Penguin 2.0: How Guest Blogging Will Be Affected

penguin 2.0

Guest blogging is the most popular way of building links. It’s been working so well for most SEOs that bloggers are getting bombarded with dozens of emails a day asking if they accept guest posts.

Although guest blogging will still work after the Penguin 2.0 update, I think the way you build links through guest blogging will change.

Here’s how I think guest blogging will be affected:

Change #1: Social signals

The more tweets, shares and even Facebook likes a post gets the better, right? Although that’s true in most cases, some authors have been cheating the system with the help of Fiverr.

For $5 you can buy over 100 tweets, likes or any other type of social share out there.

You already know search engines look at social signals to help determine the ranking of a website, but after Penguin 2.0, I think, they will focus less on the social count and more on who is sharing it. If someone with a powerful network of 200 influential (and real) people shares your post, that will carry more weight in Google’s algorithm than a share by someone with a network of 2,000 bots and spam purveyors. If it doesn’t now, it soon will.

In addition, Google will most likely look for evidence whether you yourself are sharing your own guest posts on your own social profiles. Because if you aren’t willing to tweet or like your own guest post, chances are you didn’t write a great post.

Solution: Write great content that you can be proud of…ย so proud that you’ll share it on your own social profiles. Further to that, you need to start networking with influencers who have a large social following because if your content is really good, they may even decide to share it. You should also message all of the authors who are in your space with popular social followings. When you write a great guest post, ping them to see if they will tweet about it. It’s much easier to get them to tweet or like your post than it is to get them to link to it.

Change #2: Author rank

Author rank is becoming more commonly used by writers these days. This allows Google to see where you are publishing your content and how well it does throughout the web.

If you continually write great content, Google will eventually place more weight on your content…no matter what site you write on.

At the same time, if you continue to put out crap, they’ll keep track of it and devalue the links in your post. It doesn’t matter if you are blogging on Huffington Post or an unknown blog, they will devalue anything you link to if they notice you are just guest blogging for links.

This means Google isn’t just going to be devaluing sites, but authors now too.

Solution: Be even pickier about the content you put out. If you are unsure how to write exceptionally good content, check out blogs like Copyblogger and Problogger as they will teach you everything you need to know about writing. If you want to learn how I create my content, you can follow my guidelines here or check out this guide to guest blogging for your business.

Change #3: Devaluing links

You already know that links from your author bio aren’t as effective as they used to be. I have a strong feeling that these links are going to carry even less weight than they do now.

In addition to that, Google will be pickier on what links they do give a lot of weight to and which ones they don’t.

If you have a rich anchor text link in the first paragraph or two within a guest post, that link will probably be devalued.

If you are just posting the same old infographic on multiple blogs, those links will also be devalued.

The reason search engines have to do this is because it’s easy to get your content distributed all over the web. The sad part is, I can pay people to just shove my infographic on popular blogs like Mashable and Huffington Post and generate back links…so why should those links carry as much weight compared to the links from a well-known author who puts those links within his/her editorial piece.

Solution: Don’t go for easy link building methods, but instead focus on providing value. If you create something that is great, people will naturally link to it. If you come up with a creative way to illustrate your content, e.g., using infographics, you will be more successful at building quality links than if you only have a basic infographic or text. A good example of this is The Advanced Guide to SEO. It’s an infographic that contains over 45,000 words.

Change #4: Devaluing sites

Sites that are consistently linking out to one site will get penalized. Google wants you to link out to many sites, ideally to ones that are authoritative. If you are writing good content, you’ll naturally do this.

For example, I link out to Wikipedia, Forbes and a few other authoritative sites a lot…it’s not because I am trying to game Google, but because those sites provide great information. So, why not link out to them if it benefits your readers?

Sites that also post irrelevant content are going to be penalized, or their links won’t carry much weight. For example, why would a site about dog food be linking out to a payday loan site?ย It just doesn’t make sense.

Blogs that push spammy links within their content will be devalued. If you do this once or twice, I don’t think there will be an issue, but if you do it on a regular basis, it will really hurt you eventually.

Solution: When picking a site to guest-blog on, make sure to pick one that doesn’t link out to spammy sites, but one that is highly relevant. When you write your guest post, show some love by linking out to other sites that will benefit your readers…even if that other site is your competitor.

Change #5: Co-citations

Have you ever noticed that in many cases when people talk about you or your website, they don’t link to you? This happens a lot with me, especially when it comes to authoritative blogs.

Forbes, and many of the news sites that mention Quick Sprout, don’t always link back to the site.

When I did a search and looked through the last 100 sites that mentioned me, I noticed that 29% of the time they didn’t link back to my site.

If you continually do guest posts and link back to your site, it will hurt you in the long run. Google knows what link percentages are natural, and if you don’t fit within that range, I think, it will hurt you.

Solution: Don’t always link back to your site. Write great content because you want to educate people and share what you have learned. This should also help improve the ratio of sites that mention you and link to you to the sites that mention you and don’t link back.


Some of the changes I mentioned above may not happen in Penguin 2.0, but they are the ones I think will be in the algorithm update. If they aren’t, I personally feel Google will eventually implement them.

What other changes do you see Google making with Penguin 2.0?


  1. Awesome Neil, really nice and informative!

    • Make Money Online :

      Thanks @Neil, Once Again Great Article.

      You Are Rock.

      • Good One, better Than last one @Neil

        Keep Blogging and Keep Helping Like Me.

      • Glad I could help ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Quick Shift pro is the latest site for human life If you visit the sit then you will find many interesting things.I hope that every man like to earn easily if you want to earn easily then I will say you that you can visit the Quick shift pro-2.I am sure that you must be success.I have a site that is Quick shift pro-2
        but your site is very strong so i want to visit your site every day and please every body visit the site.

    • Glad you found it helpful.

  2. Amir @ Blue Mile Media :

    This is great information. I love guest blogging and I know lots of people are worried about it being de-valued. But I agree with your points 100%. Nowadays, there’s so many sites that accept guest blogs that they might as well be link farms.

    The best way (roughly) to see if a site is good to guest post on is to forget about SEO and think whether it would help your site if SEO didn’t exist.


    • Amir, love that last point. Sometimes people try to cater to SEO too much and they forget why they are writing.

  3. Awesome actionable strategies on how to use guest posting as a tool –not your entire SEO or business model.

    One thing I’d add is to make sure that you’re guest posting on niche relevant sites as often as possible. On a lot of internet marketing related sites I see guest bios likes this:

    Jane is an internet marketing expert who works for Mike’s Roofing Company.

    Obviously, they link to that roofing company in the bio.

    In my opinion, relevancy is one way Google will differentiate between quality and spammy guest posting.

    • Brian, like these points. They are definitely spot on!

    • Quick Shift pro is the latest site for human life If you visit the sit then you will find many interesting things.I hope that every man like to earn easily if you want to earn easily then I will say you that you can visit the Quick shift pro-2.I am sure that you must be success.I have a site that is Quick shift pro-2
      but your site is very strong so i want to visit your site every day and please every body visit the site.

  4. Good points on this article Neil. I especially agree with where you write “When picking a site to guest blog on, make sure to pick one that doesnรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt link out to spammy sites and one that is highly relevant”…I have learned that one the hard way.

    Thanks for sharing as always.

  5. Michael Sodano :

    Very interesting post, lots to consider.

  6. Henneke | Enchanting Marketing :

    Good post, Neil. I agree with your focus on good content.

