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The Decline Of Guest Blogging For SEO Purposes
Posted by Cameron Francis on February 10, 2014 in SEO

If you have been using guest blogging as a primary link building strategy you should proceed with caution. Google is starting to zero in on this practice. The reason that this practice has raised Google’s ire is because it has become an increasingly spammy practice over time.

In the not too distant past, guest blogging was a white-hat way to get links. Posting value-added content on respected sites in your niche with a do-follow link back to your own site. More recently, this practice has gotten out of control. Today, there are many marketers that are contacting webmasters offering to pay them for the right to post content on their sites. Quite often, these marketers will promise to provide high quality content that is appropriate to your niche and that is original. If you are a webmaster of an authority site it is likely that you get these types of solicitations on a frequent basis.

Some of them will even create content for you on a topic of your own choosing and wait until you approve the article prior to posting it. Of course, their primary goal is to get one or more do-follow links from your site. If you operate a site that is an authority site in your niche, you are likely to be a frequent target of these types of offers.

This tactic simply boils down to someone offering to pay a site owner for links that will pass Page Rank. Of course this is frowned upon by Google and it violates their quality guidelines. Google has noticed that increasingly they are witnessing guest bloggers who are merely paying for Page Rank or even inserting links that are not approved by unsuspecting webmasters.

Like many SEO tactics, a link-building methods starts out as a legitimate practice and ends up being abused until it is no longer a legitimate white-hat approach. At his point, guest blogging has declined to the point where people are selling guest-blogging services and creating ways to automate the process.

According to Matt Cutts of Google, guest blogging as a legitimate SEO technique is finished. It has become increasingly spammy. As a rule of thumb, it’s not a good idea to accept a guest post unless you are well acquainted with the poster. Similarly, it’s probably not a good idea to rely on guest blogging as your primary strategy for obtaining links. Read Detail Post on Guest Blogging by Matt Cutt.

Starting back two years ago, Cutts warned people about using low quality guest posts. Last year more warnings were issued.  By the middle of last year, many people were beginning to see the light and realise that guest blogging was becoming an over-used method on many low-quality sites. In fact, many people began no-following links that were in guest posts.

Given how spammy this practice has become it is very likely that Google will not look kindly on guest blogging in the future. 

Perhaps Guest Blogging Is Not Completely Finished

Even Matt Cutts admits that there are legitimate reasons to engage in a limited amount of guest blogging which may include improved branding, exposure, and reach. So, the point is, that there are reasons other than SEO to engage in guest blogging.

As a matter of fact if you are placing high quality guest posts on authority sites, guest blogging can still have value, even for SEO purposes. The problem is that many low-quality site owners have been using guest blogging as their primary link-building technique.

Due to these unfortunate circumstances, it would be advisable for you to be cautious when someone contacts you and offers to post guest blog content on your site.

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Cameron Francis

Co-Founder

Cameron Francis is the CoFounder & Managing Director of ETRAFFIC, Melbourne's #1 Creative & Digital Marketing Agency. For over a decade Cameron has been providing growth marketing and digital strategies for over 2,000 small businesses, start-ups & entrepreneurs around the country.
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