Before we get into the dirty details, let’s start off by saying that guest blogging has been around for a long time. Even since before Google, really. And there are some great reasons to have guest bloggers. Sometimes it’s nice to introduce a new opinion, or to cross-pollinate followers. It can give you new exposure, add new high-quality content to your site, or build up your community. But lately, guest blogging has been going downhill.
For quite some time, SEO experts and Google spokesmen have been warning that guest blogging as a whole has become increasingly spammy. An ever-increasing number of posts by guest bloggers were simply made as a cheap way to garner some dofollow links. This tactic falls a lot more on the black hat end of the SEO spectrum, yet increased warnings against it never seemed to do much to stem the tide of spammy guest blogs.
Well, guest blogging as a spammy link building strategy is over now. Matt Cutts from Google released a video yesterday with a very clear message. “…Stick a fork in it: guest blogging is done; it’s just gotten too spammy.” He continued to say that, if you want someone to put a guest post on your blog, it’s fine. That is, it’s fine IF you know them well and can vouch for them. Even then, put a nofollow on that link.
As the months have passed, warnings from Google and from others have grown increasingly emphatic. They started as observations and suggestions to nofollow to warnings that guest blog spamming was becoming a problem, and have increased from there, until it reached the point that Google has finally just put their foot down.
That’s not to say that good multi-author blogs are a bad thing or are now obsolete. Nor is it saying that there aren’t good reasons for guest blogging, as we said above. The warning was specifically geared towards SEO-geared guest bloggers.
To make a long story short, if you’re using guest blogging for its intended purpose – just to introduce a new voice to your discussion – that’s probably fine. But don’t rely on it or on guest blogging sites or any other manipulative linkbuilding tactic. It’s over. Let it die.