If you have a fairly popular blog or website than odds are that you have already gotten a couple of emails asking you if you allow guest posts. A lot of bloggers take advantage of the offer and think they get a good deal, free content and in some cases, they also get paid. On the other hand, there are bloggers who simply ignore these requests and simply move on, when I see an email asking about guest posting I only think of one thing, which is spam.
No, you should not allow guest posts, as they are against google TOS, they tend to use low-quality content, duplicate or spinned content, you don’t know where you are linking back, helping your competitors to rank, linking back to low-quality websites, and they are easy to report you for selling links.
On the other hand building, guest posts on other websites will rank you a lot faster on Google, my personal recommendation is to use a high-quality guest posting service Click here to check it out
The idea of getting a free article and even some money on the side is almost irresistible for a lot of bloggers, especially for the ones who worked hundreds of hours on their blog and still earning pennies with ads. Some of the guest post offerings might be genuine, but far too often people who this kind of outreach send out hundreds of emails to relevant niches hoping that at least a couple of the emails will deliver results.
The bigger your website is the more offers for guest posting you will get, and sooner or later you will notice a trend. A lot of people who use outreach to build their backlinks tend to use more or less the same template, odds are they have found your website while doing keyword research. The first rule in SEO is to never link back to your competition if you are linking back to your competition and he is not linking back to you then you will have an extremely hard time outranking them.
SEO is always changing and with enough work, a small website can become an authority website, and think of what will you do when your competitor who has a couple of guest posts on your website starts targeting your keywords. If you want to know more about outreach then check out my recent article Why outreach for backlinks doesn’t work ( Top 10 Reasons ).
It is against google TOS
I know that the google TOS regarding link building schemes doesn’t mean a lot to most people but google takes its terms of service extremely seriously. Link building schemes are frowned upon and you might never know when your website will be slapped for them. Now I am not here to preach you what you should do, I have done my fair share of black hat stuff, but if you are a beginner and you don’t know what you are doing just try to follow google’s guidelines and you should be fine.
I have been in the SEO game for a long time and during the years google often made changes to its rules, what was considered ok one day might end up penalizing you the next day. Ranking on google takes a long time but penalizing your website can occur extremely fast. If you want to know what the risks of link building are then check out my recent article What are the risks of building backlinks? ( Top 11 Risks ).
Generally speaking, the guest post which you will receive will have a fairly low quality, especially if you are also getting paid to post the guest post. Now if you are in a new niche of which you do not know anything about and you are outsourcing all the content than odds are that you won’t notice a big difference between what your writers are sending you and what the person who wants to publish a guest post on your site send you.
The only person who will care about the content on your website is you, and if you allow low-quality guest posts on your website then you are doing more harm than good. A couple of low-quality guest posts can drag your website down and ranking your new posts will be a lot harder. If you want to hire a writer to write your articles then you have to know a couple of things, for more information, check out my recent article How to hire a writer for your blog ( In 11 Steps ).
Duplicate and spinned content
People who use outreach to build backlinks tend to consider guest posts as normal backlinks. They usually use spinned or scraped content to build most of their backlinks, and if you don’t know how to check for these than you have just published duplicate content on your website. In most cases, you will get some spinned article with a couple of unique paragraphs, usually at the beginning of the guest post.
Most spinned articles will pass the Copyscape test, but google will pick these up as spinned text and treat them accordingly. Now having a couple of spinned or duplicate content guest posts on your site isn’t the end of the world but it is definitely not helping you, the more of them you have the higher the chances of getting a penalty.
Not knowing where you are linking
Now if you are serious about accepting a guest post you will most likely ask where you will link to, and you will also verify the link before you publish the guest post. The problem is that after a couple of weeks when you have already forgotten about the guest post as you are busy answering spam emails from other guest posters, odd are that the link will not actually point where you thought it was linking.
This is a common tactic by old-timers who know how to exploit these kinds of situations, what they tend to do is to either 301 redirect the link to some other site or they will use the pretty link plugin to redirect to another article or website. In some high completion niches where the SERP is dominated by just a couple of webmasters, this is a common tactic, offering a good amount of money for a guest post to some small website and then redirecting it to the larger website.
Helping your competition to rank
The last thing you would want to do is to link back to your competition, just take a look at some of the high competition niches and you will see that the vast majority of them do not actually link to their competition. A lot of beginners don’t really think a lot about this aspect of guest posting, they only think short term, that they are getting an article for free and in some cases, they are even getting paid to publish the guest post.
Let us say that you and your main competition are targeting the same keyword, your competition doesn’t have any links pointing to you but you do have a couple of links pointing to them, which one of the two do you think Google will rank.
Linking back to low quality websites
A lot of people focus on building backlinks rather than on writing content, and this is reflected in their content. If you have an Amazon affiliate website and you have checked out your competition then you most likely noticed that the quality of these articles is extremely low. A lot of webmasters in order to rank will build as many backlinks as they can, and some of them will get their website deindexed later in time, and the last thing you want is to link to a deindexed website.
On the other hand some bloggers out of desperation to make money will join the dodgiest advertising networks and fill their entire website with malware, ransomware, trojans, and viruses. After google catches on they usually deindex the entire website, although in some cases they simply block the site on google chrome.
Easy to report for selling links
If you are a beginner then you might look at SEO with rose-tinted glasses, but in the world of SEO, not everything is sunshine and rainbows. There is big money to be made in a lot of niches, and the higher the competition is the more aggressive people tend to be. Competitive keywords could make thousands of dollars per day, and there isn’t a lot what somebody wouldn’t do to keep the first position in google.
Once a webmaster has reached the top position they tend to relax and slow down with creating content and building backlinks, this is true for most niches. In high competitive niches, they turn their attention to their competition, as they are already ranking at the first position they can only go down so they will do anything they can to keep that first position. What these webmasters tend to do is to create a couple of smaller websites in the same niche.
These smaller websites will be used as a trap for people who allow guest posts, once the webmaster identifies a new competitor starting to rank they will contact them and ask them for a guest post to one of their smaller websites and offering a lot of money for it. Most new bloggers wouldn’t hesitate to post a guest post for a couple of hundred dollars to a small website. Once the guest post is published the webmaster reports the site for selling links, and if they have several guest posts than their website will most likely be penalized.
As you can see there are a couple of hidden dangers if you allow guest posts from unknown people. Most people who use outreach as a backlinking strategy will send out spam begging you to link back to you, and the odds of your competition targeting you with malicious intent is fairly low, although you might want to think before you allow anybody to guest post on your website.