    I’d also say that when selecting a blog for guest posting, one should consider the audience. Will a blog send relevant traffic to your website? If yes, then it’s probably a good target for you.

    Guest posting should be less about link building and more about building authority, networking with influencers, and reaching out to your target audience. The best guest blogging policy is Google-proof.

    • Henneke, these are all terrific points. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Thanks Neil. I’m about to put out some guest posts.

    • Awesome, hopefully you follow the guidelines ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Quick Shift pro is the latest site for human life If you visit the sit then you will find many interesting things.I hope that every man like to earn easily if you want to earn easily then I will say you that you can visit the Quick shift pro-2.I am sure that you must be success.I have a site that is Quick shift pro-2
        but your site is very strong so i want to visit your site every day and please every body visit the site.

  8. Kumar Gauraw :


    This is a very informative proactive update coming from you. I think you have indicated some valid points and it’s better to be careful about them regardless of Google coming up with them in Penguine 2.0 or not.

    Thank you for sharing.


  9. Hmm.. Sounds interesting ๐Ÿ™‚ Neil your posts are always awesome! ๐Ÿ™‚ Google can also roll out another update based on social media spam ๐Ÿ˜‰ How about naming it Polar Bear Update?

  10. Umair Maqsood :

    Great Points Neil. I was doing Guest Blogging for a Company and they asked me to post their posts on different niches. I told them that Google won’t weight them and they will hurt your website in the long term but the company insisted on doing that. What happened after 6 months was that Google banned their website and they lost their rankings and traffic significantly. People try to implement these rules without being fair to Google.

    • I think people like to think they know what they are doing and often overlook simple past evidence. Sorry to hear that.

  11. Marvin from SEO Group :

    Hi Neil,

    When do you think Penguin 2.0 will occur?

  12. Neil Hi

    Great post as always. I agree that focusing on who is sharing a post will be most important than social count but I don’t see this coming just yet. I am sure this is where they (Google) want to go but if you think about it, it’s very complex (in their already complex algos) to identify who is sharing what and apply that to a ranking algorithm. They have the G+ data but what about twitter and FB, how can they tell exactly who is an influencer without relying solely on numbers…I know it’s a huge topic for discussion and I agree that things will change with penguin 2.0…


  13. Great post Neil

    One thing that came out of number 4 for me is that as well as writing ‘traditional’ guest posts with links back to your site – you could also write a guest post with no links to your site – then socially share it on the other person’s site with your own accounts as per number 1.

    This means you’d still be raising the authority and profile of your brand and work – even if everything you put out there doesn’t necessarily link back to your site.

    Google will still pick up your brand ‘name drop’ if it’s backed by enough authority – including your own.

    Hope that makes sense ๐Ÿ™‚



  14. Neil,

    Thanks for this.

    Good reminders that going forward, Strong relationships with influencers and quality content will rule the world.

    Here’s to your dominating the future…

  15. Sameer Viraj :

    Once again, a very nice article. Thanks for sharing the insight Neil.

  16. Zulhilmi Zainudin :

    Thank you Neil for sharing your opinion about co-citation. Before this, all my guest posts link back to my blog which I think that will bring me some benefits in SEO.

    After reading this, I learned something. ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Andrea Hypno :

    Another update. And another drop in traffic obviously. I hope it will benefit good content and authors but the little devil inside my head goes on and on telling me “as usual top dogs with big wallets won’t be affected”.

    Right or not do we really want content to be monopolized by big players? Which not always have the best content or tell the truth on things? Or to have content bieberized?

    Thanks for the heads up Neil, let’s hope this update is to make things better or that surfers quit using Google. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Andrea, I understand your concerns. I hope it works out for everyone. Also, love the reference to “bieberization” … lets hope it never comes to that!

  18. Venchito Tampon :

    Relevancy and quality is a must in guest posting. ๐Ÿ™‚
    You always say this – write for users not for search engines.

    Thanks Neil.

  19. I practiced all in your list about 2 years ago, and then left my news blog unattended for about a year now, and yet the ranking and pagerank are still good, so yeah, I definitely agree with you.

  20. I can definitely see abuse in the future of guest blogging. I am sure these and other implementations are in place or in the works to combat that abuse.

  21. I love how this piece has absolutely no basis for the following claims it is passing off as facts:

    1. That bio line links somehow count for less (we don’t know this, and while we’d love to speculate as such it’s dangerous to paint with this broad a brush without anything to point to this other than gut instinct)

    2. That Google absolutely weighs the shares/likes on a piece (we have studies suggesting this, but it is far from proven fact. All we know is that they’ve come out and said G+ will definitely have an impact)

    3. That follower count is somehow harder to mimic/fake that likes/shares and would make a better weighting scheme (they wouldn’t)

    4. That Google will arbitrarily devalue anchor text rich links within the (oddly specific) first two paragraphs of a piece. What on earth are you basing this conjecture on, Neil?

    5. “Author Rank” doesn’t actually exist yet, so to say it’s “being used” is incorrect.

    6. That websites “constantly linking out” to another site will be penalized (there are several plausible instances where this is not only natural but smart behaviour)

    7. The myth of the “relevant” website: bloggers may write on any number of subjects. A humor blog might write about dog tutus, utility bills, celebrities, bananas, organic foods and more. HOW, exactly, is Google supposed to determine whether or not a site is relevant when in reality sites do not cleanly fall into cut and dried “niches” just as often as they do!?

    8. The bizarre conjecture that you need to be getting mentioned with NO link because this is somehow more “natural” behavior. Again, you have nothing to base this on. Co-citations might be another great factor in “normalizing” a back link profile, but to suggest that you’ll be penalized on these grounds is absurd.

    This is a bunch of darts thrown in the dark and passed off as facts. Your readers deserve a whole lot better.

    The arrogance/foolishness in saying “Google WILL implement them” is absurd in its own right.

    • Speculation is always a part of the capitalist business model:)

    • You make good points Joel. Not all of the data is proven, but some is. Matt Cutts has stated before that they do take social signals into account… not just Google +.

      As for author links, I’ve seen how they don’t carry much weight from tests. Same with other SEOs… we have a group that shares data with each other.

      As for follower count, I meant fake users tweeting your stuff versus real ones.

      I’ve actually seen that when you shove rich anchor text link in the first paragraph or two, it doesn’t hold as much weight. A lot of spammers have been doing this lately with infographic submissions on

      As for linking out to the same website multiple times, you make a good point there.

      As for relevancy, I would have to say that they have a very sophisticated algo that can actually determine it. The easiest way for them to determine is based on a sites rankings. If a site about “forex” that ranks in the top 100 for that keyword links to your forex site, it holds much more weight… even if that forex site talks about other forms of trading.

    • You have to see the bigger picture Joel. Nobody has the actual facts on the Google algorithm. You have to take a balance of practical SEO experience over the years and blend it with what you think Google will do to maintain its position as the top provider of search results. Neil says some forward thinking things here, sure, but someone has to. And he has the experience and knowledge to back up his thoughts. Welcome to the future.

  22. My opinions on guest posting and overall SEO strategies have always been the same.

    Just create good content and if you have a reader base, you will get links and it leads to automatic SEO.

    Guest posting should definitely be done in moderation and not solely for the purpose of getting a backlink, but from the perspective of getting traffic from your niche.

    That’s why I believe guest blogging should ONLY be done on authoritative blogs in your niche.

    Lovely post Neil, been following your blog for a long time now.

