Although an older SEO tactic, guest posting still carries weight as an off-page optimization technique. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s exactly as it sounds – you write a guest post article for a webmaster on their site (usually a blog).
The recent popularity of content marketing – creating and sharing online material to stimulate interest in one’s service or product – means that webmasters are churning out articles and media at a faster rate than we’ve ever seen before.
Everyone knows Google loves updated fresh content on a site, but after a while webmasters run out of intellectual and creative steam.
As SEOs, we can take full advantage of this trend by contacting websites who are actively involved in publishing content. We can offer to write an article, make a video, design an infographic – the list goes on and on.
Of course we’re going to offer it for free. But, all we’ll ask for in return is to be able to include a contextual link (within the body of content) back to the page we’re trying to rank ourselves.
If they run a website whose success is predicated on how engaged it keeps an audience, then they’ll likely welcome any help they can get with content creation.
There is an element of outreach to this technique. We not only need to identify the sites we feel would be open to us creating content for them, but we also need to be able to contact them, and present an offer enticing enough for them to buy into the arrangement.
Like everything that works in SEO, this tactic has been taken advantage of in the past. There are unscrupulous vendors across the Internet who offer paid guest posting opportunities on websites that are all part of the same network. Essentially it’s just one big link farm in disguise!
As long as you’re resourceful and careful though, guest posting is still a great way of building links. My advice is to be very selective with the websites you approach. If the prospective website is worth it, generate a great piece of content for them and their audience.
An ancillary benefit of guest posting, apart from the SEO value for your site, is that you’ll likely get a lot of direct traffic from the post itself too.
A Quick Word on SEO Content Quality
Take it from me, the time and effort you need to invest in getting links to your site without
having good content to leverage, just isn’t worth it.
I remember years ago sitting in a New York SEO conference as the speaker rattled on about “content is king” and how everyone should focus on generating “great quality 10x content” relevant to their industry.
At the time, I thought it was a load of baloney and all I needed to actually do was concentrate on getting backlinks.
How wrong was I!
It pains me to dwell on how naïve I was. After years of resistance, my marketing agency decided to overhaul the entire service we offered our clients, making content creation the cornerstone of our SEO campaigns.
And the results? Well, they’ve been extremely remarkable!
From an SEO perspective, we’ve been able to build links to many of our blogs, increase page engagement and boost rankings for our clients to, faster and easier than we’ve ever done before.
Not only this, but the content itself has boosted conversion rates of our clients’ products and services directly.
One of my biggest tips here is to not fall into the trap of throwing up random articles for the sake of it. Adding to the tide of crap polluting the Internet is not helping anyone (including yourself).
So, before you begin to curate content, you should ask yourself:
• Who is this content for?
• What is the aim for the content?
• How do I make my content better than what currently exists on the web for this topic?
If you think about these 3 things before you start creating content, you’ll have infinitely more success in your SEO content marketing strategy and off-page SEO efforts in general.
In the Next Module
In the next module of this SEO tutorial we will look at how to use social media marketing for your website’s optimization.