Guest blogging is one of the most effective ways to get high-quality backlinks to boost your SEO rankings. Sixty percent of blogs write 1-5 guest posts per month, with 3% writing over 100 guest posts per month.
However, it’s not how many guest posts you write that matters, but how you do it. If you’re doing things wrong, writing more guest posts won’t help much. By focusing on the following five tips, you can maximize your guest blogging efforts and get superior results from the guest posts you are already writing.
1. Determine Who and Where Your Customers Are
The first step is figuring out your target audience. By determining who your customers are and which online spaces they are hanging out in, you’ll be able to better target your guest post submissions to reach the right readership.
Don’t just guest post on random blogs. Let’s take that a step further: Don’t just guest post on random blogs in your niche. It should be self-understood that writing guest posts on blogs that aren’t relevant to your niche is a waste of effort. However, even within your niche, your readers may be spending more time on certain blogs than others.
You first need to know your readership demographics, information you can get from Google Analytics, Facebook, Instagram, and other sites. There are a few ways to figure out which sites they are spending time on.
One way is to look where your referrals are already coming from. If you have done some guest posting in the past, which guest blogs were effective at driving traffic?
Another way is to poll your readership. Create a pop-up survey on your site or send it to your email list. Ask them about the top blogs they like and trust in your niche. Ask them which influencers they look up to and trust.
Yet another way is to figure out what your readers are searching for online. Start by figuring out the top keyword phrases driving traffic to your own site. Google Analytics and Google Search Console will come in handy for this.
Then, find out which other blogs are consistently ranking for those same keywords. You can also ask your readers directly which issues concern them most.
Finally, you can find out where your competitors are getting their backlinks from and pitch guest post ideas to those same sites. Use a tool like SEMrush and Ahrefs to run a backlink analysis on your top competitors. If you don’t want to write guest posts on your main competitors’ sites, this is an excellent strategy.
2. Target the Highest Authority Sites
Targeting the highest authority sites in your niche will ensure you get the most out of your backlinks. Domain Authority is not the only metric you should look at, but it’s a big one. Try to target sites with a DA of 80+, if possible. Try not to go below 50. The average DA score of your referring sites is one metric Google considers when determining backlink strength.
Check the site’s readership and relevance. Just because a site has a high DA doesn’t mean it’s good. It can be hard to figure out a site’s readership demographics without insider access to analytical reports, but you can check the comments section and tools like Similarweb to get a general idea.
One thing worth considering is whether the readers seem like customers or people who are mostly interested in free stuff. At the very least, they should be heavily invested in your niche and ready and willing to take action.
For local links and citations, you want to ensure the site you guest blog for has a strong presence in the community. Local links don’t always have to come from sites in the same industry. The fact that you serve the same community establishes a base to collaborate on.
In addition, if you live in a small town, only getting links from sites with DA scores of 80+ can sometimes be unrealistic. The most important thing is that the site is well-visited and the business is respected by the people you serve.
3. Establish Your Authority in Your Field
Guest posting isn’t just about getting backlinks. It’s an opportunity to establish yourself as an authority in your field. When you appear on influential blogs, it reaffirms your credentials. You will start becoming more well-known, and other bloggers may start reaching out to you to submit guest posts to your own blog or collaborate in other ways.
Writing a killer guest post is crucial. That’s why quality is more significant than quantity. Writing hundreds of bland, low-level blog posts that only superficially cover a topic or regurgitate the same content other bloggers are writing won’t help establish you as an authority.
Writing better quality posts will get you noticed more. You’ll be able to point to those blog posts as samples when submitting guest post pitches to other blogs. You’ll get more placements on higher-quality blogs.
What is a killer guest post? Some tips to consider include:
- Do your keyword research beforehand. Target high-volume, low-competition keywords.
- Write original content, and write about a new topic in each guest post.
- Use high-quality sources and statistics.
- Use personal experiences and original research or case studies to establish your authority and connect with new audiences.
- Break up your article with headings, subheadings, and paragraphs.
- Include plenty of white space, and make your article skimmable. Use bolding as necessary.
- Optimize the article for SEO. Include the target keyword in the right places, and add LSI keywords.
- Don’t forget about high-quality graphics. Invest in premium stock photos, or take your own pictures.
- Insert quotes and CTAs as needed.
- Link to the best pages on your site.
- Take into account the publishing site’s guest post guidelines, formatting styles, and outbound link guidelines.
- For an extra punch, create an accompanying YouTube video that the site owner can embed in the article. That can help you grow your YouTube channel as well.
Another way to use guest posts to establish your authority in the field is by writing a killer bio.
Typically, you’ll be able to add a short byline at the end of your article of 2-5 sentences or so. Since you’re limited in space, you’ll have to choose your words carefully. Write about who you are, what your blog talks about, and what your company aims to accomplish.
4. Talk About Topics You Don’t Cover in Your Site
It can seem a bit like too much effort to write new content for other sites when you could invest all that effort or money (if hiring writers) into your own site. Some of the sites you are guest posting for may even be competitors, which can sting even more.
You may wonder why you shouldn’t just rewrite blog posts you already published on your own blog, thus ensuring your competitors aren’t ranking for keywords you could have ranked for yourself.
Part of offering high-quality guest post services includes writing about new topics that you don’t already cover on your site. Rewriting articles for guest posts can come across as lazy, and high-quality sites won’t go for it. They want fresh content with fresh ideas.
It’s important to diversify your content and audience. Writing about a topic or keyword you are already ranking for can mean that the same people who already know about you find your guest posts. You won’t get any new traffic that way.
Write for other blogs as if they were your own. Put in the same money, time, and effort to ensure quality as you would if the post were going on your own site. It will be published with your bio, after all, so it will reflect on you either way.
5. Strengthen Your Connection in Your Field
Finally, use guest posting as a way to network and strengthen your connections in the field. With each blog post you write, build a relationship with the blog’s owner. Leave an open space for future collaboration opportunities of different types.
Networking is critical. By establishing new connections, you’ll open up additional guest blogging opportunities. The way you write your email pitch and how you communicate with the blogger you’re writing the guest post for is important.
Be professional, but be friendly as well. If you have any common ground or experiences that can help create a connection, talk about it in your email pitch. Whether you attended the same university or come from similar backgrounds, there are many ways to establish common ground. Do your research beforehand.
Try connecting on social media as well. Connecting with other bloggers on LinkedIn and even Facebook can help you expand your network.
Guest blogging| Final Thoughts
While there are other backlink building methods, such as broken link building, guest posting is perhaps the most effective strategy in the long run. Not only can you get backlinks, but you can network with other content creators and influencers and establish your credentials in the field.
Besides, writing guest posts tends to attract even more guest post opportunities.