    I’ll get in touch someday. I feel we have a lot in common ๐Ÿ˜›

  23. Great post. Can use some grammar correction. Great nevertheless.

  24. Neil

    The title of the post says These changes WILL happen with Penguin…

    Then in the conclusion

    “Some of the changes I mentioned above may not happen in Penguin 2.0”

    Which is it? Or are you just shoving disinformation?

    • I should have been more careful with the title… sorry about that.

      I have no way to prove they will do this, but that’s what my hunch is telling me.

  25. I love Google. I use it myself every single day to find what I need but when it comes to SEO I think they make things way too complicated. I feel sorry for anyone wanting to start up a small business that doesn’t have a budget to use an SEO company, they have no chance!

    • Lojix, I think that is why it is essential for some people to their own due diligence. I understand the difficulties though.

  26. Great insight Neil.

    What I believe is writing great content is the most important element in blogging.

    You are true inspiration.

    Amrik Virdi

  27. Mash Bonigala :

    Great post Neil! Simple and to the point. It is a pity that guest blogging is next on Google radar since it is a nice way to get quality content on one’s blogs. But you are right, if you stick to some rules, then you should have no worries.

    • Mash, great points. I think it’s important to listen to the daily updates coming out of the SEO scene to ensure rankings are maintained.

  28. Hey Neil. Very informative as always. One thing that really made me wonder is “how much people really would not link back to his own blog after doing a guest post”

    And just think, if I get an opportunity to write a guest post in Quick Sprout!!!

    I am never going to leave the opportunity to get the link!
    I am BEING HONEST Neil

    • Koj, I think sometimes people overlook the importance of doing so…or they are simply not mindful of what works.

  29. Shrewdd Marketing :

    Excellent post Neil. I guess social signals will go through the same kind of scrutiny everything else has to go through!

  30. Jay Samolowicz :

    With Google, it seems like its just boiling down to “be helpful.” Be helpful and promote yourself naturally. The days of marketers and SEOers gaming the system are coming to an end.

    Awesome post Neil.

  31. Unlike a few others who posted above, I have no qualms about looking at “maybes,” “ifs”, and “possibles”.

    Being able to discern the future is hardly an exact science. Those willing to do so make as significant a contribution to forward progress as those who can dissect the present with strong precision.

    For example, I think mobile search many not be as huge as some folks are predicting. I base it not on facts, but on speculation. How much sooner are those using their thumbs more repetitively than ever before going to suffer medical problems like carpal tunnel and arthritis? And how is the small screen going to affect the next generation’s level of eyesight? Is this going to lead to a throwback to bigger screens?

    I raise such points for one reason. I prefer to assess seemingly valid possibilities on my own, using critical thinking, rather than to simply discard all new thoughts because they lack statistical-type studies. (And that’s a weird proposition, since statistics and the parameters of a study can be manipulated.)

    Keep up the free thinking and good writing, Neil.

    • Carlos, great points. I think one should always be skeptical and make up their own assumptions and base their logic not necessarily on what is happening (or has happened) . Sometimes intuition can go a long way towards prudent thinking.

  32. A new blogging era is going to begin, Its true that whenever a method becomes common in blogging, google changes the algo

  33. Yassin Madwin :

    This is the first Time I have to disagree with you Neil.

    In Ideal World. Google can do that. What reality says is that you can slay anyone buying links. I created a website 7 days ago. it’s now first. When You have a nerd mathematics friend you don’t get penalized we anticipate what Google will do, What spammers are doing. come with a backlink strategy and there you go.

    Why every respectable SEOer or Blogger try to label himself as “white haty”. For me SEO has no colors. Google hates all kinds of SEO because you should earn links not building them

  34. Greg Bardwell :

    All good advise for sure. Bottom line seems just do good content for content marketing purposes and not try to game or continually “optimize” for the continually changing Google. I never worry too much about links, I just try to niche my content as much as possible. And let the links be natrual as much as possible.

  35. Utkarsh Bhatt :

    Great article, but also somewhat depressing. ๐Ÿ™ I need to get all my blogging stuff done if I want to survive the game.

  36. Very well articulated article mate. I thought for the moment – “Yes! exactly. That’s the way it has to work.” – while reading points such as Devaluing sites and links. Co-citation is something that really needs to be taken care of.

    Great article buddy. Will research and take care of these points as Penguin 2.0 gets near.

  37. Chris von Nieda :


    As always timely good advice. Several times now it seems I am sitting at my desk contemplating a project, client situation or service and I glance in my inbox and see something from you perfectly relevant to my situation.

    Keep up the awesome work!

  38. Shelly-Ann Roper :

    Tiring isn’t it, keeping up with the algorithms and their fickle likes and dislikes. Good that we have blogs like quicksprout to keep us on our toes. Thanks guys, keep it coming ๐Ÿ˜‰

  39. Great post–as usual, Neil.

    (Thanks for spending a few minutes on the phone with me last year)

    Allow me to toot my horn for a quick minute.

    I get tons of PR. Lots of major web properties call me and email me because I’m a trusted authority on franchising. I’ve worked hard…for a long time to make sure that I speak the truth about my industry and that i don’t spin or lie. And, because of that, I’m trusted.

    I’ve noticed something lately; some of the reporters and writers that are calling on me for my observations and tips won’t link out to me…and, I’m offended. I’m angry.

    I consider it proper internet etiquette to do link out to someone who’s providing value to readers. (I always do) I’ve even been known to link to competitors of mine in the franchise space.

    Why won’t some of the sites that have 6,000,000 inbound links show a little appreciation and link to their sources?

    It’s wrong.



    The Franchise Kingร‚ยฎ

  40. Whenever new algorithms came up we need to change to our strategy too. Before i was rank based on social shares myself i’m SMO if we get good tweet, fb shares and G+1 votes we will rank on Google 1st page. But now it’s now working :(. After reading your article i need follow different strategy to survive in this blogging field.

  41. Adam Gottlieb :

    All these points are *so* important (regardless of whether or not they will be included in “Penguin 2.0”). It amazes me how many bloggers and business owners trying to market their business online just don’t get it.

  42. Neil I must say that you have done a great work in this your post, like you said in your conclusion that some of this might not be implemented but you have really showed me how not to guest post. Thanks for the share.

  43. Hi Neil. Great Article ๐Ÿ™‚

  44. Hey Neil,
    Glad I got this while on your list. I know the next update was going to be geared towards guest posting as it’s being abused already

  45. cosmetice online :

    Great article! That is very informative for my future tasks. But it will be difficult to meet all the requirements. Anyway, I will do what I can to keep my ranking.

  46. Brandy Anderson :

    This is awesome! I read tons of articles about SEO, and much of this has not yet been discussed on other blogs at all. I thought the co-citations thing in particular was really interesting.

    Regarding author rank, is there a way to set up two (or more) author associations with a blog? For example, there are two of us writing our company blog, but only one of us has established Google authorship with it. We can’t seem to figure out how to add the other — any thoughts or resources you can point me toward for that? Thanks!

    • Yes you can. You should all connect your Google Plus account with the individual posts you’ve written. This should solve the problem.

  47. Hi Neil,

    Another great post! I’m just re-starting (again) and have learned that if people spend their time doing things the “right” way instead of what could almost be considered black hat methods, they would be waaaay ahead of the game. Then they would have no room to complain and nit-pick.
    Also appreciate the humility of a person (you) who can read the criticism aimed at him, and look at it objectively. Then dissect it, re-examine what he wrote, and admit he should have done this, that, or the other thing different.
    Keep up the good work.

