Making The Case For Guest Blogging
After Panda and particularly Penguin, legitimate, Google-friendly link building really got narrowed. Blog networks got blown up, low-quality directory and comment links got completely de-valued, etc. This was rather expected, but word of infographics and even guest blogging getting suggested as being less than ideal link building? That came as a bit of a surprise.
But it’s good marketing, right?
Forget about search engines for a minute. Guest blogging (whether it involves you blogging on someone else’s blog, or letting someone blog on yours) is good marketing. If you’re guest blogging somewhere, you get to present your knowledge or product or service, or whatever, to another audience. You (hopefully) get their feedback via comments. You should also get a solid, relevant link back to your website that can obviously drive interest, traffic, and perhaps new customers. Even letting someone blog on your site is smart, because that person or company is going to promote that post via their audience, giving your site social shares and mentions, more awareness, traffic, and links. What’s not to like?
So, what should you do?
The issue here is that like most forms of link building, guest blogging has been abused, and can be seen as a version of buying links. There are entire networks and platforms for buying and selling guest blogging opportunities, so Google may be deciding that guest blogging isn’t quite what it once was (or should be). Rand Fishkin’s blog post has a good discussion going in the comments about guest blogging and link building in general. It’s worth a look to follow-up from this post.
For my money, if you are smart about…
- The websites you’re trying to post on
- The content you’re going to share there
- The people or companies you let onto your site
- The content they’re going to provide on your site
… then I think you should be fine. For the reasons mentioned above, guest blogging is just smart marketing (when done right). Don’t over-optimize your anchor text links, don’t over-promote; make sure the content is a relevant, value-add to the audience (theirs or yours), and/or provide expert advice or insight.