The Disadvantages Of Making Your Blog Guest Post Friendly

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If you're thinking about making your blog a 'guest post friendly' platform, there are a few things you should know first.

I’m sure by now you’ve heard of the many benefits of publishing guest content on your blog.

If you have not, then let's take a quick look:

Benefits of making your blog 'guest post friendly'

Accepting guest posts is a great way to add variety and a whole new perspective to your blog.

When it comes to diversifying content, there's nothing more effective than inviting bloggers and industry experts to come and share their knowledge, insights, along with their expert advice with your readers.

In addition to adding value to your blog, letting the right people come and write for you is a great way to free up some of your time, so that you can perhaps focus your energy on other areas of your blog development and marketing.

Benefits for guest bloggers

For the person doing guest blogging, there are many benefits to be gained.

Guest posting is still very much an effective strategy for doing blog and content promotion.

Generally, guest posting should be part of every blogger's content marketing strategy.

I’m all for writing guest posts too. And, while I don't do as much of it as I used to, I still love writing a great piece of content from time to time to share on one of my favorite guest blogging sites.

For many bloggers, guest writing has been a huge part of their brand promotion strategy.

Through guest posting, bloggers can demonstrate their knowledge and expertise to a whole new audience, and of course, drive new traffic and help them grow their own readership.

However, there are some people STILL doing guest blogging completely the wrong way.

Let's b honest here:

If you're still using guest blogging to primarily improve your SEO. It's not as effective as it used to be.

In addition, most blog owners are savvy and cautious about what kind of content and what types of external links they allow in guest content.

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The dark side of accepting guest content on your blog

So, if you're not yet accepting guest posts on your blog but would like to start, I urge you to read the rest of this article.

I don't want to put you off from making your blog guest post friendly, I only want to give you some guidance, and make you fully aware of some of the disadvantages of using this strategy to add more content to your blog.

As I mentioned earlier, guest posts are great for diversifying knowledge and for bringing in new perspectives for your readers.

However, if you're not careful, or don't set proper submission guidelines, for example, accepting guest posts can and probably will ruin your blog’s credibility quickly.

I know this because this was one of the mistakes I made many years ago with my first blog when I decided to accept guest posts.

Posting poor quality guest content on your blog will make your readers question whether YOU actually care about your blog anymore.

Your blog’s credibility is always going to be at stake each time you publish what YOU THINK might be, a quality guest post.

So, with that said, let's look at some of the disadvantages of using guest content for your blog.

The disadvantages of making your blog guest post friendly
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#1. You're going to be bombarded by 'poor quality' guest post submissions

One of the main problems with accepting guest post submissions is that a lot of what you will receive, won't necessarily be what you expect, in terms of quality.

I ran a guest post friendly blog over at my old site, Magnet4Marketing, for almost 3 years, and amongst the hundreds of submissions I received each month, only a dozen or so would get my approval.

I wasn't being picky by any means, but the majority of the content I would receive were either too self-promotional or just plain lacked any conviction and value.

What is a quality guest post anyway?

Some folks view a quality guest post in a totally different way, but when I think of a quality piece of content I usually vision one that is on a topic that has been well researched.

I imagine the post would be well written and formatted, and that looks at a topic from a totally different angle or perspective. I imagine a piece of content that identifies a problem and aims to solve that problem for anyone reading it.

I also imagine a post that is bursting with value, and not just made up of contextual content but also images, videos, infographics, stats, facts, screen captures, and more.

As for word count, a guest post that has more than 1200 words is often a good indication that the content has been well researched, but is not always an important factor.

So, in a nutshell, that is what I would consider a quality guest article!

Now, think hard and ask yourself how many guest posts like that do you think you’re going to receive regularly?

Not very many, right?

This is why you need to have a rock-solid guest blogging editorial guidelines page on your blog. A page stating clearly what it is you expect from your guest writers.

Check out this page for inspiration on how to create your own, but please don't copy mine.

#2. You're going to meet bloggers who actually want to break the rules

The other disadvantage with accepting guest posts is that you’re almost always going to get a bunch of people who will want to break the rules.