  48. Jeff Goodwin :


    Great article and measured opinion on how the next Penguin update might affect SEO. Obviously, social media will play into it, although I’m not sure how Google will determine the metrics fairly at this point.

    You’re spot on about creating content with the consumer in mind. If the content is geared towards providing a useful user experience, then in the end, content creators don’t need to fear negative consequences from algorithm updates.

    • Jeff, great points. Social metric monitoring is still in it’s infancy in terms of having a good sense of what they are doing.

  49. Awesome post as usual! I am curious about number 1. While I agree that they need to take authority and affinity into consideration I am a little hesitant to believe they have a good way to verify all the things we would consider indicators without further allowing people to game the system.

    • Jon, great point. If I understand correctly they have a number of processes in place to gauge how much one is gaming the system.

  50. I like the “mentions” vs. “links back” thought. Not sure if they are actually doing this, but I think it makes a lot of common sense.

  51. Donny Gamble :

    Instead of pointing a link back to your website within your guest post, a great strategy is point a link back to one of your social profiles like google+, facebook, LinkedIn, or twitter. Not only will this help you increase your author rank and influence, but it is also a great way to increase your social following from the readers of the blog that you are guest posting on.

  52. Saurabh Saha :

    Thanks Neil for these helpful tips.
    I have recently started guest blogging on my site. As my site’s reputation is quiet high so I am getting 10+ Guest Article Request Daily. But I think, I should limit articles by Guest Contributors as people love to read my articles more than that of Guest Contributors.

  53. Julie Harris :

    Guest blogging is a helpful tool in SEO and it does not require to spend a lot of money. All you have to do is create good content. Nice post as always Neil. ๐Ÿ™‚

  54. Neil,

    How do you know all of that? Do you work in Google search team?

  55. Though well written, lot of this is hypothetical and may not really happen in Penguin 2.0 or later. If google starts tweaking their engines too much, there may be a ‘google revolt’ where people will stop using google in the near future. As for the content, do not just look for your primary customers who directly benefit from your services, but also secondary vistitors who may provide word of mouth advertising for your site and may know your primary customer.

  56. Very informative site and well written post. If we start reading your Neil, your posts push us to read everything even comments. I have effeminately learnt something very useful.

  57. Awesome Post, this is really nice and grate information. Thanks Neil.

  58. Zoรƒยซ Dawes :

    Extremely useful tips Neil. Your article was recommended in a FB group of Travel Bloggers. We’re keen to develop good protocol and know how to work with others for a win-win. Your comments are a really simple summary and especially useful to me as I don’t really do much SEO in my articles. I focus much more on sharing my love of writing and travel. This is quite encouraging – and helpful as I occasionally do guest posts for others and take guest posts on The Quirky Traveller. As some of my spammy blog comments say “I’ll be following your great blog from now on!”

    • Zoe, glad I could reach out to you. Thanks for reading and please feel free to reach out if you need any help ๐Ÿ™‚

  59. Was compelled to comment for the first time Neil.

    You state the obvious in such a clear way


  60. So they’re going to clamp down on Guestblogs, they said that about article cr@p and guess what, people still rank using just that.

    Too many anchor text links will hurt you, go and share a url on Google + and see what the link text is – it’s the meta tag title of your page which quite often is partial match keywords.

    Google guidelines – just what is the point in following them anymore? You follow them, they then alter them = you’re screwed.

    Google have no idea what they are doing anymore.

    • Karl, great points. I think the point about the guidelines is very true. We just have to try out best to work by the rules.

  61. Hey Neil,

    Knowing the future of guest blogging from you really sounded so “legendary”. No wonder you’re a big deal. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for reminding us that guest blogging is not just about links but about what makes you a great and competitive blogger.


  62. Rebekka Deforce :

    Great post as always!

    I think it’s a good evolution. Rank the people high that really give value, and not the ones who use the trickiest methods to get a lot of backlinks.

  63. Link Building :

    Buying social shares on fiverr and buying any other short cut links have never been useful. Instead they have worsen the situation.

  64. Penguin is an idea that can really make bloggers and web masters nervous. The points explained here are very straight and easy to understand. Thanks Neil.

  65. I have a very large multi-author blog with over 2000 posts. One of the biggest problems that I’ve seen over the last two years is that Google devalued internal links. With a large site, we used to be able to rank very well for almost any keyword phrase simply by creating a massive number of internal links with plugins such as SEO Smart links.
    At this point in time, social signals seem to be overrated. Our site tends to get pretty strong social signals–massive in some cases (i.e. recent post about sprinting vs running had 1.4k FB likes/641 LinkedIn shares), but very little in terms of external backlinks. The posts with even massive social signals don’t generate more search traffic than the ones that don’t.
    In fact, I have one post on my personal domain about natural arthritis remedies. It has 700+ FB likes, 250 Google +, and 250 retweets. What’s interesting is that this post gets almost zero search traffic and is past page 3 on relevant keyword searches.
    The other perplexing issues is with duplicate / low quality content. I have an editor account at topix dot com. This domain is so strong it’s basically immune to massive amounts of low quality/duplicate content.

    • Jarret, I see what you are saying now. Interesting scenario. I would say continue to promote valuable content and test out your performance over time.

  66. Sorry as an addendum, the FB likes are legit–we had a spike of 13k FB referrals per day for about 5 days on that one sprinting vs. jogging post. Yet, FB traffic is like how Stumble or Digg traffic used to be back in the day–big spike then nothing.

  67. Hi Neil,
    Really informative post as always.
    As I am in seo field and recently I read an article related to future of seo. So, I just want to ask what do you think about future of SEO?
    means, it will works in future or not?


    • Vivek, I think SEO is alive and well. Keep doing what you are doing ๐Ÿ™‚

      • The Official QuickShiftPro Facebook page is up and running! Stay tuned for further details as we get closer to the launch of QSP! Your support means a tremendous amount!I have a site like your site because I think that your blog site is very strong so i want to apply T quick Quick Shift pro-2
        link beside your link.I want to visit your site every day.

  68. Hi Neil,

    Awesome post. However, I donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt really think the following should be of any concern:

    In addition to that, Google will most likely look at if you yourself are sharing your own guest posts on your own social profiles. Because if you arenรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt willing to tweet or like your own guest post, the chances are you didnรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt write a great post

    Sharing stuff on oneร‚ยดs own social profiles might make that post rank higher because its one (or more) additional link pointing at the post, and itรขโ‚ฌโ„ขs a link from a social profile with a real network รขโ‚ฌโ€œ makes sense this should give some weight. However, the though that search engines should give less credit to a post because the author didnรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt share it on his own social profiles sounds like a foolish assumption to me. รขโ‚ฌล“SEO junkiesรขโ‚ฌย would probably consider it ludicrous to not share stuff on personal social profiles, but I am sure lots of people donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt really see any link between what has been posted and their social profiles รขโ‚ฌโ€œ even with content you are proud of.

    Sharing it on personal social profiles, can very likely give a boost, SEO wise. However, I donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt think search engines intentionally will give you less credit if you donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt share it because this might indicate you didnรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt write a great postรขโ‚ฌยฆ

    • Jake,
      Thanks for the additional points. You bring up some valid points and I agree in general. Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚

  69. Larry Waight :

    Great post Neil. To win in this Penguin update you have to write compelling content that people will share, if you do not do that you will fail.

