If you’re running a blog, it’s likely that you’ve already heard about guest blogging, which is sometimes referred to as “guest articles”. It is a very interesting practice to gain traffic, improve its SEO and develop its reputation.
So I decided to write a complete guest blogging guide. Here will explain to you first what you can gain by writing guest articles but will also give you tips for targeting the sites you contact.
Introduction to guest blogging
For a start, a small definition of guest blogging for those who do not know what it is: it is a practice to write articles on another site than yours as a guest of the site in question. The article includes one or more links to your blog.
You may be wondering what is the value of spending energy on writing an article that is not intended for you. Why offer free content to another site?
This is a great way to get to know yourself – when you just launched a blog or your blog is still under construction, publishing a guest article gives you a forum to promote your project in a smart way. You benefit from the notoriety of the site on which you publish while offering to him an interesting content in return.
You develop your authority – The blogs that develop most are often those whose author is considered a reference on his subject. Through a guest article, you can precisely put forward your expertise and in addition, do it on sites that are already popular and therefore give you some caution in publishing you.
You get links to your blog – The links are an important principle of SEO and allow your site to gain visibility on the search engines. The guest posting is ideal in this regard as it will allow you to place links to your blog on reference sites … and put these links in a context relevant to the theme of your blog. These backlinks will convey you popularity, an important factor to improve your positioning in search results.
You gain traffic – If your guest article is interesting, it is likely that readers will want to know more about you and go to visit your blog.
How to propose a guest article?
I advise you not to throw yourself in the drafting of an article but rather to proceed step by step: target an interesting site to whom you will propose your article; Understand the specific requirements of this site; Propose an article or subject.
How to find sites that accept guest blogging?
The choice of the right site rests in my eyes on several criteria:
1) It is a site coherent with the theme and the target of your blog: it tackles subjects related to your theme, targets the same public so that its readers are likely to be interested in what you publish on your own Blog.
2) It is a reputed site: the goal of blogging guest is to develop your visibility, your authority and your SEO. It will be difficult to achieve any of these goals if you publish your guest article on a site that has no reputation.
3) It is an active site: it is regularly updated, it is present on the social networks and relays the articles, these attract the engagement of the readers (for example that there are comments and sharing on social networks, etc.).
Be cautious with sites that publish enormous content because it is possible while your article is drowned in the mass and does not enjoy an interesting visibility.
You can first turn to any sites that explicitly say they accept the guest items. It is sometimes enough to do a Google search with the name of your subject and a keyword like “guest article”, “guest blogging”, “become a contributor” …
You can also list sites that you consider as references on your topic. Maybe they do not mention the invited articles; that does not mean they do not accept them if they are offered a proposal! It must be seen as a spontaneous application.
This is going to spy on competing sites. If the sites in question use guest blogging, they must receive links from the sites on which they have published guest posts. There are free and paid tools that list all the links that a website receives, for example Ahrefs or Open Site Explorer(Moz). By studying these links, you can sometimes find ideas of sites to suggest a guest article.
It consists of starting from a blogger that you appreciate in your topic to see if he has published articles in a place other than on his own blog. Some devote a page to articles they have published elsewhere. You can also find information by doing a Google search, by visiting social networks including Facebook, Twitter. Moreover, if the blogger in question always uses the same profile picture, you can do a reverse image search from this photo to find all the sites on which it was posted.
It will sometimes give you leads on sites to be found for guest blogging on the same theme.
If your blog already has some notoriety, lean on the people who post comments on it. Among the people who comment, surely are people who have a site themselves. They already know your blog and may be more likely to welcome you as a guest.
This is a slightly different approach but you can also search for sites ready to interview bloggers. Type for example on Google “blogger interview”, “I interview bloggers” and other keywords in the same spirit. This is no longer quite a guest blogging but for those who have trouble finding sites to post guest articles, it can be an interesting alternative to get quality links, much more if the site is about A theme consistent with yours.
How do you know if the targeted sites are worth it?
- How do you know if these sites are worth it?
- Do they have traffic, influence?
I advise you to observe three numerical indicators which inform you on a site.
The Domain Authority – This is an indicator between 0 and 100 and reflects the authority of a site, taking into account the links it receives. The higher a site at a high Domain Authority, the more likely it is to have influence and be considered a reference in its field. Note that this indicator is exponential: in other words, it is easy to get a score of 10/100 but the higher your score climbs, the more difficult it becomes to reach the next level.
So I advise you to look at the Domain Authority of some noteworthy blogs in your theme in order to have an idea of what a good score on your topic. You can also look at your own Domain Authority and suggest guest articles to Sites that score higher than yours.
Social networks – If the site is present on social networks, look at how many subscribers it has and verify that these subscribers are active through likes, messages or shares.
Sharing counters – If the site has share buttons on social networks, see if they have a counter and if the items are shared or not. It allows you to know if the site is tracked and if its contents attract the interest of the readers. You can also enter the address of the site on “Buzzsumo” to identify the items that were most shared. This is sometimes a valuable aid to better understand the interests of the readership of the target site.
You can also watch how the site presents the guest articles. Is the author and his blog highlighted or is the link relegated to the bottom of the page? If you want to get traffic, better offer your guest article to a site that will really put you ahead. Also check if the link to the guest blog is in dofollow or if it has the nofollow attribute.
I made this unpleasant experience by publishing an article invited on a big site and discovering that this one had put the link in “nofollow” … The benefit in terms of SEO is very different!
