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Guest Blogging, Matt Cutts and what it all means ?

Published by on January 26, 2014

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This week I have been inundated with messages from people informing me of Matt Cutts latest update regarding guest blogging as a practice of gaining backlinks.

“Okay, I’m calling it: if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop. Why? Because over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.”

Lets just take this in perspective and think about the scare mongering headlines we are seeing on many marketing blogs which are used to gain your attention.

Is Matt Cutts saying Guest Blogging has suddenly become a Illegal practice and anyone that does this for their site is going to get banned from Google and gain a massive penalty ? No he isnt. He goes on further to mention…

Matt Cutts continued by saying “For historical reference, I’ll list a few videos and links to trace the decline of guest articles. Even back in 2012, I tried to draw a distinction between high-quality guest posts vs. spammier guest blogs”

Poor sites that accept low quality content that isn’t perhaps uniquely written and is adding no real value to the end user. Matt Cutts is saying this is an end to poor quality guest blogging that are used just to pass on page rank to sites to boost them. The obvious examples of this are the following –

  • Sites linking to totally un relevant webpages nothing to do with their niche.
  • Overuse of keyword anchor text links on keywords
  • Not genuine unique content and with no real value

So if your SEO provider is doing genuine outreach lets take this as an example a Dentist looking to rank on the first page to be found within their county. The SEO company does research and builds up contacts within Dental and health Blog owners and provide them with some content that promotes “the benefits of flossing for children.” If that is published and it links back to the Dentists site via the name of the practice as the provider of the article their is nothing wrong with this practice it is perfectly normal and genuine. But however if I went to a Shopping or sports Blog and posted that same article and linked it back to the site with the anchor “Dentists Lancashire” It would be a completely different scenario.

Doing this probably wouldn’t give you a penalty but if you were doing 10 to 20 per month for 3 to 6 months the chances are you could. In our eyes this is the end of poor quality non genuine guest blogging. Combine a small number of genuine guest blogs with a content strategy on your site and you will see good improvements on your site. What is wrong with adding real genuine insights and information in your sector or industry ?

Matt Cutts continued by adding –

It seems like most people are getting the spirit of what I was trying to say, but I’ll add a bit more context. I’m not trying to throw the baby out with the bath water. There are still many good reasons to do some guest blogging (exposure, branding, increased reach, community, etc.). Those reasons existed way before Google and they’ll continue into the future. And there are absolutely some fantastic, high-quality guest bloggers out there. I changed the title of this post to make it more clear that I’m talking about guest blogging for search engine optimization (SEO) purposes.

I’m also not talking about multi-author blogs. High-quality multi-author blogs like Boing Boing have been around since the beginning of the web, and they can be compelling, wonderful, and useful.

I just want to highlight that a bunch of low-quality or spam sites have latched on to “guest blogging” as their link-building strategy, and we see a lot more spammy attempts to do guest blogging. Because of that, I’d recommend skepticism (or at least caution) when someone reaches out and offers you a guest blog article.”

Garry Pickles Garry Pickles (136 Posts)

Internet marketing consultant at Online Media. Adwords Professional, SEO consultant and digital coach.


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