    Totally agree with the following point:

    Write great content that you can be proud ofรขโ‚ฌยฆ so proud that youรขโ‚ฌโ„ขll share it on your own social profiles.


    • Larry, great additional points. You definitely need to post compelling content to get some eyes on your site.

  70. Google is sure to improve search drastically over time, a good thing for users.

  71. Myhox Network :

    Hi Neil !
    Thank you for sharing great tips. There some high PR blog has already stopped guest blogging. What is the key reason behind it? Does guest blogging negative effects on site?
    However guest blogging is the best ways to keep a blog regular update and make it creative.

    • Each has their own reason… I am not sure why they stopped.

      It doesn’t really have negative effects if you do it right. I wish I still did it, I just don’t have the time anymore.

  72. Alex Mitchell :

    wonderful article! VERY insightful as to what’s “coming down the pipe” from Google. Its not just about posting on social media sites, its about the interaction with your audience that really matters. Its time to start shifting gears a little BEFORE Google comes down with the next big hammer.

  73. Neil,

    This is some really great information. I’m going to have to re-think many of our sites, and probably rework some of them. :-((

    At the risk of sounding a little “out of the loop” (which I am, apparently), I have to humbly admit that I didn’t know of the existence of Penguin 2.0. I’ve been in the hospital for quite a while, and only recently was discharged. Now, I’m frantically trying to catch up on things, and your site was one of the first I visited.

    How many updates have happened since the original Penguin, and where can I read more about them?

  74. Alex Zagoumenov :

    Neil, this is another great one! A couple of points:

    Do I need to may more attention to my blog comments then. I get a lot of “anchor junk” comments on my personal blog, some of them are relevant, but most of them are not. I do delete the irrelevant ones though. But does Panda 2.0 mean that it will punish me as a publisher for occasional spammy-looking comments?

    I guess that a fair advice would be to stop commenting on the blogs for the link’s sake. I can still see a lot of that happening both on my blog and blogs I respect and read regularly. Has Google already devalued links from comments on blogs?

    Thanks again!

    • I don’t think you have to worry about blog comment anchors as they are nofollowed typically.

      Yes, Google has devalued comment links a long time ago. ๐Ÿ™‚

  75. Margaux Allen @ capping machines :

    Hi Neil,

    I am new with reading to your post. I am just so glad I’ve found this as I learn a lot on how guest blogging will be affected with the latest changes in Google. From the last blog I’ve read, I am somehow convinced to engage in guest blogging, but after reading your post it manages to alter my decision. I think I just need more time and research to finally make up my mind. Thank you so much Neil. Will read more of your work! ๐Ÿ™‚

  76. Bharat Lohakare :

    An simple and sweet post which has increased my knowledge of Penguin 2.0.

  77. Hello Neil,

    great post as always. But I would like to get off topic just a little bit here and tell you that I really like what you did with the yellow “solution” sections of your post.

    A really nice approach I think! Personally, I clicked on all the links I found in those sections!

    Very nice copy-writing practice: neat and clean, it stands out from the rest, with high CTR links I assume.

    I will also try to incorporate this in my next blog post.


  78. I am very careful before i post any blog post.These tips could be part of the penguin update but even if they don’t include some of the points i think its generally good to always write for the masses and readers rather than pushing the PR of your websites.People will eventually like your content together with google. But the shortcuts will always get busted with time or even fail to work sometimes.Thanks Neil am glad to be following your websites.You have tonnes of advice everytime

  79. More and more site owner are using guest posting to gain advantage in Google ranking. I already see some SEO company start offering service and charge per guest post. Soon Google will have to do something about this as well, having said that I will do what still work now.

  80. Neil,

    Another awesome post, I think the last point you made is very very interesting: “Donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt always link back to your site.”

    Either way it will be very interesting to see what google does next.

    It is a shame that so many people fear them this much ๐Ÿ™

    If i do a guest it is to put myself and blog out there to share with others. now soon if I mention in every post i could be negatively affected ๐Ÿ™

    • Brian, it’s true. Sometimes you just want to provide valuable information without having the string of a link back attached.

  81. Katharine @ Phone Repairs :

    Informative post as always Neil, this could be very useful for me as I do guest blogging. Great tips!

  82. Neil

    This post is amazing, I Love The Author rank section it better for me


  83. Connor Harley :

    Great information here regarding the penguin update. Since Panda has been completely done, looks like it penguin’s turn to strike.

  84. vet in Tampa :


    Thanks for the detailed explanations you have provided here.

    Now here is what some might consider to be a radical thought: Guest blogging is very over-rated. And as you have pointed out, due to its being massively abused, and used primarily as a way of gaining links rather than publishing good content, it may be in for some radical changes.

    At the same time, the difficulty is that there is one massive company who considers themselves the kings of the internet (I’m sure you and everyone knowledgeable reading this knows who that is = “g”). That is a situation that is very unhealthy and completely against the public interest.

    g does NOT own the internet, yet they try to do whatever possible to control it. You personally Neil have not been hurt at all by them because you do publish quality content on a regular basis, yet there are many honest people who are not as famous as you (and maybe not famous at all) who have in fact done nothing wrong and suddenly one day wake up to find that some “update by g” has resulted in their site no longer being a top search result.

    A very large number of people have already said from 2 or 3 years ago that the quality of search results provided by g has significantly declined over this period. Now of course it would be very surprising if you were to agree at all with that, but personally I rarely use them anymore for search and have instead switched to a competitor.

    And I am someone who it would not be accurate to describe as a black hat search optimizer either.

    Yes, it is important for our businesses to consider and even speculate as to what changes and “updates” the evil “g” might in the future make.

    But to live and work in constant fear of them and to in fact behave in a manner which reinforces their self-presumed kingship of the internet is not healthy for the public interest.

    The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has already investigated anti-trust claims against the company, and likely will do so in the future. At the very least, g and their updates in the guise of making search “better” (which, as mentioned, reality is exactly the opposite for at least the last 2 to 3 years) have contributed to the number of people experiencing tough economic times no less than the financial crisis/crash of 2008.

    They started out as a company with a motto to “do no evil”, but have lost their way so badly that now their behavior is the opposite of their original intention.

    And like all others who behave haughtily, they to will fall unless they improve their behavior.

    • Great points. You are right, quality content is essential. There a lot of people out there peddling disinformation and duplicate content. What this does is create an atmosphere where we have information overload.

  85. Hei Neil,
    Its been over 5 months now I have been following your guidelines and SEO tips , silently , without making a buzz or asking any question or even thanking you for so much important SEO tips you share . Hence my apologies,I should have been interactive and now I wish to thank you for all those precious tips and techniques you share. You deserve to be where you are , honestly !! I had a request for writing a guest post hence I thought I should better ask you? The site is new but looks promising and they want me to do a guest post. I have never done it before.Should I ?
    Secondly, my website is hosted on and I have 100s of errors(on SeoMoz Dashboard) indicating duplicate contents . Can you please suggest how can I get rid of these errors ? I look forward for your cooperation !! Thanks a ton.

    • Thanks for joining the conversation. I would suggest going through and doing a quick WP site audit. There are a lot of plugins that can help you do this.

      • Neil , but as I explained my site is hosted on !they do not allow any plugins there !!

        • Sam McRoberts :

          Don’t use ๐Ÿ™‚ Self-hosted WordPress installations are the only way to go. There’s no sense building a presence on, as you’ll have a hard time monetizing or branding if that’s ever your intention.

          You need to be on a platform that gives you more control.

