Is Guest Blogging a Good Idea?

Speaker – Matt Cutts, Head of Google’s Webspam team

Transcription – Nu Studio’s SEO team

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Today’s question comes from San Francisco. The question is: “What is Google’s view on guest blogging for links?” This is another one of those questions where there are a couple ways to interpret it. One is really high-quality guest blogging and whether that is worthwhile; and I think it is in some cases. The other one is what if it goes to extremes? What if you take it too far? Let us start with the easy case.

If you are a high-quality writer, you give a shout-out to Alisa Barone or something like that. She is at a conference. She is blogging, and maybe she wants to do a guest blog on some other blog, that blog should be happy to have her. Vanessa Fox, Danny Sullivan, these people who write something on a different blog, generally, you should be happy to have them write an article for you, because they are bringing a lot of insight and knowledge to that. That can be totally fine. It can be a good win for the person who hosts that and who has that guest blogger come in. It can be a great way for maybe someone who is not quite as well-known but writes really well to get to be known a little bit better. That is the short and simple answer. The longer answer is, sometimes it gets taken to extremes. You will see people writing, offering the same blog posts multiple times, or spinning the blog post and offering it to multiple outlets. It almost becomes a low-quality article bank; ‘I am going to send you 5 ‘unique’ blog posts.’

You definitely do see a lot of people where it is like, ‘I am going to write this blog post. Actually, I am going to outsource that to somebody else who is not an expert, and then I am just going to insert my hyperlinks that I would like to get into your blog post.’ It is a long and time-honored tradition to have high-quality bloggers jump back and forth or collaborate in different ways. Just be mindful that it can absolutely be taken to extremes. In the same way that some practices which make a lot of sense, when you think about it, with high-quality people. When you are just doing it as a way to turn the crank and get a massive number of links, that is something where we are less likely to want to count those links. I hope that clarifies a little bit.

There is definitely a case for the things where you really think hard about what you want to say. You have a message, you sweat over it, and you have some perspective that you really want to get out there. Then there is some where it is just 300 words, and it is the bare minimum to get by. For better or for worse, I think in the SEO space, there is a lot of that 200, 300, or 400 words, which is the bare minimum this blog post has to get by. Whereas, the links that we would like to be counting more would be the higher-quality articles, where somebody really put some work into it, and they have something really original to say.

Anyway, I hope that gives you a little bit of feel for the space and which guest blogs might be a little more higher value, and which ones might not be as worth the time for you to do.