I've experienced this many times in the past, and guess what? I'm still experiencing it today.

The one rule they usually want to break is this:

Requesting to have a do-follow link back to their own or their client website.

As Kulwant Nagi once wrote in a guest post published here, “there should be one rule for all guest bloggers, every single time…”. Rules are meant to be broken, so the saying goes, and some guest bloggers are going to want to do just that.

You have to stand by your rules, if someone is persistent in wanting to not follow the rules, then you simply have to deny them the opportunity to guest post on your blog.

#3. You’re going to meet bloggers who suffer from 'guest post and vanish' syndrome

Guest post and what? What on earth is that?

Let me explain:

Some guest bloggers will submit a reasonably good guest post. They'll also agree with your submission guidelines and promise to fulfill their part in helping to market and promote the post once it is 'Live' for the world to see. But, for some strange reason, they seem to vanish without a trace.

When I say vanish, they don't respond to emails, they don't show up on your blog to respond to comments or be there to answer important questions, etc.

After making initial contact with you and submitting their guest post, and after you publish that guest post, you just don’t hear from them, ever again.

I call these kinds of guest bloggers 'guest blog and vanish' bloggers.

How to deal with bloggers that disappear and don't respond to comments or help to promote their post?

In situations like the one mentioned above, I would usually strip the links away from their guest author bio and content.

#4. You’re going to meet bloggers who like to submit 'regurgitated' or 'spun' content

Again, going back to the 'quality of guest posts', some bloggers will try and sneak a piece of rehashed or spun out content for you to publish.

A rehashed or spun piece of content is simply a watered down version of something that has already been written and published elsewhere online.

"But, Fabrizio, surely that's called repurposing content, is it not?"

No, this is not to be mistaken for repurposing content.

A repurposed piece of content usually happens when a different medium is used. I.e. turning a blog post into a video or podcast episode.

All that said, rehashed content is not all that bad, it just means the guest post or topic is not unique for your blog.

If you are worried about publishing rehashed, spun, or duplicated content on your blog from guest authors, use Copyscape.

#5. You’re going to get blog posts that look like they’ve been written by a 6-year-old

Not to say that a 6-year old can't write good content that is! My six-year-old daughter is amazing at writing short stories, so I know.

Here's the thing:

The quality of guest posts is one thing, but what do you do when you receive guest posts that look like they’ve been written by a child?

And by that I mean, a post with a ton of spelling errors, appalling grammar, typos of every kind ad poor use of punctuation!

It takes a lot of time to go through and make those posts good. The time that you don't have because you're busy trying to build your blog.

Final words of wisdom

All of the issues I've mentioned above are massively time-consuming.

Accepting guest posts on your blog might be beneficial to your audience. It might help to give you some extra time back to work on your blog marketing and promotion, etc.

But, in addition to all of these beneficial things, you've got to spend a lot of time ensuring that guest blogging happens the right way on your blog and for everyone.

So…

I want to ask you, if you are currently accepting guest posts on your blog right now, how much additional work are you having to do to ensure that all guest bloggers are playing by the rules?

Or, how much time are you spending reading, editing, approving and rejecting guest posts, contacting guest authors, replying to comments and questions left for the guest writers, and so forth?

I imagine it takes a lot of your time, right?

Thanks for reading.

Recommended reading & resources on this topic

1. Guest Posting, Good or Bad? By Sarah Fudin
2. Don't Accept Guest Posts Unless You Follow These 7 Rules By Neil Patel
3. The Guest Blogging Survival Guide By Kristi Hines
4. 3 Critical Tips For Managing A Multi-Author Blog Successfully By Kulwant Nagi

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8 comments on “The Disadvantages Of Making Your Blog Guest Post Friendly”

  1. Hi Fabrizio, Thanks for a great article - putting BOTH sides of the coin.

    I have accepted a few guest posts on a blog in the health niche, but I don't do it often - for all the reasons you mention! Some of the submissions were so poor quality and "off-topic" you couldn't believe it.

