VerticalResponse Blog

It wasn’t too long ago, (a year or so) that nearly everyone working in the field of search engine optimization (SEO) would suggest using “high quality” guest blogging as part of a link building strategy. Well, in January of this year, Matt Cutts, Head of Webspam at Google, put a dagger in the heart of guest bloggers, calling it, “the decay and fall of guest blogging for SEO.

In March, Google took action against several guest blogging sites in the form of a manual penalty. In June at SMX Advanced, Cutts said again, “some people still don’t get it [that guest blogging is dead] and we [Google] are willing to take action against that.” So if you didn’t see the clear writing on the wall back in January, and missed the huge penalties in March, listen to us now: Stop guest blogging. You could put your site(s) at risk of receiving a manual from Google. So what do you do instead? Here are some great ideas:

1. Write awesome content for your own blog

Why would you spend blood, sweat and tears writing content for someone else’s blog, just for one little link back? Seems kinda silly now that we look back on it. Spend that time writing some booty kicking content for your own site! Once you post it, don’t just let it sit there. Share your post on social media and get creative. If you have an awesome image in the post, try pinning it on Pinterest, while also repining similar content. You might get some repins for your own post.

2. Create videos

Before you start thinking that video creation is going to cost you some serious coin, check our post here (hint: you can get started for a few hundred bucks.) If you feel the content on your blog has been a bit stale, try mixing in some video to engage your audience with a different medium. Don’t forget that YouTube is the second biggest search engine, so if you aren’t sharing your videos there, you could missing out!

Some quick tips: make the videos short and sweet, around 2-4 minutes with some actionable take-aways. Have a good outline of what you’re going to say beforehand so you can limit it to one take.

3. Contribute to sites in your niche 

Since you’re an expert in your niche, you should become a staple member of a few online communities. These could be a local online forums, monthly meet ups or even one of the many niche forums (which are called subreddits) on Reddit. Don’t just drop your most recent videos or blog posts in the community and leave; become an actual member. Leave valuable comments, help members with their questions, and contribute overtime. Once you get a feel of how it works, start submitting your own content. When you do post, it should function similarly to your expert level blog posts and videos.  

4. Give Google+ the old college try

By now you have a pretty good handle on Facebook and Twitter, but have you branched out to Google+ yet? If not, now might be a good time to dive in headfirst and join some of the awesome communities in Google+. We wrote a handy guide to help you get started. Try circling up with some thought leaders in your industry and interacting with them. Share some great content and start building relationships. Want to take it a step further? Use that new video equipment from above and host some Google Hangouts to answer some questions about your topic of choice. Google+ Hangouts are a great way to be an authority in your industry or niche.

There you have it, 4 useful ways to spend your time now that you’ve stopped guest blogging. If you have any other great ideas, please share in the comments. 

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© 2014 – 2018, Contributing Author. All rights reserved.

  • Pears Johnson

    I totally agree with your blog post. As long as you keep on writing awesome content on high value websites you should be find. I am not even sure how Google will police unlawful guest posting.

  • Chipper Nicodemus

    Great point Malcolm! Thanks for reading.

  • Chipper Nicodemus

    Hi Karen,

    I’m guess by PPT submission you are talking about sites like Slideshare? If so, they normally will “nofollow” all links out, so you won’t get any page rank passed through. If you have an awesome preso it very well could get you some great traffic!

    Thanks for reading and the great question.


  • Karen E. Williams

    Hey, Thanks for sharing the post and your thoughts on this topic. A lot of people still debate on this topic and most of them still consider guest blogging, but try and avoid paid links. I would like to know your thoughts on PPT submission? Does it help in getting traffic and improving page rank?

  • Malcolm Galt

    Great article very informative, I personally guest blog. When I have found something worthwhile to comment on. I feel its a pat on the back to the writer who has put in a lot of effort to research some topic. The fact that its not carrying as much weight with SEO is great, means that when someone take the time to comment, its real.

  • Chipper Nicodemus

    Thanks for reading Mark! There are a lot of great companies that are doing an awesome job at videos.



  • Mark

    I really like your suggestion with using videos, sites like Moz and KISSmetrics have been doing video content for the last year (okay longer in the case of Moz but you get my point) and they are a great source of traffic for them.

  • Chipper Nicodemus

    Thanks Josh! Glad you liked the tips!



  • Chipper Nicodemus


    Thanks for the comment, you make a very good point. The nofollow attribution is the key point of your comment, but for most of our small business customers it is easier and more sound advice to not even suggest dabbling in guest blogging, nofollow or not. I think to Matt Cutts’ point it is human nature to push the boundaries. For example someone will do one guest post, nothing happens, do another post, nothing happens, on and on, but before they know it they have been penalized by Google for guest blogging. Hope that helps understand where I was coming from.

    Thanks for reading and best of luck!


  • Jeff Ente

    I have to agree with @Anabelle. I seem to remember Cutts saying that there was nothing inherently wrong with guest blogging, just that Google felt that much of it was being published just to create spammy links. In fact, here is what he said:

    “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.”

    That being said, the action items that you list seem like solid ideas that people should try regardless of their guest blogging efforts.

  • Anabelle

    If you read Cutt’s article properly, you’ll see that guest blogging isn’t dead. It’s SPAMMY guest blogging, guest blogging for SEO purposes, that’s dead.

    If you write a guest blog post once in a while, and the host blog puts your link in nofollow, then there’s no risk to your pagerank. Let’s just add some nuance here…

    That being said, those strategies you mention are also good. Let’s just not be too extreme about completely stopping guest blogging.

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