The New Rules for Guest Blogging

welcome-signA couple weeks ago, with hardly any fanfare, Google quietly made some changes on the Webmaster Guidelines page about link schemes. Now considered a link scheme are “Large-scale marketing with articles or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor-text links.” There are hundreds, or else thousands, of marketing-minded sites available that explain the lasting SEO worth of guest blogging as a hyperlink building tactic, as a way to build your online authority, increase your organic search presence, increase touch points along with your target audience plus much more. But with this small switch to their Webmaster Guidelines, Google is different forever the way site owners and marketers will use guest blogging as being a way to build links. While all of those other benefits stay, failing to adapt to these new guidelines could land your site in very hot water.

In addition towards the Webmaster Guidelines changes, a newly released Webmaster Central Hangout has Google’s John Mueller proclaiming that it’s best practice to incorporate nofollow tags to your links in stories and guest blogs you are writing. As Barry Schwartz explains within the Search Engine Land article, in the event you wrote a guest post for a lot of site, no matter how authoritative it can be, you're the one who put that link in that room; therefore it’s not “natural.” Even if your primary goal of guest blogging would be to generate traffic and leads to your site, not just add a few extra links to your link profile, having that nofollow tag in position ensures Google doesn’t question your motives.

Let me point out that guest blogging is still an incredibly viable portion of your SEO program, but unfortunately, like any link building tactic that proves successful and then is spammed to death, those of us who were doing the work the right way have to pay the price of those spammers actions. If you have an excellent guest blogging opportunity within the wings, or perhaps a short list of repeat opportunities, you don’t want to throw those away because of these changes! However, in order to protect your long-term SEO successes here are some new rules for guest blogging:

1. Stick with branded anchortext in your author bio.

From the alterations Google got looks like keyword-rich anchor-text is out entirely. Depending on how many guest author bios you’ve got kicking around it might be worth editing those biographies to eliminate any keyword anchor-text (like “SEO company” or “backlink building services”) and stay with branded anchor-text (like “Brick Marketing”). You don’t want numerous author bios coming time for haunt you later on and many sites possess a CMS to change something and it automatically updates across all guest posts.

2. Add the rel=”author” tag for your author bios.

Google+ is Google’s personal social networking, and you will bet they aren’t letting that data go to waste. While we can’t say for sure that adding the rel=”author” tag for a guest blogging profiles may help that content rank much better organically, there is studies showing the rich snippet helps increase click-throughs. Adding that tag also helps to ensure that Google sees you since the original author in the event another site attempts to steal your site content.

3. If you link back in your own blog/site (even if it’s purely information) add the nofollow tag.

The nofollow tag can certainly still pass visitors along to your web site/blog, and adding that code lets Google realize that you aren’t blogging just for the links. The idea is usually to stay as transparent and over the board as you possibly can so Google doesn't have any reason to doubt your time and energy. Should another site’s editor quote/cite your posts on their own then it can be a follow link because that’s “natural,” but any guest post YOU write and YOU submit ought to include nofollow tags.

4. Be okay passing on some guest blogging opportunities.

Just because a site accepts guest websites that doesn’t mean you should automatically add that to your editorial calendar. There are plenty of general submission sites still kicking around that can take content from any and all sorts of comers, in case your site doesn’t operate inside your niche what’s the actual? The primary goal of your respective guest blogging efforts ought to be to connect using your target audience. If a site doesn’t reach to the heart of the audience then you’re just doing it for site, which can be what can ensure you get in trouble.

Guest blogging is still an incredibly important component of your overall SEO program, you just need to make sure you are abiding by the brand new rules!

About the Author

Nick Stamoulis could be the President of full service SEO firm Brick Marketing. With over 13 a lot of industry experience Nick Stamoulis shares his knowledge by writing within the Brick Marketing Blog and publishing the Brick Marketing SEO Newsletter.

Contact Nick Stamoulis at 781-999-1222 or

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