    If anyone asks to do a guest post I require them to submit the article and the site they want to link to, and tell them in advance that I have the right to refuse the article and/or the link (before they go ahead). That weeds out the worst offenders.

    I also reserve the right to amend punctuation and grammar, which as you say, can be very time-consuming, but I just couldn't let obvious mistakes stay on my site. Remind me to check this comment thoroughly LOL

    Fortunately, I HAVE had some very good posts too, and some repeat authors.

    It's not something I've done on my main site yet. I did invite someone but she's been too busy, although I am still in hopes - which of course highlights another potential problem.... always have an article in reserve in case there's a delay in your guest poster's schedule.

    So - to come down on one side of the fence, I would definitely accept guest posts, but only from someone I know I can trust.

    Will look forward to reading more of your posts.

    Joy

    1. Hello Joy, thank you so much for taking the time to visit and comment, I appreciate it so much.

      I know exactly what you mean, I also have a niche blog on fatherhood and child custody, although I write some of the articles on that site from time to time, I generally rely on guest articles both free and paid ones for the majority, and boy it can be time consuming to get through some of them. I now only post a few times a month on that site.

      Joy it sounds like you have your guest post guidelines down to perfection. I think if authors know from the very beginning that you reserve the rights to edit and make changes to their posts, it shouldn't leave much room for confusion or arguments.

      On my previous blog at Magnet4Marketing, I used to run into all sorts of problems with authors, especially when I'd tell them that I'd be removing their link to a none-relevant website. Often that just used to tell me they didn't actually read my submission guidelines properly or at all lol.

      Having said all of that, through all the efforts, accepting great guest posts from reliable authors can add so much value to a blog, and I hope maybe by the end of next year to start looking at inviting people I trust to write on this blog.

      Yes having a backup post is useful for sure, especially if you're relying on a guest post on a particular day which you normally publish a post. I use the WordPress Editorial Calendar to help me organise and schedule posts, do you use it too? If not here's the link: https://wordpress.org/plugins/editorial-calendar/ It's a great little plugin.

      Sorry for ranting on lol, anyway great to connect with you here Joy, look forward to reading more of your comments soon, take care and enjoy the rest of your week =)

  2. Hey Fabrizio,

    As you know, I accept guest posts. BUT they are by invitation only.

    I believe it was about four years ago now I had a guy approach me who wanted to write a guest post for me. He was someone I looked up to and very successful in his niche. But, he was in a niche I use to be in but wasn't anymore. He convinced me it would be a good idea but I'll admit it was not a pleasant experience. He was very demanding and picky yet it was MY blog. Well his post didn't get a lot of views or comments so I didn't accept anymore. My readers told me they wanted to hear from me and no one else.

    A year went by and I decided to approach this in a whole different way. I decided to ask my faithful loyal readers and commenters if they would like to write a guest post for me. 1) It would help them get more attention and 2) they could share with my readers something they knew more about than me.

    It was a hit from the start and I only do it once a month and I'm winding up my third year. So although I get requests all the time I have a very polite email response letting them know that they aren't readers or commenters of my blog so they'll never write a post for me.

    I have never had to worry about low quality posts or upsetting Google because I have a relationship with every single blogger I've asked to write for me. It's definitely been a win/win for us all.

    I say if you approach this the right way it's a huge benefit for all concerned. If not then it can be a royal pain in the you know what! LOL!!!

    Great share though Fabrizio and I say go for it. I've got two coming up soon myself.

    ~Adrienne

    1. Hi Adrienne, yeah I remember you said that you accept guest posts by invitation only, I really like that concept and I tried it out for a while at Magnet4Marketing.

      I see how your second approach was a complete hit, because you were inviting people that you already had a connection with, and probably knew that you would get a great post due to their credibility and loyalty, I love that idea. And the great thing about accepting 1 guest post per month, I don't think you'll ever have to worry about not being able to feature a great writer, genius thinking lol!!

