Guest Blogging: The Proper Way in 2013 and Beyond

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Most of us already know what guest blogging is and how it can help your website succeed. But for those who don’t know yet, guest blogging is a method of contributing content to other websites related to yours with a link to your website provided in return.

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Most websites have already attempted guest blogging campaign to increase the flow of incoming links and juice to their website, but do you really think that guest blogging is the best solution to give you the best results?

A blog post on Moz about the sleepwalking way to penalize guest bloggers who unnaturally and unethically post on a large scale caused website owners to completely rethink guest blogging. Since the links in guest contributed article aren’t always natural, it is easier to manipulate what URL and anchor text will appear in author bio of your article , which can be where guest blogging becomes manipulative.

Here’s Google’s view on Guest blogging for links.

Contributing articles to another website is actually good way to increase your connections and online presence. However, doing this just only for the sake of link is a terrible idea. Instead of an author’s bio, include your link in the content so you are able to use different  anchor text or embed your images and videos in content of your post with links back to your website.

Dos and Don’ts in Guest Blogging


  • Make sure all the websites you guest blog on are highly relevant to your website – Keep your website links coming from niche-related websites to avoid being penalized by search engines for manipulating links.
  • Become a regular contributor to the websites you guest blog on – You need to be regularly seen on the websites where your content is published to keep readers engaged and to establish a strong online presence.
  • Use long string anchor text as often as possible – Many guest blogs that I have seen are using keyword based anchor text (short tail and long tail) with both exact match and partial match. Which is quite alarming since Google sees websites with exact match keyword link profile as manipulating their SERP. So avoid using exact match anchor text to keep your site safe from dangers associated with exact match.


  • Guest blog all over – Just like over optimization of anchor text and link profile, having lots of signals coming from different websites even related to yours might cause you problem in the future. Especially if you managed to publish 100 guest blogs in a short period of time, and you used exact match keyword.
  • Buy links – This has never been a good idea, especially if these paid links are passing link juice. Link buying to build links is a big no-no and will only penalize your website. Just don’t do it.
  • Author bio links – Links in bio sections have become very manipulative including being used for exact match anchor text linking to a webpage/website. Although we want to rank for the keyword, it is still not a good idea to use keyword anchor text.

Although guest blogging is still working well for some websites, it is still too early to tell if it will continue to work. Filling your own site with fresh, updated content on a regular basis is still the best way to keep your audience engaged and build your rank.

Do you guest blog? How do you think guest blogging practices will change in the next few years? Do you think guest blogging is risk free?

Joseph Cruz
Joseph Gojo Cruz is the author of RankingElite, co founder and head of operations at SharpRocket. Joseph has been working in online marketing industry for over 3 years from website audit, link and content development, social media and search engine optimization. Connect with Joseph on Google+, Twitter, and Facebook. Joseph is also a contributor on Ahrefs.
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  • Phillip Mullennax

    Great post. I like the keep it simple keep it clean mentality.

  • James Brockbank

    I strongly agree with you on this Joseph…guest blogging is still a fantastic way to build your brand online and is still an essential part of content marketing. Of course, what you need to look at is the reason why you’re guest blogging. If you’re guest blogging just for the sake of a link…forget it! The primary reason behind guest blogging should always be to demonstrate your expertise and reach new audiences with your content!

  • Reshu

    Agreed! Guest blogging is one of the most effective tactic to build your online presence, but only if you
    follow the do’s and don’ts before implementing it for your business.

    My two cents: 1) Write good quality content that your target audience find useful and informative and can
    help you in establishing yourself as an expert in your targeted niche. Matt Cutts recently pointed out that good
    guest blogging is when the content is written by an expert with very little focus on keyword stuffing for link purposes.

    TIP: Don’t promote yourself or your product/service, but educate your targeted audience & help them in
    making an informed decision.

    2) Also, guest blogging should be done in moderation rather than as a tactic to build links using keyword rich anchor text excessively. Use it to build your image.

    Have shared my thoughts on guest blogging here: – would love to get your feedback.

  • Alia Qaim

    Yes it is really a good article about guest blogging, but my question is, is it good for a new blogger who have new blog to do guest blogging. What is your suggestion for a newbie blogger regarding guest blogging.?

    • Dominique

      It’s always a good idea to guest blog, even if your site is relatively new. This article mainly talked about the SEO benefits of guest blogging, but you also get exposure and referral traffic to your site as well, which is sometimes more valuable than a couple of backlinks.

      That’s why it’s important to try to guest blog for sites that already have a strong following and decent traffic rather than just trying to get articles published on any blog that will accept them. Sites that accept pretty much any guest post are typically link farms, with a ton of outbound links with exact match anchor text, which is exactly what Google doesn’t want you to do.

      So long story short, it’s never too early to start guest blogging ūüôā

  • Quantum PC Support

    Thank you for reminding guest blog benefit. But it can be a boomerang if you don’t post a relevant and useful one. Many blog owner post unrelated blog post and gave link to the guest. It is sometimes impacts negatively on google. So be more careful in guest posting. I suggest taking personal review from few experts in your field before posting the content.

  • Mike

    I also agree with the Joseph Cruz Dos and Don’ts related to the guest blogging. It is good to avoid buying links instead do the real blogger outreach on related blogs. For increasing search engine ranking, Guest blogging is one of the best ways to attract potential users. I also like your point in which you advised to avoid bulk of links coming from same website through guest blogging, as this may create problems for your blog. And the most important point i liked in your post is building relations with guest bloggers for quality link exchange. Once again good job Joesph, keep it up!