Guest blogging used to be a fantastic way to gain valuable backlinks and boost your SEO. Google and other search engines gauge your site’s value by looking at some of the links which point to your site from other locations around the web. If those sites are of a high quality, and the link is organically placed (not spam), that gives you a nice little SEO boost and helps you to climb the rankings. So it made sense that guest blogging (whereby you write a blog post for a site within your sector, complete with link) would be a valuable tool in your bid to become more visible on search engines.
But as more marketers became aware of the guest blogging idea, they tried to take shortcuts. By creating spammy, low-quality content that was packed with keywords, they tried to game Google’s complex algorithms, resulting in the search engine getting even stricter on things like guest blogging.
So if guest blogging still a viable tool for SEO? Let’s take a look.
Guest blogging has evolved
The truth is that guest blogging isn’t dead – it’s simply evolved. It’s no longer seen as a tool to directly increase your SEO (it can have an indirect effect, but more on that later). It’s more of a tool to generate exposure for your brand as well as boosting your web traffic. There’s still plenty of value in the world of guest blogging – but the value isn’t rooted in SEO anymore.
The new world of guest blogging
As Google has tried to shift online searches and activity to more ‘organic’ realms, the focus of guest blogging has totally changed. It’s no longer simply about the once-valuable backlink – it’s about creating valuable, relevant content that you can share with a new audience by allowing another blog to post it. Google loves natural links and genuine guest posts, but it will penalise those who try to game the system by spamming or creating low-quality content that is crammed with keywords or links.
The indirect SEO benefits
Guest blogging has little to no direct SEO benefits nowadays – but it can positively impact your SEO somewhat indirectly. Any opportunity to mention your brand or get your business talked about on the internet is good for your SEO – it means there’s a higher chance of people hunting down your website based on what they’ve read, and they might just share that on social media or their own blog, helping your SEO.
As you gain more authority, you’ll start to be seen as a thought-leader, which can also help your business. You might be called upon to offer expert insight into something, with the ability to mention your brand and business once more. The indirect benefits of guest blogging for SEO are still there – but the key is not to make SEO the focus. Concentrate on creating quality, informative, relevant content that a new audience will benefit from, and think of the SEO boost as an added bonus.