The release of Google’s latest major algorithm update, Penguin 2.0, has ruffled the feathers of many professional bloggers and SEO experts. Cries have gone up across the Internet complaining of Google’s alleged attack on guest blogging.
Guest blogging has such a successful method for increasing search engine rankings and blog traffic, it’s become a staple of proper SEO and content marketing practices.
It bears the question, how could Google take away the primary tool of every good Whitehat SEO professional?
The truth is Penguin 2.0 has done nothing to reduce the effectiveness of guest blogging.
Guest blogging is as powerful a tool today as it was six months, a year or even two years ago. What has come under fire by Penguin 2.0 are guest blogging spammers who’ve either forgotten or never cared what it means to be a guest.
Putting the GUEST back into guest blogging
Over the years the obvious benefits of guest blogging have attracted spammers in droves looking to build as many backlinks as possible from whatever website they could get on. If you’ve owned a blog for more than 24 hours then you’ve probably received one of those template emails from spammy guest bloggers looking to place shallow content on your website that points back to their own.
The whole purpose of guest blogging is to add value to a the host blog community you’re contributing to. When given an invitation to create content for another website, it is our obligation to be respectful of the opportunity.
The invitation is given, because the host blog owner is looking to add your unique value and voice to their own audience. You are a guest in their community. The primary goal of your guest blogging contribution should NOT be focused on the value you will receive, but rather delivering so much value to this new audience they can’t help but want more.
Here are 5 methods for putting the guest back into guest blogging:
#1 Reference the Blog Owner and their Achievements.
Nothing makes the host blog owner feel better about asking you to contribute to their website then referencing their achievements in your content. If you’re writing for a website with Search Engine Journal mention that it was ranking #13 by the AdAge Power 150 Marketing Blogs… an amazing achievement.
#2 Internal Linking to Host Blog Content.
Find articles on the host blog that support your guest post content and link to them in your own article. This shows that you’ve done your homework and research on the host website, you value the content and are willing to link out to it.
#3 Google Authorship PageRank.
According to research done at Mark Traphagen, Google Plus profiles have a PageRank. Through the authorship attribution Google Plus profile PageRank is being passed along to blog content which contains the authorship markup. this means growing your Google Plus profile PageRank and applying the authorship markup to guest posts is adding back link value to your host website.
#4 Unique and Relevant Content.
According to Neil Patel from Quick Sprout, content relevancy will play a huge factor in guest blogging SEO after the Penguin 2.0 update. The most condemnable offense of guest blogging spammers is the use of duplicate content that is not relevant to the host website. Reusing old content as guest posts is not a quality strategy for guest blogging and can have a negative impact to both your own and the host blog SEO. Additionally, and this is more of a concern since Penguin 2.0, guest blog posts must contain relevant information to the host website. Meaning a host website about marketing should not contain guest blog posts about DIY home repair.
#5 Reference Host Blog Owner Products.
Not everyone may be comfortable with this strategy, but if possible, I like to reference the products or services of the host blog owner. If my content can help the host blog owner sell a couple extra products than my contribution is that much valuable and it’s more likely I’ll be asked to return.
Are you a guest blogger worth having back?
Just like being a good dinner guest, your goal is to provide so much of value to your hosts blog they can’t wait to have you back. But for this to happen your guest blog post must be created with good intentions. Yes, guest blogging done correctly can have a significant positive impact on your own search engine optimization and traffic stats, but there is a right and wrong way to go about it.
By following the simple methods above you will become a sought after guest blogger and will never have to worry about a future Google algorithm update impacting the guest blogging work you’ve previously done.
Thank you and Good luck,
Subscribe to SEJ
Get our weekly newsletter from SEJ's Founder Loren Baker about the latest news in the industry!