Google has made an official comment, a warning, for the use of guest posting for the sake of SEO. There are numerous websites that rely on guest posting for content, and in return offer a link back. Here’s the grey area, how does Google determine what is quality content and what’s been created to manipulate search? Their post of best practices suggests they can tell the difference, which wouldn’t surprise me.

How does this impact the average user? If you’ve remained focussed on creating valuable content for your readers/target market, then you’re fine. If the value you offer from your website is for content writers and the link they could get, then you’re on the radar for a possible ‘penalty’.

More from Google:

  • Stuffing keyword-rich links to your site in your articles
  • Having the articles published across many different sites; alternatively, having a large number of articles on a few large, different sites
  • Using or hiring article writers that aren’t knowledgeable about the topics they’re writing on
  • Using the same or similar content across these articles; alternatively, duplicating the full content of articles found on your own site (in which case use of rel=”canonical”, in addition to rel=”nofollow”, is advised)