Guest blogging is a guest post strategy, i.e. articles written for other sites, which help you grow your blog. Here's how.
If you have recently started a blog, you will surely have noticed how difficult it is to generate consistent traffic.
This is because we are in a very, very competitive time and to be able to make good numbers and make money with a blog, it is necessary to create a solid and scalable strategy in the long term.
It is no longer enough, in fact, to create some small article on a blog and wait for people to find us, as it happened about ten years ago.
And it's just guest blogging that I want to talk to you today.
We will see together what guest posting means, how guest blogging works and what its benefits are, how to write an effective guest post and how this technique can increase your visibility, your authority and your blog traffic.
What is a guest post?
A guest post is a piece of content that we write for someone else's blog within our niche, often in exchange for a backlink (a link towards our site) and some degree of public promotion (often you get an author bio as well).
Often one of the biggest mistakes we make with guest posts is believing that we get more referral traffic. My research on guest posting has demonstrated this is not the case.
Writing a guest post to get referral traffic is one of the biggest lies we have been told in marketing.
I wrote in 2019 three guest articles for SearchEngineLand.com and looks at my traffic numbers:
I wrote for SEMRush.com and look at the traffic I got from them:
That said, guest blogging has still lots of benefits, however, they are often non-trackable and not tangible. It helps you build new and stable relationships with bloggers, get your name out there.
The entire strategy of planning, writing, publishing and monitoring guest posts is called guest blogging.
⚠️ If you have yet to start a blog, you can start with Bluehost for $3,95 per month (with a 54% discount)
How does guest blogging work
Although someone has warned us about the negative effects of guest posting for links (and by someone I mean John Mueller in 2020), in reality, this practice is not only still alive and well but also brings excellent results from an SEO perspective.
Someone on Twitter speculated as to whether penalties were coming.
John Mueller tweeted that there was nothing different on the way:
“….there are new people starting on SEO all the time (yay!), but it’s all years old in the meantime & nothing has changed there at all. Unless this storm in a teacup triggers a lot of people to start, I don’t see a need for the webspam team to jump in.”
The important thing, however, is to create a guest blogging strategy in a structured way and not as a mere exchange of links because this could really penalize you - or even make you disappear from Google's search results.
So what does guest blogging mean in a practical sense?
Guest blogging is divided into 5 main steps:
Search for sites
Contact with bloggers
Writing the article
The publication of the article
Monitoring of results.
Let's look at all these points in more detail.
Increase your authority
An authoritative blog definitely has a trustworthy audience. My readers trust what I write. If I let you write a guest post on my blog, I'm telling my audience that they can trust you and your content.
This helps to expand your personal branding, increase your authority and increase your visibility to a new audience.
Another advantage of guest blogging is to get backlinks, i.e. links pointing to your website. Even if you don't get referral traffic, you can still increase your links profile.
A backlink is also important in terms of SEO since being mentioned on another blog, especially if more authoritative than ours, also helps to increase Google's trust.
When you write a guest post, therefore, you can ask them to add a link or two to your blog, perhaps an in-depth article. Usually, the links are inserted within the article or in the author box at the end of the content.
Establish new relationships with bloggers
I'm honest: SEO ok, traffic ok, but the biggest advantage of guest blogging is the relationships you create with other bloggers.
The best collaborations I have had in my life since working in the digital marketing field started with guest posts.
The secret lies in bringing true value to your hosts and their audience, making yourself seen proactive and enthusiastic about creating a relationship even before you want to see your content published.
Very often, if you have written exceptional content, bloggers may ask you to write regularly for them, becoming a full-fledged web writer, or they may propose new projects, introduce you to other colleagues and who knows what comes from it!
Building a good Domain Authority
As explained by Spider-Link:
the Domain Authority is a metric created by MOZ that measures the success of a website, expressing it with a value between 0 and 100.
This score is calculated by measuring multiple parameters, such as the number and quality of domains linking to your site, how long the domain has been active, social signals and other factors.
If you are creating valuable guest posts and building great relationships with other websites, guest blogging helps to greatly increase your Domain Authority.
How to choose the sites for your guest posting
It goes without saying that guest blogging in a structured and strategic way doesn't mean randomly contacting all the bloggers until someone says yes.
That's not quite how it works.
First, therefore, we need to do a targeted search for websites that we can contact and offer them our contribution to their blog. And what features should these websites have?
They must have a blog
They have to target our own niche
They must have a domain authority (DA) as high as possible - or in any case higher than ours.
We will return to this point shortly, which probably needs a little more detailed explanation.
First, create a table in Excel or use the one I have already prepared for you and that you can find here. Then just click on File> Create a copy and you can use the template for your projects.
Now we just have to look for the right sites. Here's how to find the first ones.
Go to SEMRush and create a free account. Don't let the 7-day trial scare you - it just means you can activate the full version for free for a week but you can actually use the limited version for as long as you want, and that's more than enough for now.
(⚠️ I explained everything in detail in my Semrush guide)
Once you have created the account, go to the left menu and click on Domain Analysis> Overview. Now enter the address of your website, select your country and click Search.