Guest posting can take a lot of time. You need to find sites to pitch, get your pitch accepted, and then actually write a good post. So that comes with two big limitations. The first is finding enough unique topics to write about.
And the second is time. But I’m going to help you break through these limitations. In this video, I’m going to show you how to systematize your guest blogging process so you can find an unlimited number of prospects and topics with very little effort.
Stay tuned. [music] What’s up SEOs? Sam Oh here with Ahrefs, the SEO tool that helps you grow your search traffic, research your competitors and dominate your niche. Now, while each of the tactics that I’m about to share with you are easy alone, this is more of an advanced tutorial because scaling any link building process, it takes time, and some trial and error.
So what is guest posting or guest blogging? It’s when you publish content on another website with the goal to increase exposure, traffic, or brand awareness for your own site. And this tactic only has 3 steps.
#1. You need to find websites to pitch your guest post ideas to. #2. Find topics to write about. #3. Write content and get it approved/published on their blog, ideally with a link back to your site. So let’s move on to step one and find guest posting sites to pitch.
There are two really easy ways to do this. The first one is to search for something like: intitle:your topic, so I’ll use fitness as our example. And then I’ll add “guest post by” as a phrase match.
Next, we want to make sure that pitching these sites will be worth your time. And this is super important because you don’t want to spend your time writing for websites that get no traffic and have no links, because it’s probably not going to do much for your brand or website.
And there are two metrics you can look at to get a bird’s eye view of the websites. The first is Domain Rating, which is an Ahrefs metric that represents the overall strength of a website’s backlink profile.
And the second is the amount of search traffic they get at the domain level. And you can find these metrics with Ahrefs SEO toolbar. After you’ve installed it, just click on the icon, and you’ll see that there’s an inline view of the SEO metrics for each page.
And the domain level metrics are the ones on the right side. One of my favorite things to do is to export the top 100 results, which you can do by clicking the icon up here. Just make sure that you have your settings to show the top 100 results, which you can do by going to Settings, Search settings, and drag the “Results per page” up to 100.
Then you can open up the spreadsheet and start creating filters to only show websites that will meet your “thresholds.” For example, you can set a filter to only show pages with a Domain Rating of 40 or higher.
And then set the Domain Search Traffic filter to more than 10,000 search visitors. And right away, you have a list of around 15 or so guest posting sites to pitch. Now, 15 or so results probably won’t be too exciting if you’re looking to do this at scale.
So the best way to find thousands of guest posting sites is to use Content Explorer. This is basically our mini search engine that has a ton of filterable metrics and one cool feature that’s pretty game-changing for guest blogging.
So first, I’ll type in “fitness” and change this to a title search. Next, I’ll set the “One article per domain” filter, since we don’t need to pitch the same website numerous times.
Now, we can set the Domain Rating filter again to a minimum of 40 and add a max value of 70. And I’ll also set the language filter to “English,” since I won’t be able to pitch sites in another language.
And we now have a list of nearly 10,000 unique websites that have written about our topic. Now, two important notes: #1. You don’t need to limit your prospects to just websites that have a “Write for us” page.
Most websites don’t have one and if you’re actually providing solid content for them, then there are very few reasons as to why they would reject it. And #2. You will have to filter through these results.
But it’s literally just a matter of eyeballing the domain names using the “does the domain name look like it makes sense” rule. One last tip is that you should prioritize the sites you pitch based on a.
) relevancy, which is pretty straightforward, and b.) if the website has ever linked to you before. And this is the game-changing feature I was talking about. Within Content Explorer, we have this filter called “Highlight unlinked domains.
” Here’s how it works. Just click here and enter in your domain. And right away, it’s going to highlight all of the domains that have never linked to your website before. And the reason why this is important is because in general, links from the same websites will have less weight than a link from a new referring domain.
So you want to be pitching new websites that have never linked to you before. Great! So now all we need to do is click the Export button and just make sure that the “Only highlighted unlinked domains” checkbox is checked, which will further narrow down your list of guest posting prospects.
From here, just open up your spreadsheet and clean up your list a bit for websites that you want to pitch. Ok, we now have a ton of sites to pitch our guest posts to and could easily scale this by entering in different search terms in Content Explorer.
The next step is to find suitable guest post topics to write about. Now, I know that people do outreach for guest blogging differently. Some people prefer to include 3-5 headlines, while others prefer to send a general feeler email to see if the website is even accepting guest posts.
Rather than leaning to one side or the other, I’m going to show you 3 dead simple strategies to generate an infinite number of headlines to pitch. The first way is called “The Robin Hood Technique.
