In past years, you have probably heard that guest blog posts were a great idea for online marketing and link-building – and the evidence made sense. Guest blogging would get you exposure to new audiences, get your website high-quality inbound links, and build your authority in your field. Inviting guest bloggers to post entries on your website could also help you gain more readership, and could even be monetized in some cases.
However, the guest blogging party might be over – or at the very least it has significantly changed. A few months ago, Google executive Matt Cutts stated on his blog that the era of guest blogging for improved SEO will soon be over. In the near future, Google will be on the lookout for sites that engage in too much guest blogging and violators would be punished accordingly.
Why have guest blogging efforts largely gone from good to bad? In Matt Cutt’s words: “over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company. Back in the day, guest blogging used to be a respectable thing, much like getting a coveted, respected author to write the introduction of your book. It’s not that way any more.”
However, it’s important to understand that not all guest blogging is automatically terrible, and in some cases, it could still be a great idea. Below, read about some circumstances in which you should and shouldn’t guest blog:
You probably shouldn’t guest blog if:
- You are asked to pay to blog (or if you are asking people to pay to blog).
- You are guest blogging on a site filled with other guest bloggers.
- You are guest blogging ONLY for SEO and linking purposes.
- Someone you don’t know is asking to blog on your website.
- You are blogging on a website that isn’t related to your field.
- Your guest blogs aren’t relevant, unique, and well written.
You can probably guest blog safely and confidently if:
- You are guest blogging on a well known and well respected website.
- You know the person who is guest blogging personally.
- You don’t guest blog often.
- You aren’t guest blogging expressly to get inbound links.
- Your guest blogging doesn’t involve an exchange of money.
- Your guest blogging efforts are helpful to your readers.
- Your guest blogging helps establish your authority.
Like so many other aspects of SEO, we encourage you to make guest blogging choices that are smart, organic, and ultimately for your readers, not the search engines. The problem with gaming the Google system is that the Google system is always evolving. If you try to make short cuts, your efforts might be all for nothing in the end.
Want to learn more about smart SEO for attorneys? Call the Search Ninjas today for a free SEO audit: (410) 929-5610.