Also keep in mind a more strategic question: does this site target the same audience as your blog? If your blog is aimed at amateurs, it is not necessarily relevant to post an article on a site that targets professionals. If a fashion blog highlights low budget brands, it’s not necessarily relevant to offer a guest article to a site that evokes high-end brands.
Even if the article itself is very interesting, people who click on your link and arrive on your blog may be disappointed because the content will be out of sync with their expectations. This is not always the case but it is a point to keep in mind.
How to propose a guest article?
The simplest case is where the blog offers very clear instructions for the submission of a guest article. It contains a dedicated page explaining all the rules that must be respected for an article to be accepted: length, subject, etc. You can for example take a look at the guest blogging guidelines on Marketing Tips.
Most of the time, the blog will give no explicit indication. In this case, it is up to you to contact him with a proposal. I advise you to :
Take the time to visit the site to find out who it is addressed, what kind of articles it posts (computer graphics, long articles, quizzes, etc.).
Check whether the site has already published guest articles. If so, you can see if the profile of guests is in sync with yours. If you find that the site only publishes articles written by eggs when you are a complete stranger, perhaps it is better to turn to another medium in the immediate future. If the site does not publish invited articles, this may mean that it does not know this practice or that it is not open to this type of publication. It will influence how you make contact.
Priority to contact sites that you already know if there are any. These may include sites you regularly comment on, sites that have already mentioned you on social networks, and so on. If you already have a trustworthy relationship with some webmasters, this can be a good starting point for your first guest article.
Then follow these few golden rules.
Show that you know who you are addressing. The effective blogging guest is always a personalized and targeted blogging guest. You are not going to offer your items to anyone and for any reason! This means: know the topic of the site you are contacting; Have an idea of its target (individuals, professionals, beginners, experts, their interests, age, problems); If possible, the first name of the person managing the site.
Who are you and why should the site trust you? If your blog is already online, now is the time to put it forward. If it’s not launched yet, you’re going to have to prove it by some other means. For example, I was contacted by Anderson of the blog “Trafficwithanderson” at the time his blog was not online yet: if I accepted him to write a guest article, it was because he gave me the link to other articles he had already written. I found that it offered interesting and qualitative content.
It is now time to explain your approach. If your interlocutor does not know the principle of guest blogging, this step is very important because it will remove his concerns. For example, you can present things in this way: “I would like to intervene on your blog as a punctual guest. I suggest you write an article on the XXX theme because I think it might interest your readers. It will be a qualitative article with well-spelled spelling, containing more than XXX words. I only ask for a link to dofollow to my own site abc.com.
Here you have two possibilities:
Either you have already written the article and you then propose it directly to the site. This is a method that I find excellent if you have no reference to provide and your blog is not yet online.
Either you have not written the article and you contact the site only to prospect to avoid working for nothing. In this case, do not hesitate to propose several subjects. The site will thus be able to choose the one that seems to him the most interesting and on your side you will be able to keep the other subjects in mind to feed your own blog or for future invited articles.
Stay concise. When we have a site that receives a lot of traffic, we often have several hundred emails a day. It is then very difficult to be really attentive to an e-mail interminable.
Correct yourself. I have already received proposals for guest articles stuffed with spelling mistakes. It does not bode well for the quality of the article afterwards so we tend to say no then the editor may have some exciting things to say on the merits. The form still matters!
When you are told yes:
You have to adapt to the requirements you are required, for example to provide a photo with a precise dimension, a sentence of presentation of you as an author, the link of your social networks, etc. You will sometimes be asked to submit your article with the included HTML tags, write the title tag and meta description, and so on. You can also impose a length, a number of links, etc.
The phrase of presentation is often useful to give you legitimacy as an author. For example, if you write an article of photography tips and you are a professional photographer, it is a guarantee of credibility and it is then quite relevant to mention it.
Also be in step with the type of articles that the site usually publishes. For example, on a High Volume Site of mine, it is very rare that my articles make less than 1000 words. When I receive a proposal for a guest article of only 400 words, I tend to think that there is too much lag with what I usually publish.
Keep in mind that the guest article is not a direct way to advertise your blog. You will instead offer a very interesting and informative content with a simple link to your blog. You have to get readers to click naturally on this link because the content is exciting but it is not an ad-editorial where you openly promote your site!
Finally, treat your guest article as well as you would treat an article on your own blog. In other words, do not hesitate to reply to comments, to share this article on your social networks and in your newsletter, etc.
Evaluate the impact of guest blogging:
There are plenty of ways to evaluate the impact of your guest items according to the goals that are yours. You can, for example, view Google Analytics traffic from the site that posted you, measure the percentage increase in the number of subscriptions to your newsletter following the publication of the article, study whether you have earned more than one article, Subscribers than usual on social networks, etc.
Accept guest articles on his blog:
Before concluding this article, a few words about the inverse practice of accepting guest articles on his blog. If it’s very common on topics like marketing or SEO, it’s much less common on other topics. Still, do not be afraid of guest blogging.
For example, it may allow you to offer your readers a different and complementary view of yours and post more content. It is also the occasion to forge links with other bloggers of the same theme.
I hear sometimes that it also helps to avoid writing from time to time. In reality, accepting invited articles often requires as much (or even more) work as writing an article yourself: between exchanges with the blogger to define the subject, proofreading and formatting of the article, There is still time.
Writing a guest article is not an easy step as you invest a lot of energy for a site that is not yours. It may seem counterproductive at first but I hope to have shown you in this article that we actually have a lot to gain! It remains an exercise that takes time and it is not always easy to find the right balance between writing for oneself and writing for others.