  86. Myhox Network :

    Hi Neil !
    Thank you for sharing another excellent posts regarding Guest blogging. I really motivated from your content writing skills.

  87. Thanks for this post and great information here about the penguin update

  88. Jignesh Rathod (TechForWorld) :

    To me, guest blogging looks like articles written by so many known/unknown authors for selfish purpose of link-building only.
    (Pure reader/audience’s point of view, not blogger’s)

    Such blogs fail to connect a visitor’s heart like personalized, one-many army blogs like Quick Sprout do. Personalized blogs establish a brand name and certain attitude like “I’m kind of a big deal.”

    Thank you Neil, keep the great work up. And so happy to see you write more frequently on QS.

  89. Jignesh Rathod (TechForWorld) :

    * one-man army

  90. Gerald Weber :

    I can’t agree with you more regarding the “social spam” in instances like Fiverr!

    I think it makes much more sense to look at the people who are Tweeting or sharing via social.

    Who cares if hundreds of bot accounts are tweeting your content. No actual human eyeballs will come across you account as a result.

  91. Very informative post Sir. Thank you for educating me about SEO and Penguin 2.0, today and onward I will careful about guest blogging.

  92. Thanks for the points Neil. really helped me learned some good ideas which i should keep in mind when posting on other blogs to build links. As you have mentioned do not link always to our site, I’m wondering if it’s bad to even comment leaving my name and site URL on the sites I read? for example like I’m doing right now on your site.
    If Google is going think this as bad thing started penalizing the sites what would would you advice Neil?

    This is one of most readable blogs on the web to learn tin of SEO and online marketing knowledge. Must have been sharing every post I read. Thanks for the great content.

    • Don’t worry about comment links, they are nofollowed so you are fine.

      Glad you like the blog Fernando.

  93. All good points, but #3 and 4 are definitely noticeable for me.

    I have one site where I began offering guest posts. The results weren’t good… I lost over 20% of my traffic previous to the guest posts. And, these were good quality 700+ words of unique content.

    So, in other words, with guest posts, I’m receiving less traffic with more content. Hopefully, this is a temporary thing… can’t be too sure with Google’s complex algo.

    • Steve, yeah hopefully. You should check to see if the content was duplicate or if any of the tags were off.

  94. Neil,

    I really appreciated your focus on creating content and providing resources that benefit your readers. Too often it seems people get into the blogging game with the sole aim of Internet fame and fortune. Now, I’m not saying that there’s anything wrong with fame and fortune. But if that’s your only goal, how is it helping anyone?

    Thanks for providing value. =) This is the first post of yours that I’ve read. Look forward to learning more about you and your work!


    • Nikki, thanks. I try to provide the best information that is out there. I find putting it all together in a concise manner goes a long way.

  95. I have visited the blog for the first time and I find the post pretty interesting. Guest post is where people used to spam without going for smart work. I like the way you implemented present and future scenario. Specially, Author ran, people used to think it helps positively but it can also harm if once your id get devalued and it can be serious penalty

  96. raman bathina :

    Yes recently i also capture some articles on Facebook about buying likes,tweets for less amount of money.I think it’s not right thing.The advanced seo guide with infographics is easily understandable.

  97. Thank You Mr Niel, Very helpful and creative article on Google updates and some future valuation of or sites backlinking.

  98. Naven @ Guest Posting Service :

    Wonderful overview about how people abuse search engines by paying for links to get 1st position. I think Google will improve its system and penalize those site which has un-natural link patterns.

    Thanks to the wonderful post.

  99. Thanks for sharing those stats Neil, a lot of bloggers wouldn’t dream of making something like that public. I appreciate it.I have a lot on my plate right now with restarting an old blog but guest posting is way up near the top of the list!!

  100. Google should start ignoring social signals…even if they will start using the influence of an person who shares the article still the spam will continue….i have seen lots of people on seoclerks(having thousands of real followers) who are ready to tweet your link just at $1.

  101. Innocent Sikhosana :

    As you said it is getting much more difficult to even get a response from blog owners because they are getting bombarded with emails about guest blogging everyday. Could it be that this will be the next cold calling? ๐Ÿ™‚

  102. Interesting bit about co-citations. That’s really how things worked for Local SEO for so long, there wasn’t always a link back. Never thought of it.. good point.
    I agree with the one commenter who mentioned not considering SEO. I personally guest post on blogs that I read myself and want to share some info to their audience. The SEO effects are just side-benefits.

  103. Great post, Neil.

    I’m however confused about something.

    Let’s say a multi-author blog which accepts guest posts on a regular basis.

    Normally, in cases like this, if you have say 10 guest authors who regularly submit guest posts on an authoritative blog, what happens then ?

    Since you’re accepting posts from the same authors , you’re only linking to a handful of sites especially in the author bio section and the comment section because of all the replies.

    Will the site get penalized for that ?

    • Assuming the content is really high in quality, I don’t think a site will. The content quality is really the key because good content will get more social shares and links.

  104. Sourabh Rana from crystal travel :

    Hello Neil,

    I am a big fan of yours following you on FB & everywhere. Yes, Guest blogging is the important part of internet marketing what people can’t ignore now days. but the changing ERA of Google threatened the webmasters for this technique even.

    This guide is just focusing on the quality of Content of blog. Yes, Fully agree that Author Rank is now playing very vital role in ranking the blog articles.

    But the surprise package in these days is Co-Citation links. This is changing the game of SEO & link building from the back stage.

    I would like to read few explained posts on topics how to create author rank for website, blog 2) The power of co-citation in seo.

    Thanks Neil
    sourabh rana

    • Glad you find the information useful. Thanks for your continued reading. Please let me know know if you need help with anything in the future ๐Ÿ™‚

  105. Enjoyed the post Neil. At the very least some interesting ideas on what may happen down the road. I’m not convinced though that Penguin 2.0 is going to obliterate guest blogging as we know it. Google will definitely address it at some point but I don’t think it’s going to be in one fell swoop that they get it right. Thus, guest blogging will still be used as it is currently but *real* guest posting, due to its sustainability, should be the main focus of any link/relationship building activity imo.

    • Dustin, great points. I agree that it won’t completely obliterate guest posting. However, there will be some maneuvering that will have to be done to keep up to pace with changes.

  106. Hello Sir Great article and sir your article + your blog is very attractive i like it hmmm , Sir i want your help my adsence was disabled last week now i am not earning a single dollar please please give me some tips or other way to make money waiting for your positive response

  107. great points.

  108. Glad I could help ๐Ÿ™‚

  109. Great post ..

  110. Hello Neil,
    This is first time Im reading any of your post and today I allready read 3 or 4 of them.
    I own small website in Austria.Its site for taxi company so there is not really much to write about – we specialize in transfer to airport.

    Im thinking about creating facebook page, where I cant write about upcoming concerts in Vienna,restoraunts and places people like to visit, when traveling to Vienna, so people can comment and ask questions.
    Does that make any sense?

    ps. keep up the good work

    • Neil Patel :

      Filip, that totally makes sense. I think you are on the right path. Keep working hard and best of luck!

      • Thanks Neil.
        I would like to ask for another advice please.
        Mybe its beter to make blog on my website about upcoming events,… and just promote blog on facebook becouse that way I can get people to visit my blog,read and link to my blog.
        That way I could make some backlinks for my website.

        Thank you for your time Neil.

        • Upcoming events are always great. It helps people see what you are about to write about and anticipate the publish date.

