you have with like minded and similar skill set individuals.  Their content is on par with yours and they bring something valuable to the table for you.

As far as a nofollow link, those are achieved by placing a rel=”nofollow” in your link markup.  So an author writing on your behalf can link to his website or even his/her services.  They simply have to make the link a nofollow in order to do so and be in the good graces of Google.  The author can get traffic to his website; that is not what Google wants to crack down on.  What Google wants to eliminate is the problem of authors writing content on another website solely for the intent to boost their own page rankings.  Here is an example of what a nofollow link would look like:

<a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>Google</a>

In that example, Google is the author and placing a link to their home page within their post.  However, they are not trying to take any of the good standings or credit from the page they posted the link from.  In this way, they can get traffic to their site, but not appear to be spammy or manipulative.

Back links are still important

You still want to get links from other websites.  Google is not throwing away the baby with the bathwater.  They are giving merit to quality back links that come from page content from within a website.  Blogs and revolving content are different than a normal page on a website in the sense that a page is from the website owner and a fixed part of that website.  A post from a blog can be the owner or any one of the many members that are able to write posts on that particular website.  For this reason, it is important to distinguish the difference so that the internet does not become so polluted with spammy writing that it is intolerable to find a genuine article.

Want to learn more about how you can use this effective SEO tactic to get more views? Check out this video by SEO link builder Julian Goldie to go even more in-depth!