Outbound Linking, Hummingbird and SEO

Given that I’ve been blogging for 6 years, and for most of that time, at the pace of 3 posts a week, I have amassed a few guest posts on this site.

As the only writer for my blog, and as someone who prides herself in publishing only original content, it’s nice to have the occasional guest post. It means one less post for me to write that week, and that is a blessing. In addition, for people who are just starting out as bloggers, guest-posting on a more well-known site is a great way to get your name and a link to your new blog out there. Guest blogging on a sit that’s bigger than yours can be a win-win: the blogger gets (quality) content, and the guest poster gets seen in a bigger venue.

However, I very seldom say yes to guest posts. I get, on a daily basis, about 3-4 requests from people offering to write guest posts for my blog. 99% of them are spam. I can tell at a glance that they have never read my blog, and they don’t have a clue what it’s all about: they simply harvested my URL from the web, or they purchased a list with my name on it.

So, what’s the big deal about guest posting? Well, first of all, Google’s Algorithm ranks your site on a few specific factors: one is how often the site is updated. The more often your site updates, the better it is. Fallow, boring sites that never change don’t rank as high. Links are another thing that Google uses to rank your site. If someone links to your site from their site, that’s a good thing: according to Google, it must mean that your site has useful and valuable information worth sharing, right?

Yes. But people trying to game the system are putting out hundreds of requests per day, asking to write guest post on blogs to create much-needed link juice for their sites, even paying to have guest posts placed on blogs. But Google’s Algorithm, has gotten wise to this practice.

I’m not saying that I’m going to refuse guest posts from here on in–and I have been pretty picky about who I allow to write on my blog in the past–but I am going to be even more careful about who I allow to post here. I think that the day of having a random stranger email me with a guest post and me reading it and deciding to publish it (if I liked it) are over. From here on in, I’m only going to publish guest posts from trusted sources (namely, people I actually know).

Simply put, if you are creating excellent quality content, and you are putting it out regularly, and not trying to game the system, you should have nothing to fear from Google’s Algorithm.

SEO Today – Infographic - An Infographic from IDF Marketing

Embedded from IDF Marketing


More reading:

What Is Google Hummingbird And What Does It Mean For The Future of SEO?

Are Your Outbound Links Hurting Your SEO? 

The Decay and Fall of Guest Blogging for SEO



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Rebecca Coleman

Social Media Marketing Strategist, Blogger, Author, Teacher, Trainer. Passionate foodie, mom to Michael, fueled by Americanos. I love my bike. Soon-to-be cookbook author. Localvore with a wanderlust.

Comments 5

  1. I’m not sure what all of this means, but I got a strange request the other day. A company that I had on my Links page asked to be removed because of Google SEO changes. This was a company whose services I had used many times and was recommending to my site visitors on a Resources page of my site. It was a personal recommendation that I initiated, not the company. No one with the company asked me to put their link on my site, but now they were asking me to NOT recommend their services. Things have definitely changed!

    1. I’ve had several requests like that as well, these last few weeks, Mark, and that’s why I wrote the post. These were legitimate guest posts that I had previously published on my blog. Which is why I’ve now made the choice to not publish guest posts unless it’s someone I know really well.

  2. Way too much has been assumed about Google’s recent changes, they have never liked any form of “unnatural” linking and their description of a natural link is probably not what we consider natural.

    Take your Infographic above, I checked the link out and seems to be a site offering an Infographic for a link back, but could also be a way to buy links via the graphic.

    A Google search for

    “Embedded from IDF Marketing”

    shows 11 results so far, as more add the embedded code to their site there’s an obvious footprint, is this a natural link or unnatural?

    Reading your content that Infographic doesn’t really fit with it, so if I were a Google manual reviewer I might suspect you’ve been paid to add the Infographic for the link. I’m not a manual reviewer so don’t care either way, but if I were and I was looking at other sites with the same graphic I’d be looking for the relatedness of the content to the graphic, does it fit??? If this is a link that’s been paid for, when more links are sold via other sites it will be come obvious because the content tends to below quality (yours isn’t low quality).

    Another example, you have three sitewide links from your footer to the theme developer etc… I develop themes and have used the same sort of footer links in themes. One theme is used on so many sites it resulted in over 2.5 million backlinks, Google sent me the unnatural linking message via webmaster tools, site lost it’s PR, rankings basically because too many people used the theme. Were the users of my theme also impacted in a negative way for linking to me (there was an easy to use tick box for removing the links)? I don’t know.

    David Law

    1. Hey, David;

      I honestly don’t have the answers to your questions. Google and their algorithm is pretty complex. I can tell you that blog post was NOT paid for in any way, and I did write the copy ahead of the infographic myself with the infographic in mind.

      Thanks for reading and your thoughtful comment! I will continue to research…

  3. Hi,
    The links are very much important for any blog to have, whether you will talk about the inbound link or the outbound links. This is a good piece of information to share with the others.

    In fact, it is a good move to use the infographics to save users time as well.

    Thanks for sharing a quality.

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