Guest Blogging Soon To Be Considered As BlackHat SEO Strategy

Guest posting has proven to be very effective for many bloggers. It just flat out works because you get high quality links from authority domains, but since it works so well people are now abusing it.

After recent Google updates thousands of blog owners started their guest blogging crusade. There is nothing wrong with doing aggressive link building through guest posting if you are doing it yourself and constantly pump out top notch content, but if you are outsourcing every piece and submit  low quality 500-word articles then things start to look bad.

Here is how I understand how guest posting should work:

1. Identify relevant blogs that you would like to submit content to – Hand pick good quality sites that are relevant to what you blog about. This should be a process that you do yourself manually.

Nowadays though people scrape url lists and blast out emails asking if they can submit a post. That’s not how it should be done.

2. Research the blog and come up with a good topic to write about – Spend 30 minutes or so researching the blog you want to publish your piece on. Find out what they didn’t covered yet and then start writing something that provides value.

3. Send your piece to the blog owner for review – When asking someone to publish your guest post it’s a good idea to include the piece with the initial email. Tell them that you have done some research and discovered a topic that hasn’t been covered yet on their blog. Let the blogger know you have already written a great piece for him and that it’s attached with the email.

If you do it this way it makes you look so much better and the chance of your post getting published is much higher.

Sending an email asking if you can submit a post without the actual post already written won’t work for the most part. I don’t even respond anymore to people that do that.

If the blogger rejects your post then at least you know you can now approach someone else or publish it on your own blog.

The Alarming Trend

Just a few months ago I would receive maybe 1 email every 2 weeks or so from freelancers asking if they can submit a post for their client. I didn’t pay much attention to it and never responded to their emails anyway, but last month I have noticed a huge spike in spam from these people.

I am now getting 1-2 emails every other day asking if they can submit a post in exchange for a link back. It’s really annoying and I think I am going to start marking them as spam from now on.

Here are couple of examples from yesterday:

Are you currently accepting guest posts on website ?
My name is ******* and I am a freelance writer to help them reach new audiences online by developing content partnerships with good quality blogs and websites like yours.
I would like to stress that the article itself will not be self-promotional – I strive to ensure each piece I write is unique, written exclusively for your website and offers value to your audience.
If you are happy for me to do so, then I will include a reference to my client in the byline so that your readers can find out more if they wish.
Does this sound like something you would be interested in?
I look forwards to hearing from you.
All the best,

And here is another

I was just going through few sites and blogs yesterday and came across your site too. I really liked the way you have presented your site. I was reading some of your content and really found them interesting and informative. So I was just wondering if I can also do something for your site.
Actually I am a freelance content writer and I love writing articles as a hobby on topics related to Personal Finance,Savings Budget.What if I provide you with an unique article as a Guest Post absolutely FREE!! An article that will be informative for your readers. The article will be related to your website and will be appreciated by your readers.
It would be great if you can add a small BIO of mine at the end of the article with my related site’s links. I guarantee you that the article will be 100% copyscape protected and will be of around 500 words.
Please let me know if this sound good to you, so that we can start working on your article.

Best Regards,

These SEO companies offering Guest Posting as service will ruin it for everyone soon.  I mean who would want a 500-word post from some freelancer who doesn’t know anything about the business?

I have actually responded to one of them and said,“Tell your client to email me personally and make sure they include the post they want to publish with the email”…never heard back from them.

This strategy won’t get you the quality links you need. It’s no different than submitting articles to article directories in my opinion.

Since when guest posting became automated?

If you are too lazy to contact the blog owner yourself then you probably are not able to produce anything worth publishing either.

Do you think that, for example, JohnChow would publish my stuff if he received an email from a freelancer on my behalf? I doubt it.

Anyway, I think you can still outsource the writing part if you have a top notch writer who is an expert in your niche, but you can’t fully automate it.

I would still come up with the topic to write about myself. Then send detailed instructions to the writer telling him or her what I want to include in the post, and how I want it structured.

When it’s done I would take the time to read it and add my own personality to it. Sometimes it’s easier to edit a long article than writing everything from scratch.

But honestly I would never hire some SEO company to go around asking bloggers to publish crap with my name on it. It makes you look bad!

If this trend continues guest posting soon might be considered as blackhat SEO strategy and it will lose its effectiveness.

It’s really not that hard to find good blogs to write for. If you contact them personally and include the piece with the initial email you will be taken much more seriously than trying to automate it through some SEO service. It will also produce much better results that way.


10 thoughts on “Guest Blogging Soon To Be Considered As BlackHat SEO Strategy

  1. If you are just using a service for guest posting, then you are most likely picking up links at a much higher rate than usual. I’m not totally sure of how BMR was tracked, but I do know what I would have done to trace the origin of the backlinks and identify the network sites.

  2. Hi Pawel, interestingly I have noticed an increase this week of guest post requests from people offering me free content in exchange for links… today I received an email with this…

  3. I have notice a big increase in guest post requests lately (even paid ones). I only accept these types of requests on one of my blogs as I’m testing a strategy. On my other blogs I don’t accept guest posts unless I can visit the persons blog and see how “real” they are.

  4. I don’t think there is such a thing as “paid guest post”. It’s no longer a guest post, it’s an advertorial. I don’t reply to those at all either (not for this blog at least. I do accept advertorials on my other sites but without any SEO benefits). It’s usually an SEO company that wants a dofollow link back with anchor text “seo company” lol

  5. Hi Pawel, I just thought I should weigh on this from a different angle since i’m an independent freelance content writer and also a blogger myself. I’ve experienced this, though from a different perspective.Lately i’ve been getting quite a lot of requests from some seo companies to do guest posts for them.The problem with most of them is that they’re always looking for quantity rather than adding value to the host blog. One of them proposed i do around twenty average articles and blast them to some blogs they had scraped around. Although their proposed pay was good, i still find this totally against the unwritten rules and ethics of business. I wouldn’t wish to put my reputation at risk or damage the hardwork done by a fellow blogger.

  6. Hey Pawel, you are one of the few marketers I still haven’t unsubscribed yet, (considering that I do not tolerate anyone on my email more than few days specially if they do not provide value or at least something interesting that is worthwhile my valuable time reading). You provide real value, and interesting enough to stop by and read. Pretty good man, keep up. 🙂

  7. Even if guest posting does become regarded as black hat how on earth are google going to flag up sites that use this method? Since the blog owner has full control over what is published on their site and can check for dupes around the web, subsequently rejecting sub-standard content, I simply cannot see how this strategy can be detected as ranking manipulation.

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