Matt Cutts recently announced that guest blogging is no longer a viable SEO tool, and I’ve lost count of the number of blog posts, articles, and tweets containing the sentence “Guest blogging is dead,” that I’ve read since—if anything should be declared dead at this point, it’s overused SEO buzz phrases.
The real takeaway from his SEO-world-famous proclamation is that guest blogging for the sake of guest blogging is dead—and anyone who has been following SEO’s recent trajectory probably saw that one coming. The fine folks at Google don’t want spam bloggers spreading subpar content all over the Internet just to get a little PageRank boost, and no one can blame them for it.
If someone offers to share their expert opinion on your blog (and it really is an expert opinion), don’t be afraid to say yes. No one is going to be penalized for making high-quality content more widely available.
If your main objective when writing a blog post is to stuff it with as many keywords as possible, you’re doing it wrong. We’ve heard it said that a keyword density of 4-7% is ideal, which translates to 4-7 keywords per 100 words. That would mean that I’d have to include at least 4 keywords in this short paragraph, and even the most skilled writers would have trouble making that sound natural. Content should be written for the benefit of the people reading it, not strictly for the search engine robots crawling it.
“Content is king.”
Even true statements don’t need to be repeated in perpetuity.
“From an SEO standpoint…”
If you’re starting sentences with those words, it’s probably safe to assume that you’re an SEO professional and whoever you’re speaking to has hired you to optimize their web presence. That means that whatever you’re telling them should, by default, be from an SEO standpoint. Unless the SEO talk is coming out of left field, or you’re talking about SEO as opposed to web design, it’s an unnecessary phrase that we’re all probably better off without.
“Ever since Hummingbird, or Panda, or Penguin…”
Referencing and name-dropping algorithm updates may be necessary sometimes, but Google started using Hummingbird in August of last year (and Panda and Penguin have been around since 2011 and 2012). Five months is plenty of time to adjust to an update, so rather than doing post-Hummingbird, -Panda, or -Penguin SEO, can we all just go back to doing plain old SEO?