Today we welcome another verified author on our blog Ross Hinton! Not only is he awesome enough to join our Google Authorship for guest blogging program, he is also awesome enough to preach what we believe in, i.e. high-quality guest blogging!
For a long time, the terms ‘SEO’ and ‘quality content’ didn’t really go together. Now, they couldn’t be more connected. SEO used to be a campaign built upon quantity. It was a tactic, rather than a strategy. It was a shortcut to success. Times have changed, however, and now quality is key.
Guest blogging is a great way to get your company or brand name out on a highly reputable site. Having a blog published on Moz.com is, for example, the holy grail for many a digital marketing company.
The tactics you employ are extremely important, however, especially now that Google has hinted it may be adjusting how it ranks websites that have built links through poor quality guest blogging tactics. But done right it is still a great strategy for boosting your brand and boosting your rankings. Here are some tips to help you reap the rewards from your guest blogging efforts:
Don’t focus on keywords
In the olden days (about 18 months ago), SEO content was all about keywords. People were cramming in as many as possible. Keyword, keyword, keyword. It didn’t make for pleasant reading, but then that’s not the point of SEO, right? Wrong.
Google’s algorithm tools have been developed to rate how useful a website is for its users. The constant developments are largely designed to make these tools more organic and to limit the amount of shortcuts. Especially when it comes to guest blogging, the most important thing is relevancy, uniqueness and, yes, quality. If you can get truly top quality content on a highly trusted and relevant blog, then that is all you need. Of course, you need a link in there somewhere, but this should only be through anchor text or keywords if it is natural. There is nothing wrong with simply linking in the author bio either, if the site permits it.
Sure, you need to consider your audience, but really you should be finding a writer, if you are not responsible for your own content, who is passionate and knowledgeable about the subject. This is certainly a lot easier with travel and sport, than, for example, condensing boilers, but a great writer will be passionate about the writing process itself and will still be able to produce quality, regardless of the subject.
Forging mutually beneficial, long term relationships is also crucial in this regard. Although you don’t need to be paying a writer as if they are a Pulitzer prize winner, showing appreciation and rewarding their commitment and increased quality is crucial. Consistency is a massively important part of any SEO strategy and if you keep chopping and changing writers, you simply won’t achieve this. The longer a writer works with you, the more they will understand your business and sector, and the more beneficial their content will be.
Make it interesting and informative
Especially when it comes to guest blogs, you need to consider what people want – blog owners and readers alike. This is from the title all the way through to the conclusion. If the subject you are writing about is slightly mundane, then find an innovative way of fitting it into a more interesting, or current, subject. Fancy dress, for example, could revolve around an upcoming event or festival, such as Christmas of Halloween. Likewise, try making financial articles relevant to the real life situations, such as saving for holidays, rather than bombarding people with accountancy speak and interest rates.
Two popular types of articles that provide relevance and usefulness are ‘How to…’ and ‘Top Ten…’ guides. Although they may seem a little generic, there is such vast variation in what you can write about, and, quite simply, they work. You still need to ensure that you are writing quality from a unique angle, but these are certainly simple yet effective foundations to build upon.
Tell people what they don’t already know
If you are a specialist in a particular sector, then use this expertise to inform people about a facet of the subject that they may have not already considered. Also, there is nothing wrong with expressing an opinion, this is interesting. If you have a theory or a new philosophy about something, then share it. As long as you are not insulting anybody, the contention in a blog will create more of a buzz. This, in turn, will increase its benefit to your business.
Remember, long term success in SEO can only ever be achieved with quality content. Anything less is simply no longer good enough.
By Ross Hinton
Latest posts by Ross Hinton (see all)
- A Guide To Writing Quality Guest Posts In A New Age Of SEO - August 23, 2013