Matt Cutts, Google’s head of search spam yesterday posted a blog post titled “The decay and fall of guest blogging for SEO“. In the post, he goes on to explain how guest blogging became very spammy and used by many SEO “experts” to build link and increase a website’s page rank. According to Matt Cutts, if you are using this SEO practice for 2014, then you better watch out. Google will be taking notes and you will be put down.
Okay, I’m calling it: if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop. Why? Because over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.
So is guest blogging dead or what?
At ISEdb.com, we have had many guest bloggers and very respectable and knowledgeable search engine and Internet marketing experts. We still welcome guest bloggers. However, we have been also receiving the type of spammy emails similar to the one Matt posted on his blog. Actually it is an exact copy of hundreds of emails I have been receiving for the past few years. I have fell victim to some of these emails but once you dig into the article you will quickly realize some of the links placed in the article have nothing to do with the topic and serve no purpose other than linking to some spammy site.
That is what Matts is talking about. If this is the SEO practice you are using to build links and increase page rank then STOP IT. It is just ugly and will do you no good and I am glad Google is finally doing something about it.
Ultimately, this is why we can’t have nice things in the SEO space: a trend starts out as authentic. Then more and more people pile on until only the barest trace of legitimate behavior remains. We’ve reached the point in the downward spiral where people are hawking “guest post outsourcing” and writing articles about “how to automate guest blogging.”
Search engines are becoming smarter and slowly catching up with many of the spammy SEO methods many are using. Before adopting any practice, I would encourage you to ask yourself or your SEO company if you are doing this for your brand, customers, or to trick search engines. If it is the latter, then drop it. If it works today it will not work tomorrow.
He later added:
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. I changed the title of this post to make it more clear that I’m talking about guest blogging for search engine optimization (SEO) purposes.
I just want to highlight that a bunch of low-quality or spam sites have latched on to “guest blogging” as their link-building strategy, and we see a lot more spammy attempts to do guest blogging. Because of that, I’d recommend skepticism (or at least caution) when someone reaches out and offers you a guest blog article.
So here you go. If you are guest blogging for a good reason then keep doing it. If you are only doing it for SEO then it will only hurt you and your brand.