      Yeah I definitely want to be able to accept guest posts in perhaps a year's time, when I at least have a more solid community behind my blog, and I'll definitely have your approach in mind too 🙂

      - Fabrizio

  3. Hey, Fabrizio,

    This is my first visit to your blog, and I'm so glad I came. 🙂

    Your title piqued my interest because I just recently (last 1/3 of 2014) started my guest writing series.

    You make some excellent points in this article, Fabrizio, and I agree completely with the first section about the advantages of accepting guest content, and tips to avoid the disadvantages.

    Your first point does not come into play for me because I invite friends and colleagues who put out high quality content, so I’m in complete control what type of content is put on my blog. Brand control is in the forefront of my mind, continually, oh yes!

    There is a big debate about the perfect length of an article. I know what the research says, but I find LONG articles to be tedious myself. I do publish them, absolutely, however, personally - I try to keep to the shorter version of what’s considered acceptable. If it’s going to be 2-3k, may as make it an eBook. 🙂

    I’m sure folks run into the dilemma you speak of in #3, but I hand pick my folks carefully, and let them know they’re responsible to follow up with each and every commenter. Haven’t had a problem yet!

    Awesome tips, Fabrizio, for folks that don’t hand-pick their guests and have a “By Invitation Only” policy, so will definitely be sharing this article. Well done!

    Hope you’re having a great weekend so far.

    - Carol

    1. Hey Carol, welcome to my blog, it’s a real pleasure to have you here.

      I’m pleased you enjoyed reading through my points and can reflect on a few of them. You know something? A lot of bloggers I’ve spoken to says the same thing with regards to accepting guest posts. They invite people they trust, their friends and readers foremost. I know Adrienne does this too, that’s certainly something I want to do in the future when I decide to accept MORE guest posts at the end of 2015. Brand control, I love it!

      As for Marathon posts goes, yeah I know what you mean, I love publishing them myself but find them a challenge at times. I wrote a post about it here actually >> http://www.magnet4blogging.net/writing-ebook-sized-blog-posts/

      I think the guest blogging landscape has changed a lot over the recent years, but I remember the days where I’d spend so much of my time chasing authors to reply to comments, but I suppose that wouldn't really happen if one was to invite people they know and trust to come and write on their blogs.

      Thanks so much Carol for stopping by again and commenting! Doing a spot of Christmas shopping this weekend, as much as I hate shopping, it has to be done ha ha 🙂

      Enjoy the rest of your weekend too

      Fabrizio

  4. Fabrizio,

    While you make valid points in this article, I personally don't believe in letting a few bad seeds destroy the whole experience (even if it is a few hundred bad seeds!) However, you were right on point with my way of thinking: guest posts should be with someone you have established a relationship with, or at the very least, have a blog you respect!

    I'm glad you took the time to point out what can go so wrong with guest posts though. So many are touting the advantages (and there are some very beneficial advantages), they often forget to mention what to look for from those guest bloggers. I am a guest blogger primarily and I don't yet have my own blog so I do it for the love of writing rather than an agenda of what to promote. However, I know that isn't the "norm" so I'm glad you made mention of that as well.

    So far, I only guest blog for people I have established a relationship with because it works the same way for guest bloggers...you don't want to attach your name to a questionable or "spammy" site or it destroys your credibility as a blogger.

    Thank you again for taking the time to point out what to look for, I hope that you can get back to benefiting from guest blog posts despite those trying to take advantage of it. You have great content and I wish you continued success!

    Sincerely,

    Andrea

    1. Hi Andrea, thanks for visiting, reading and leaving a valuable comment and being honest with me.

      I've not lost hope or passion or love for guest blogging, I know how valuable having other knowledgeable influencers come and write for my audience. I'm so looking forward to opening the guest blogging doors in a year or so on this blog, maybe even less than that.

      With this post I wanted to ensure new bloggers knew of some of the consequences of not being careful with accepting guest posts on their blogs, instead of always, as you say, writing another post highlighting the benefits of guest blogging, there are plenty of those around.

      Thanks again for visiting Andrea, hope to see you here again soon. Have a great week.

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