” If you don’t know this green hooded fellow, he’s best known for taking from the rich and giving to the poor. And in the same way, you can do that by finding topic ideas from popular sites, aka the rich, and giving your own unique content pitches to the lesser known sites, aka the poor.
So let’s go back to Content Explorer, and I’ll search for a popular website like nerdfitness.com. Next, you can sort the results of this website by whatever you think is a good fit. For example, you can sort their pages by Referring Domains or by their most shared content using the “Total shares” filter.
And you can see some good topic ideas here like on intermittent fasting, body weight workouts, and paleo dieting. So choose whichever topics you want to write about, and pitch it to the other fitness sites.
And this example nicely transitions us into the second technique, which is called “The Splintering Technique.” With the Ahrefs blog and YouTube channel, we love creating in-depth content. For example, if you look at our link building guide, you’ll see that this is a 7,500-word post with 6 chapters.
This is what we will call our “hero” content. And from here, we can “splinter” this article into 6 or more shorter pieces that we could easily pitch to other blogs. Let me put this into perspective.
Chapter 1 could be a post called “X Link Building Tactics That Move the Needle.” Chapter 2 could be “Essential Link Building Skills Every SEO Needs to Master.” And look at chapter 4.
This could be split up into numerous posts. The Art and Science of Creating Link Bait The Definitive Guide to Broken Link Building Guest Posting at Scale. You get the idea, right? And hey, even if you don’t have a ton of massive guides, you can use big guides from other sites to gain inspiration.
Looking back at the Nerd Fitness example, you’ll see that their beginner’s guide to intermittent fasting is 7,600+ words. Just scroll through the blog post, and try and extract ideas based on the subheadings.
Now, you shouldn’t be copying these articles. That’s plagiarism. These techniques are strictly meant to get quick ideas you can pitch to other websites. Alright, the final technique you can use to scale your guest posting is called “The Perspective Technique.
” And this technique is centered around finding opportunities in lateral niches. For example, if you’re a freelance writer and you want to write an article called “X Content Marketing Tips in 2019,” then you’d probably want to pitch sites focused on content marketing.
But you could slightly change the perspective of the title to something like “X Content Marketing Tips for Small Business, for Lawyers, for Startups, or whatever it might be. And you can just go to Google and type in a query like “content marketing tips for” and you’ll see a drop-down of suggestions.
But these results are very limited in terms of the quantity, so if you find this strategy works well for you, then you can enter a seed keyword into Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer tool. Next, I’ll go to the Phrase Match report.
And then I’ll use the “Include” filter to search for phrases with the word “for.” And just like that, you now have a ton of lateral niches you can reach with your content. Great, so we now have virtually an endless number of sites and more than enough topics that we can use to pitch these websites.
So the final thing to do is the most time-consuming and that’s to actually write your content. While this may be a time sucker, it’s actually the easiest. And it really comes down to this question: “How big is your wallet?” I know, I know.
No one likes hearing that, but it’s true to a certain extent. The good news is that there is no shortage of freelance writers. Just look for talent on websites like Upwork, ProBlogger Jobs, or simply by searching for something like “hire freelance writer” in a Google search.
Just make sure the content writers you hire are knowledgeable in this subject area and are capable of writing genuinely useful content. If you have a team of internal writers or have a fat wallet, then it’s simple.
Just use a modified version of the link building system that I showed you in another video, which I’ll link up here. But if you simply don’t have the budget to hire anyone, then you just can have to muscle through these articles.
If this is the case, I highly recommend using the “splintering” technique because you’ve already written a great piece of content, and rewriting a part of it with a bit more detail or perhaps a new angle shouldn’t take you very long.
And I promise you that as you continue practicing, you’ll be able to smash out quality articles fast. Now, before you go and start pitching sites, I do want to pass on a few additional tips that’ll make your guest posting campaigns a success.
First, you should always pitch more sites than you can handle. Not every site you contact is going to accept your guest post or even respond. For example, if your team can handle 10 posts per week, then I would pitch around 100 sites.
Just make sure you can deliver in a timely manner. The second guest blogging tip is to link to other guest posts that you’ve already published. And this is one of my favorite things to do, but I don’t see enough people doing it.
There are obvious benefits like having your name and face pop up in more places, but by linking to these other pages, you get the additional SEO benefits by powering the pages that are already linking to you.
And as a result, you’ll reap some of those benefits too. Guest blogging is very powerful, and it’s a strategy that we regularly use at Ahrefs. Use this process to refine your guest posting SOPs, and you’ll save a ton of time and be able to scale as far as your resources will allow.