  111. TouchOurlives :

    We can’t predict the constant changes of Google updates, but we understand the principle that it is the great content that invite natural links, viral social shares and votes, so the key is to focus on creating remarkable content and outreach strategies to diversify the traffic source and ultimately get to the top of Google in the long run .

    • Neil Patel :

      Definitely, that is half the the struggle. Getting great content up on your domain is essential.

  112. graphicfusiondesign :

    This is really a great information. I am so impressed to read your blog. This is very informative for all those people. I love guest blogging and I know lots of people are worried about it being de-valued. But I agree with your points 100%. Nowadays, there are so many sites that accept guest blogs that they might as well be link farms.

  113. Hi, Neil. Your post here is timely because I’m considering guest posting on a few blogs related to my topic.

    I noticed something. An author “guest blogged” on a site like Forbes, then posted the exact same article on his own blog after maybe a week. Another did the reverse: write on her blog, then publish the exact same thing as a guest blogger on another site after some time.

    Does that phenomenon have any impact, especially on the first scenario? Wouldn’t it make sense to publish said article on one’s blog first before maybe posting the same thing (word for word) on a guest blog, especially to establish authority/source of sorts?

    I guess I’m just concerned if doing that thing will negatively affect my site, if ever. Thanks for reading.


    PS I wish I discovered your blog sooner. Anywho, I’m steadily digesting the other posts to see what I can apply on my own site. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Neil Patel :

      Yes you are right. Ideally you should post first on your site so your website doesn’t contain the duplicate content. Then from Forbes you should ideally link back to the original.

  114. Hi Neil, Lots of users are facing problems after changes of Google with Penguin 2.0. I think you give some solution of some major problems, which is really great and helpful. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚ .

  115. Santanu Gupta :

    Hi Neil,

    Great post and all the points make great sense. One thing that I was wondering about is links from the author bio’s, I mean each time an author/blogger writes a post for a particular blog, he/she gets a link via author bio pointed towards his/her website/blog. If you write for a highly popular site like Search Engine Land you get a link each time you write a post for them and on the other hand if you write for a less known blog then also you get a link every time you write a post for them. And most important part is all these links come from same site and same IP address.

    So what do you suggest how Google treats these links? Do you think that links from Search Engine Land would always carry more value as it’s a highly popular blog, doesn’t matter if the links are from the same site and same IP address?

    I’d really appreciate your views on this Neil. Thanks so much for providing us with such great info every time. Wish you a great day!

    Santanu.. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I don’t think those links hurt you, but more so they don’t carry as much weight as links within the content.

      Search engines are smart and links you build to yourself probably don’t have as much weight as links coming from other people… naturally.

      • Santanu Gupta :

        Thanks very much for your reply Neil! This really clears the concept for concept. I really appreciate your expert thoughts! ๐Ÿ™‚

        One more thing that I’m confused about that, can a website that is banned by Google participate in the AdWords Program or Paid Search?

        Best Wishes,

        Santanu ๐Ÿ™‚

        • Santanu, sometimes they will place restrictions on websites. It all depends on what is going on with your restriction.

  116. Richard Migambi :

    Great article like always.

  117. Sunil Khale :

    Great article Neil. Always look forward to your posts.

    One question for you. What would you consider a better ploy – Writing a number of articles on a highly reputed blog or rather pushing your content on as many domains as possible? Assuming the article quality is high, I’m guessing the former gives better returns. Or does it just boil down to social shares after all.

    Keep writing!

    • I think the former is what one should aim for. It is best to make sure you are reaching out to as many people with high quality websites.

      • Sunil Khale :

        Thanks for the response Neil. It’s uncommon to see a Webmaster of your stature consistently responding to queries. Makes you that much cooler among your fans. Cheers!

  118. Well written article Neil. Sites that post irrelevant content really get to me, I’m glad to see that Penguin 2.0 is devaluing such. Cleaning up the web one website at a time! Thanks for writing this article, was a great read.

  119. Google is making the things more complicated day by day for webmasters.

  120. Haseeb Ahmad Ayazi :

    hmmmm Important Info for blogging

  121. Great points, when I write a guest post, so I need to get back link in post or in author bio ?

  122. GTA 5 Free Beta :

    Social signals are brilliant for ranking but the only problem is they need to be consistent otherwise you will dance in googles search engine i use social exchanges sites and drip feed signals.

  123. I think after this penguin 2.0,Google will give less importance for the links in the comments, of-course they are no-follow which doesn’t help in getting decent PR & author rank gonna be a new ranking factor means Google going to trust the author more than the blog…

  124. Great article,i was confused to add a category of Guest post or not.
    Thanks alot!

  125. srikar srinivasula :

    I agree with many of your points but implementing them won’t be as simple as it may sound, first off penalizing websites just because they have too much guest posts does not seem realistic as in one has to define how much is too much, then again if author byline is targeted it has to be implemented across the whole internet which would effect genuine and high profile authors, for example your’s on seomoz- but will that be right ?

    Then the social sharing thing, truth be told it would be quite complicated to determine fake retweets to real, say i have 20-30 friends in my gtalk who are regular twitter users and i ask them to retweet my latest article and they would, but was it natural ? NO but can Google catch it as spam ? I don’t think so.

    • 1. The over optimization or keyword stuffing anchor texts is where they will get you in the guest posts. Or if they are really bad quality and you are just cranking out them.

      2. As for the social shares, I think they can build algorithms to help them on that front. You can look for patterns, number of followers, how often they tweet or share stuff…

  126. i think if we diversify our link building strategies, then there is very slim chance of getting affected..Of course diversified links should not be spammy.I think if i base my link building strategy purely on guest blog, or articles or community content then some way or the other my ranking will take a hit. So i think diversified link building ( quality of course ) is the way forward and i have noticed that word press website are getting good value from google in terms of SERP..

    However i dont understand how author rating or value will have an effect. I understand where you are coming from but i doubt it..

    • Sam, great points. When I mention author rank I am talking about the quality and quantity of posts one puts out on Google Plus.

  127. Hi Neil

    You make some interesting points here, but I think that the tone of the article is very matter-of-fact for what essentially amounts to a collection of hypotheses and opinions. Unless you have statistically relevant case studies to backup your claims of what “will happen”, then it’s really just informed speculation. I’ve been guilty of this same thing, but I try to remember that I’m wisest when I remember that I actually know nothing at all.


    • Brian, I have case studies but I don’t tend to share them on the blog as they are often confidential. Great points though, one should always back up their claims.

  128. It continuously scares me to think what is next around the corner from Google. How has the web let all their eggs go in just the Google basket? When one entity controls the direction of the world wide web, it just does not seem fair. I can understand the desire for better content and value for viewers, and support it one hundred percent. What was once the frontier of internet based marketing is no longer that and more of a Mad Max world where you have to fight for the scraps of what is available out there. And why a Penguin update? What about the other living creatures? Why put the blame on penguins that inhabit such an isolated spot on the earth? Maybe that is why – because they are inaccessible to most people, kind of like the web is becoming to most people.

    • Dean, great points. A lot of what you say holds true and I agree. Google does have a lot of power and it is up to us to adapt and work with the updates they pump out. It’s a tough road ahead but I am sure we’ll adapt like we always have. As for the penguin, LOL that is true!

  129. Selidbe Beograd :

    @Neil: Even though what you wrote about Forbes’ linking to your site does make sense to me, I wonder what does Google consider to be natural linking. I’m not asking for the formula, because that’s nonsense, but just the main concept.

    @Dean: Love the comment about Google naming the update Penguin. You’ve made a point.

