Guest posts are a popular way many SEOs build ‘valuable’ links to their website. But this strategy may not be as valuable as you think.
Since Google is such a logical monster, those links you’re building might not be as valuable as you think for the following reasons:
- Expertise vs. True Relevance – those links prove that you have thought leadership in your realm of expertise, but they do not prove that your website is relevant for certain search terms and deserves to rank higher in the SERPs because the links aren’t always from a strict editorial about you or a highly relevant mention
- Website Semantic Irrelevance – the guest posts are not always on domains that are relevant to what your website is all about (i.e. im posting on an SEO website, when my company makes custom men’s dress shirts)
- Page Semantic Irrelevance – the keywords within the guest post are not always optimized for keywords you want to rank on, so that random backlink with optimized anchor text isn’t as powerful as it can be
- It’s a Cheap Tactic – with good copy, and decent knowledge of a certain space, it’s not hard to guest post anywhere. Google may see this as a cheap tactic because of how easy it is for an SEO to guest post on a high-PR blog without that post being an unbiased editorial or mention of your company
- Duplicate Content Complications – the byline with your self-serving links might be seen as ‘duplicate content’ (if you copy and paste your signatures for guest posts) that was plugged into all these other websites, therefore devaluing the links’ power. But this can be easily resolved by creating a unique byline each time which takes little to no effort.
Now, I’m not saying that backlinks through guest posting are worthless. In fact, I love using guest posting as an SEO tactic. I’m even doing it for this post. But I just wanted generate a conversation about SEO weight for guest post backlinks. Not all links are equal, and guest post backlinks aren’t always going to hold a lot of weight.
Any thoughts on this? I’m up for a good dialogue.
P.S. I admit that the backlinks to my websites are semantically irrelevant, but I still use this as part of my link building strategy because Google will definitely let me have some link-juice.