Guest Blogging: Linking Strategy 2016
There are many reasons that a marketer might consider including guest posting as part of their digital marketing strategy, but quite often it is to strengthen the authority of their website. In light of the numerous vague references to follow and no-follow links and their uses published by Google, many bloggers and influencers are understandably over cautious when it comes to linking, so it’s worth performing a brief back link analysis to determine whether or not they allow follow links (links that allow authority to be passed from one domain to another) on their blog.
To do this follow these steps below:
Find an external link, right click on it, and then click inspect element.
The highlighted section is the HTML code for the link. Check for a rel=“nofollow” tag in the link’s code. If there isn’t one, then the link will pass authority.
Alternatively, services such as Moz’s Open Site Explorer can perform a similar function that analyses a site’s full link profile, and shows if they pass authority or not.
This is not to say that rel=“nofollow” links don’t serve a purpose. When used correctly they can provide your business with a great source of traffic. But in terms of developing your site’s page rank, it’s recommended that you look for relevant domains that allow authority to be passed through their links.
Do they offer paid posts?
A site openly offering links in return for money is a sure signal to Google that the site is in breach of their terms and conditions. If Google does penalize a site for selling links, then there is a good chance that any sites that are deemed to have paid for links on this domain could also be penalized.
Matt Cutts has previously spoken on the subject stating:
“Clear disclosure of sponsorship is critical, and that includes disclosure for search engines. If a link in a paid post would affect search engines, that link should not pass PageRank (e.g. by using the nofollow attribute). Google — and other search engines — do take action which can include demoting sites that sell links that pass PageRank, for example.”
So there are instances where paying for links is acceptable, however the relationship between the domains requires full disclosure and the use of a rel=“nofollow” tag.
A website will usually indicate in their guest post guidelines whether or not they accept payment for links. But, if this is the case, it’s recommended that you look for a link elsewhere.
What is the authority of the site?
Domain authority is another factor that you need to take into consideration when deciding who to contact. Sites with lower authority may be easier to contact and more relaxed about the content they accept, but these links, at best, won’t make a huge amount of difference to your site’s authority, and at worst could actually be counter productive.
Moz is one of the most common tools used to measure DA. Much like Klout score for social authority, Moz does a reasonably accurate job at determining the authority of a domain by frequently crawling the web, in a similar fashion to Google. Obviously, Moz’s resources are more limited when compared to Google’s, so this domain authority figure can only function as a guideline.
To quickly find the authority of a domain, all you have to do is install Moz’s toolbar.
If the site doesn’t rank towards the top of SERPs (search engine result pages) for their own brand name, it may be an indication that Google has penalized the site at some point. This means that working with this site will not provide any benefit, and could even negatively impact your own domain.
If a brand appears within the top rankings for its social media profiles as well as its website, then this is a good indication that the site is influential and can offer good quality links.
How strict are their guest post guidelines?
Another potential indicator that a website may be lacking in good quality content is the absence of guest posting guidelines. If this is the case, then there is chance that the overall quality of the site may also be compromised, meaning any links that they provide will do little in the way of benefitting your own domain.
Outreach is always easier when a website accepts guest post contributions with open arms, however there are benefits of having strict gate keeping in place. Not only can this guarantee a higher quality of content, but also indicate a good quality website, and therefore, a good quality link.
When executed properly, guest posting can be a powerful weapon in a digital marketer’s arsenal, but it’s important to remember that it’s not a numbers game. Placing a lot of links may make for impressive stats at your next marketing meeting, but it will have little effect in terms of increasing your website’s page rank. Remember, the number one rule for guest posting is always quality over quantity.
What Can You Learn From a Noteworthy Content Marketing Blog?
Every marketer likes to think that he or she has the perfect content marketing blog. However, there are hundreds of these types of blogs across the Internet, and they all claim to provide helpful information. As a small business owner, you might find it downright overwhelming.
That being said, you could already be asking yourself, “Is it worth reading a content marketing blog?” You need to use your time wisely as an entrepreneur, and fitting blog reading into your schedule can help.
Finding Additional Insight
One of the largest benefits of subscribing to a content marketing blog is that you’ll gain insight into how you can improve your own marketing strategy. A valuable, resourceful blog will likely have regular updates on how the world of inbound marketing is changing. Keeping up with these trends can help you ensure that you’re using the most optimal tools to drive leads.
Becoming a Pro
Unless you’ve been working in marketing for an extended period of time, you may not be familiar with the benefits of content, such as white papers and e-books. As you look to expand your content offerings, blogs will become more helpful to you. An informative content marketing blog should be able to get you up to speed on inbound marketing tactics that connect with your audience.
Enhancing Your Own Blog
Eventually, you may want to begin your own blog for your small business. As you look for inspiration, a content marketing blog may be a good place to start. Established blogs can give you an idea of the structure and strategy you can use on your own site. You can examine the layout and pick out features you want to add to enhance your blog.
As you continue to discover the advantages of content marketing blogs, reach out to the authors of these publications for additional information. The marketing professionals who run these pages are some of the most knowledgeable resources you have as an entrepreneur. In many cases, you may even discover that a content marketing firm is the perfect resource as you look to outsource tasks such as blogging and social networking.