    • That’s a tough one. I think links from authority sites within content is the ideal link… but no one really knows other than Google.

  130. Great post Neil, really helpful for learners and frankly give idea.

  131. Thank You Neil, You always help me for making a right strategy. Regards.

  132. Lejoan Manghay :

    Thanks Neil for this helpful information. At least we have a future insights what could be happen next to penguin updates so we can prepare for the next google algorithm.

    Love to stay tune on your blog for more informative post!

    • Glad I could help. I think it’s always helpful to know what’s going to happen next so you can prepare ๐Ÿ™‚

  133. Matt Fielding :

    Hi Neil – I think you’re right about links in author bios not being as valuable, but it’s important to remember that Author Rank largely relies on this type of link.

    Realistically, links with a rel=”author” tag are bound to be treated differently than simple bio links. What are your thoughts on this?

    • I would agree with you. It is the type of links and even placement. Natural links within the content should do well even a few years from now.

  134. Gagandeep Singh :

    Sir I want to know that should we continue guest blogging on the same website or we should alter the websites for guest blogging?

  135. Julia McCoy :

    Excellent article. These Google Penguin 2.0 prophecies for the future are not far-fetched.

  136. Ricky Vargas :

    Penguin 2.0 is scary, looks like Google is getting more intelligent than ever.

  137. Aakash Goyal :

    The concept of devaluing links is interesting as The article on a site will be rewarded according to author rank.
    Now i will be more interested in increasing author rank.

  138. Great advice Neil! Quick question, you mentioned that sometimes its a better idea to not link back to your site. That Google will take notice of that. But I was wondering how they will notice that’s it’s you, if you’re not actually linking?? Thanks!!

    • They just do because of the names you mention in the site. Their algorithm is pretty sophisticated.

  139. HI,

    But according to me i am not sure about guest bloggers hurt with SEO. but i have concern that what will be the ratio of out going and incoming links on your site. If incoming links are much higher then external links then it will not hurt.. Any suggestion on it

    • Don’t worry about outgoing links. Link out when it makes sense.

      As for incoming links, make sure they aren’t too rich in anchor text. Rich links is what will help you.

  140. Hi guys, I have blog which is top in Google..Any want to Guest posting Kindly contact me..

  141. Amit Kumar Mondal :

    Thanks for provide us such informative information about guest blogging…..

    • Kunar, glad I could help. Please let me know if you have any questions or feedback. I would love to hear more from you ๐Ÿ™‚

  142. on Mr.Neil Patel tells that
    Author rank is becoming more commonly used by writers these days. This allows Google to see where you are publishing your content and how well it does throughout the web.
    But what he did not understand is that using your Author links in different websites and linking each other, may lead Google to find out that you are linking back your own content, and can be marked as unnatural links
    So the following paragraphs is utter crap as linking your own content will not lead to devalue content, but it will lead to getting penalty for unnatural links. ๐Ÿ™‚
    If you continually write great content, Google will eventually place more weight on your contentโ€ฆno matter what site you write on.
    At the same time, if you continue to put out crap, theyโ€™ll keep track of it and devalue the links in your post. It doesnโ€™t matter if you are blogging on Huffington Post or an unknown blog, they will devalue anything you link to if they notice you are just guest blogging for links.
    More abut linking your own content:

    • I don’t think it will lead to a Google penalty as long as the link makes sense, is relevant, and isn’t rich in anchor text. If you abuse it, I think that is when you will get in trouble.

  143. If you read the fine prints of this post, you will understand that.

    Google does not like linking to your own content. (strictly it is not organic) It does not say that you can make good quality post and link to yourself.
    Even it say exchanging money for links is prohibited. I used to get 480 usd/year for a link. (3 years before. Now I have stopped it) with that money you can create at least 10 very high quality articles.

    So forget about that myth (creating high quality posts yourself is allowed to create back link to your own post to manipulate page rank). All those links are clearly unnatural links.

    And even if they are not using author link to locate unnatural links today, what is the guarantee that they will not use it tomorrow

    From google page:-

    Buying or selling links that pass PageRank. This includes exchanging money for links, or posts that contain links; exchanging goods or services for links; or sending someone a โ€œfreeโ€ product in exchange for them writing about it and including a link”

  144. Sorry for commenting again. !!!

    I did not analyze this properly

    “I donโ€™t think it will lead to a Google penalty as long as the link makes sense, is relevant, and isnโ€™t rich in anchor text.”

    Yes you may be right. But then what is the use for back link??? Without anchor links forget about search engine ranking.

    Also please read this also (from google link page)

    Any links intended to manipulate PageRank or a site’s ranking in Google search results may be considered part of a link scheme and a violation of Googleโ€™s Webmaster Guidelines. This includes any behavior that manipulates links to your site or outgoing links from your site.

    Any links includes incoming and outgoing links, quality and non quality articles. So any link made by you to your own post that pass page rank to manipulate search engine result position is considered as a violation of google webmaster guide line.

    • Prasad, thanks for providing relevant information for back linking. Like I noted in my article a good back linking strategy (that follows the above guidelines) will always be vital. However, it must be supported by a content strategy that aims to provide quality content and provide relevant information to the audience.

  145. Realistically, links with a rel=โ€authorโ€ tag are bound to be treated differently than simple bio links.

    As per me links with rel is not passing page rank to the other site. That means you can 1000’s or millions of nofollow links. It is just considered as advertisement board of a business. If any reader comes to your site through those links they are welcome.
    Google recommend to add nofollow to all paid or bought links for traffic or advertising purpose. They just want to know whether to omit or add while calculating page rank.

    But if you add a bio as well as an organic keyword optimized link in content to same domain then you may fall in trouble. (not always as your competitor can also do the same to make you trouble).
    It is really tricky.

  146. I think the only way to recover from Penguin is to disavow the links coming from spammy or non niche specific websites or blogs. However, it might only vanish the penalty and should give the best to gain the lost ranking again. In my case, social media is doing a great job. Thanks for the share Neil.

  147. Hey Neil awesome post.

    I love being able to count on quicksprout for current updates and commentary to put things in perspective.

    Would you say that posting quality content and linking back to your website from web 2.0 sites (like squidoo) holds no value as well?

  148. Guest blogging has really helped a lot of bloggers get discovered. I pray it doesn’t get affected.
    Nice blogpost Neil

  149. Guest blogging is almost destroyed by Google ๐Ÿ™‚

  150. Some experts think that guest blogging is over, while some think that guest blogging still works, what is your opinion Neil…???

  151. Neil,
    I really enjoy reading articles on quicksprout. I want to ask how much time it take for your guys to write a article that do well in search result and and you get massive reads.

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  153. Md Nuruzzaman :

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  156. Jamshed Abbasi :

    I think guest blogging is an efficient way of getting more content to your blog, but at the same time its a hectic to review them for good quality contents. Nice piece of article. Appreciated.

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  158. Douglass Humphrys :

    Thanks Neil,

    Now I will do โ€œCall to actionโ€ I think thatโ€™s the missing element on my important landing pages.


  159. Michelle Lapointe :

    Love having a read through these old blog posts. Now I know to not always link back to my site in Guestposts. Thank you Neil.

  160. Very nice and informative article. I agree that good content is an important point in blogging. Thank you Neil!

  161. Very useful information for bloggers Neil Patel.. Keep up the good work. It was really helpful for us to write our blogs. We are a small web design company in UK

  162. Flughafentaxi Wien :

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