Guest blogging as an SEO tool – does it make sense?

3 October 2018

SEO content marketing or guest blogging – call it what you will, the terminology is not important here. It’s about publishing your thoughts and articles on someone else’s blog. Does it make sense and should you get interested in this technique? Let’s take a closer look at guest blogging.

What is guest blogging about and its connection to SEO

Guest blogging is not a new thing in the world of SEO. In some circles and markets it’s one of the base (and easiest for people without technical knowledge) tactics to create an image, authority and reach new recipients (communities focused around some blogs).

However, this text will focus on aspects tied to obtaining organic reach from free Google search results.

Visibility in Google is influenced by many things, but to simplify things there are two main groups of factors. First is content on the website that allows Google bots to understand the subject of the blog and match certain pages to quarries. The second factor are links leading to the website (the exception are links with a “nofollow” parameter, that don’t influence rankings in any way, according to Google official statement).

Content is important to increase the number of phrases our website comes up in the search results for. Links raise our position for competing phrases (those many people want to optimize for and good content alone is not enough).

How does it tie into guest blogging? Well, it’s a tactic that allows you to use content you create not to publish it on your website, but to publish it somewhere else and get a link from that website.

Is this a well-known practice?

Yes. Everywhere there are blogs you’ll find guest blogging. SEO agencies and companies that want to build their link profile use this technique eagerly.

Adding a guest article to someone else’s blog is a way to obtain a link in the content (when we for example say something about a different article we wrote) or under the article (depending on preferences and what both parties agree to).

It’s important to make sure it’s not a “nofollow” link. These kinds of links are potentially better than ones in comments or catalogues. That’s why guest blogging is a tactic you should give serious thought to when developing your positioning strategy (especially if you work in-house).

A lot depends on the brand or an expert in a given circle. It’s really easier to get links this way for people who are recognizable in some way.

Bloggers and publishers will publish a post like that more eagerly. It happens because his name is a guarantee for good content and may encourage some people to show the text to someone else (and people who publish our post want to gain new readers too). That’s why the stronger your personal brand the easier publishing guest posts will be.

That’s why it’s good to create professional profiles in social media (for example LinkedIn, Facebook) where we can show our previous publications, experience etc. It’s also good to have your own blog by then where you post important content from your area of expertise.

Be a PR specialist

To publish your posts on different blogs, you have to build relations and contacts in your market – especially with people who own well-known blogs. You can start with the less popular ones, or those that are only known in narrow fields but are connected to what you do.

Remember that on one hand you want to expose your brand and the blog subject needs to be close to what you do (otherwise people won’t read what you wrote and the owner won’t publish it) but on the other hand a link is a link. If people read the blog and it’s parameters are good (for example according to Semstorm), its visibility in social media is good and the link profile is perfect, you just want to have your website listed there.

Every time you have to think what will the value of your article be for the readers of the blog you publish on. Think about showing your knowledge in the context of a niche the blogger writes on every day. Assign the bloggers to different groups and send them e-mails. Or better yet, send them personal messages.

Is guest blogging an efficient positioning tactic?

Some people working in the positioning industry will tell you there are better and faster ways to do it. Of course there is an easier way to get links. However, using guest blogging allows you to obtain links that create traffic themselves.

A link profile becomes more differentiated and harder to copy by your competition. Furthermore, this kind of link profile can be more credible.

Remember that if you want to obtain links this way you can add an anchor-text link. For example: “… but that’s a subject I wrote about in a post >>10 ways to do something<<”. This way you can use a keyword in the link and that’s also an effective way to support positioning for these words.

Don’t make the “press note” mistake

It’s important to publish unique content, not copy and paste the same text in many places. An expert shouldn’t have a problem with writing a unique article every time. However, a person making their first steps in the world of guest blogging might struggle with that.

Guest blogging is not a technique that solves all the problems in connection to positioning. Start small, since at the beginning writing unique articles for many people at a time might be a problem.

But, at the end, it’s worth to note that guest blogging, as well as all other ways of active link obtaining (without the “nofollow” attribute) is in contradiction to Google guidelines.

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