If you’ve built a following on your blog or you have a well-known brand, you’ve most likely been approached about writing for another blog. Now you must decide, are guest blog posts worth the effort? A guest blog post can be a great opportunity for your blog or brand. However, they can be time consuming and in some instance, costly. Today, we’ll learn how to determine if they fit in your digital marketing strategy.

Why You Want to Write Guest Blog Posts

 Guest Blog Posts Can Boost Your Site’s Rank

From a SEO perspective, guest blog posts can provide a great boost to your site’s authority. Not sure what that means? Basically, if you write a guest post on another blog, and they provide a followed link back to your blog or website, your site can benefit. A follow link is essentially a vote for or endorsement of your blog or website by the other site. They share a little bit of their site’s authority with you when they give you that link. Ideally, you want your links to be follow vs no-follow. Since the follow link passes some of their page rank, it can help you appear higher in the SERP. The no follow link doesn’t help with your site’s authority or rank. However, a no follow link is not an immediate reason to turn down an opportunity. More about this in a minute.

The more highly relevant, authoritative, follow links you have from other blogs or websites back to your web property, the better. Now, it’s important to pay attention to the words, highly relevant and authoritative, as these are key to success today. In the past, these two words didn’t matter as much. People cheated by buying links from anywhere and everywhere…. And they ranked their sites using those links. Due to this, Google adjusted their algorithm, forcing people to work harder and earn relevant links. Link buying is dead.

Guest Blog Posts Can Drive Web Traffic

While a no-follow link is not ideal from an SEO perspective, it can still be worthwhile. No follow links can generate traffic and brand awareness. Even without a follow link, a guest blog post can give your website a nice boost of new traffic. If you write a post and get 100 visits or 1,000 visits or heck, 10,000 visits from the post, do you care what type link you secured? A guest blog post that drives traffic to your site exposes your brand and website or blog to lots of new potential customers. And that’s something most businesses want.

Is this Guest Blog Opportunity Right for Your Business?

When you are approached with a guest blog post opportunity, ask some questions to determine your answer. Guest posts take time and effort to write and you may not be able to fulfill all requests that come in. It’s possible, you may need to choose from several opportunities.

Three Steps to determine if a post opportunity is a good fit:

  1. Review the website or blog you’ve been asked to write for. Is it relevant to your business? Is there site high quality? Do you see grammatical errors or is the copy well written? Remember their site is endorsing yours, do you want to be associated with them?
  2. If you review the site and determine it looks like a good match, then ask about the post requirements. What is involved? What’s the required word count? A 500 word post takes less time than 1,500. Must the post have a certain number of sources? Do you have to link to their posts? How long will it take you to write this post? What’s the deadline? Do you have time to do this within your current queue?
  3. What does your website or blog need most right now? Are you in need of authority, traffic or both? Are they offering a follow or no-follow link? What’s their DA (domain authority)? If you really need authority but your site’s authority is already equal to or higher than the site offering you the opportunity, your DA won’t rise much with their new link. However, a follow link from a highly authoritative site can help boost you quite a few points. You’re not going to go from 1 to 100 overnight but you might move up a handful of points from one great link. How much traffic does their site get monthly? What’s the opportunity for you from a new traffic perspective? If they have a lot more traffic than you do, then it’s probably worth your time and effort. However, if they get less traffic – weigh everything together to decide what’s best for your business.

Choosing Which Guest Blog Opportunities to Pursue

Once you have the questions above answered, you’ll probably be able to decide easily. You may be new enough that you want to respond to all guest blog post opportunities because your site or blog needs both authority and traffic. Or, you may be well established and have multiple opportunities each month, such that you can’t really fulfill all the requests you receive. And that’s when you must choose which ones make the most sense for your business. Guest blog posts can present a great opportunity for you or they can become a time-suck that doesn’t provide much ROI. It’s important to think of all potential benefits to determine if a guest post opportunity is right for your business.

Bonus Tip

In order to make the decision easier in the future, track each opportunity. Keep a spreadsheet with information on each post that you write and note what your DA on the day it goes live. See if there’s an impact in the next 30,60, 90 days from the follow link. Also, check your referring traffic source information within Google Analytics to see how much traffic the guest post generates. See if there’s steady traffic or better yet, traffic that converts. If it’s a great partnership, you should see new traffic that’s engaged (reading more content, spending more time on your site, converting) and isn’t that the goal? We want to see ROI for our efforts.