SEO Glossary / Guest Blogging

Guest Blogging

What is Guest Blogging?

Guest blogging is the practice of writing and publishing a blog post on another person or company’s website. Most guest bloggers receive credit for their post (and a link to their website) in their author byline.

Why is Guest Blogging Important?

Guest blogging is important because it helps you build relationships with others in your industry, expose your brand to a new audience, drive referral traffic to your website, establish yourself as a thought leader, and build potentially SEO-boosting backlinks to your website.

Best Practices for Guest Blogging

Let’s take a look at a few best practices for guest blogging.

1. Pitch Relevant Websites

Guest blogging can expose your brand to a new audience, but this won’t help you unless you pitch websites with audiences that are interested in your brand and the topic you’re writing about.

The good news is you have a lot of ways to find relevant sites. One of the quickest and easiest is to use Ranktracker’s Keyword Finder and SERP Checker tools to identify keywords and websites relevant to your niche.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Go to Ranktracker’s Keyword Finder
  • Enter a broad keyword or phrase related to your niche
  • Select results relevant to your niche
  • Use the SERP Checker to evaluate the SEO metrics of these sites

For example, if you run a blog about home decor or sewing, you might search for “quilting fabric” to find blogs that have talked about this exact topic.

2. Pitch Sites with Traffic

Guest blogging helps get your brand in front of a new audience and drive referral traffic to your website, but both of those things are only likely to happen if the site you write for actually gets traffic.

That’s why we recommend finding sites with a minimum of a few thousand organic visits per month. Use Ranktracker’s Web Audit tool to assess the traffic and SEO health of potential guest blogging sites.

3. Pitch Multiple Sites at Once

No matter how good your pitch is, the harsh reality of guest blogging is that many blogs will ignore your email because most are inundated with guest post pitches daily. They simply don’t have time to respond to everyone.

For that reason, if you want to increase your odds of getting published, you should never pitch just one site at a time.

As a general rule of thumb, if you want to write and publish one guest post, you should pitch at least 5-10 sites. You may end up with multiple sites giving you the green light, but it’s always better to have many options than none.

To pitch a website, reach out via email to the owner, editor, marketing manager, content director, or whoever is in charge of the blog. In your outreach email, include a quick guest post pitch that includes:

  • Who you are.
  • What you want to write about.
  • Why you’re the best person to write it.

Use Ranktracker’s SEO Tasks to keep track of your outreach efforts and follow-ups.


Does Guest Blogging Still Work?

Yes, but it’s harder to land guest posts than it used to be, as many website owners have to sift through a flood of mediocre guest post pitches every day. However, if you can break through the noise with a great pitch, you’ll still enjoy the benefits of guest blogging: exposure to a new audience, new relationships, referral traffic, and backlinks.

How Much Do Guest Bloggers Get Paid?

If you work with highly reputable magazines and publications, you may get paid for your guest post, but generally, website owners don’t pay bloggers for guest posts. This is because guest blogging has countless other benefits, so most marketers are willing to do it for free.

Is Guest Blogging Bad for SEO?

Google’s Matt Cutts published an infamous blog post in 2014 proclaiming that “guest blogging is done.” But he was primarily referring to the low-quality guest blogging that many SEOs were using at the time, where they published low-quality posts on questionable sites for link-building purposes only. Writing a helpful, valuable blog post for an established, authoritative site with a relevant audience can still help your SEO a great deal—and is extremely unlikely to hurt it.