By Dave Brown
Guest blogging is one of the most effective ways to divert traffic to your online business. Not only does it bring traffic from a wider range of audiences, it also imbues your site with authority. That’s something Google loves. Not only will that help you rank better, but also help get repeated traffic and gain customer loyalty.
However, you need to have a guest blogging strategy if you are to get a large ROI for your hard work. Without a strategy, you won’t get the results you desire. This involves using best practices and avoiding rookie mistakes. So here is the ultimate guide to devising a guest blogging strategy.
Determine Guest Blogging Goals
You need to know what exactly you want to achieve with guest blogging. It starts with knowing your goals and listing them out. These could be just getting more traffic to your website or building awareness of your brand or product. It could also be to attract in bound links and get more sponsorships for your brand. You could also want to establish authority on a subject to attract the attention to other companies.
All of these are achievable goals. However, you need to focus on one or two and not all of them to succeed. Every guest post will have to be optimized for your goals. If you try to generally appeal to all audiences and accomplish everything at once, you probably won’t get far. Like blogging about anything else, guest posting has to appeal to a niche audience and serve a specific purpose.
Find the Right Sites to Guest Blog For
Finding a site to guest blog for is crucial. You must find out which sites cater to your niche. It’s good to find a site that posts a variety of content as well. However, a niche site that caters to your audience will help you get a greater ROI.
You can find those sites by picking a keyword or a phrase and pairing it with “write for us”. You can do the same with “guest article”, and “become a contributor”. These are the basic phrases that sites use for their pages which describe rules for guest posts.
You should maintain a list of guest-posting websites that you find. It’ll be easier that way to single out the ones that grant you the best traffic boosts.
Other ways to search for these websites include searching on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
The Best Sources for Guest Blogging Opportunities
The best way to find sites for guest blogging is to look to sites that show you the traffic originating from those sites. Tools like SEMrush and Similarweb will show you which of the sites you’ve picked out generate the most traffic.
You can also use Open Site Explorer to check the domain authority of the sites you’ve listed. That will show you if the sites you’ve considered are well regarded by online visitors and consumers. This way, you can rank the websites you’ve listed in order of greatest potential ROI. You can invest resources and time in those sites depending on the traffic they can generate.
Keep a Lookout for Guest Blogging Opportunities
Remember to always keep your ear towards the ground. Look for guest blogging opportunities on websites like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Also, keep searching for new guest posting opportunities on Google. Keep updating your list so that your guest posting potential doesn’t dry out. Remember that if you keep posting on the same sites, your ROI will eventually dip. So it’s important to seek out new avenues.
Write Stellar Content
This is a given. You need to write relevant, actionable, and useful content in order to attract customers. Even if someone is a regular reader, they will lose interest if you don’t provide them value. However, for guest posts, you will have to generate content that isn’t just useful, but accurate, authoritative and relevant.
You will also have to generate content that is great to look at. Remember that people hate long paragraphs and long sentences. They want bite sized information on the internet. So, remember to split up your content into headings, sub-headings, and small paragraphs. This will not only help retain people’s interests, it will also help them find what they’re looking for. It will also help Google’s algorithms crawl through your content to give them a succinct, and direct answer.
Use Beautiful Images
Remember that you need to make your content as accessible and interesting as possible. So, use some rich, high resolution images in your posts. You can do this by taking screenshots from videos, or by using free images from copyright free sites. Some great examples for those sites include Pexels, Pixabay, Unsplash, and Picjumbo.
Write on Relevant Topics
You’ll need to do your research for every guest post. You can’t just write about what you know. You need to come up with relevant, trending, and accurate information. You can’t give stats from 5 or 6 years ago, and you can’t talk about dead topics.
Check Google Trends, News sources, and Google’s most searched for terms for relevant topics. Also check trends on social media sites for some clues on what to write about.
If you want to consistently produce great guest posts, why not hire a guest posting service. They will optimize your posts with the best keywords and phrases and include the best content.
Don’t Forget to Connect with the Site Owner
The guest posting topic approvals process has to be discussed with the site owner. You can’t just come up with an idea and just send it to the site owner. You need to build up a relationship with the owner. That way, you’ll get an idea of what they like to post on their site.
Perhaps they have a preference for sticking to the world limit or only publishing the latest research. Perhaps they only want certain types of topics posted on their site. Establishing a good rapport with the owner/s will help speed up the approvals process. You can even list a couple of topics based on your experience with them for future posting.
Promote Your Content
Remember that you shouldn’t rest on your laurels after your guest post has been approved and posted. You need to promote that guest post aggressively on your social media or your website in order to get the most hits possible. This will not just generate more traffic to your own website, it will also improve your post’s Google ranking.
The Site Owner Will Be Happy with Increased Traffic
The guest site owner will also be happy with the increased traffic to their site. If you promote your guest post well, you may see the owner reaching out to you for congratulations. They may even ask you when you’re going to post next. This will improve your relationship with the site owner.
Craft a Stellar Guest Bio
In 2018, Google made a huge change to its search algorithms with the E-A-T protocol. Google upped the preference for Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness in its search algorithms. One of the ways that you can take advantage of this change in Google’s protocols is to work on a good posting bio.
It has been highlighted that if you work on a profile or a bio that is linked to your work, it will boost your recognition. Hence, if you keep writing good content, you can establish a niche that you’re considered authoritative in. Google will consider posts that are coupled with your bio authoritative and promote them more.
This will in turn boost traffic to the guest posting website and to your site indirectly. The guest site owner will not mind the extra traffic at all.
Plan Out Your Posting Schedule
You need to plan out your posting schedule for guest posting after you’ve starting posting regularly. Assuming that you will be posting regularly, remember that you will have more than one site to cater to. Hence, creating a schedule to plan out your guest posts, and deliver on them by a certain date is crucial.
You can either do this using the various calendar apps available from Google, Apple, Microsoft, etc. Or you can go old school and use an actual calendar. However, the former is much better in my opinion. It actually allows you to set reminders and adjust your schedule easily if need be.
Using these tips and tricks, you can devise a great guest blogging strategy.
Dave is the head of guest blog writers at Content Development Pros. All the guest blogging material handled by the company is supervised by him. He enjoys reading Terry Pratchett, watching Anime, and sketching to relax.