By siteadmin | Social Media Marketing | 13 March 2013

Spammy links from poorly executed guest blogging campaigns have the potential to be your problem child links of the future. If you are doing any kind of link un-building for your clients or own websites right now then you will undoubtedly appreciate the need to be considered with your link building campaigns from here on out.

1. Signs of Authentication
You need to be aware of the integrity of publishers you guest post to because you want to know that they are not going to compromise your link profile later by deciding to overtly sell links perhaps or or open the floodgates to guest post submissions from anybody (dramatically decreasing the potential value of your post and lumping your site in with the rest who came to the party late!). There are no sure shot ways to determine integrity, but here are few rules of thumb to determine the same.

Signs of Validity:
Known website
Recognized as an authoritative resource
Owned by a thought-leader
Clear editorial and business objectives
A ‘real’ organisation behind the website e.g. physical address

2. Look for social media activity
This is not an hard and fast rule since an active Facebook page now does not necessarily mean the blogger will not disappear in six months time. As you move further, get into the mindset of ‘who’ you get links from rather than ‘where’. Check if the AgentRank/AuthorRank, guest posting on a website that is operated by an individual or organisation with a high level of trust and perceived authority .

3. Presence of a blogger or editorial staff
A site that shows signs of no regular editorial staff or in most cases one consistent blogger should make you a little alert. Browse through the about page to check out the page. A site without a driving editorial force could be a blog which is a little more than SEO. There could be instances where a site is operated by a curator who may not write much but is a driving force behind the scenes.

4. Watch out for their linking protocols
A website which knows about guest posting trusts their contributors-they do not mind how many links you include in your article as long as you are prudent about self promotion. If the post has nothing more than two bio links (and the site’s guidelines on links prevent you from any links in the article) , then it could be a page that could be perceived as being for SEO purposes. Where applicable, an authentic article is likely to have additional links and not just to the obvious choice (Wikipedia).

5. Observe the site structure

If the website you have targeted has poor structure, then you might face the problem of an outdated link as the value of this link might diminish over time. Also, if a page (in terms of clicks) is further away from the home page, the less valueable it becomes.

6. Does this link relate to the user’s perspective?
Relevance does not refer to a website in the same industry. It simply means full filling the criteria and make sense from the user’s point of view. In many industries, securing directly relevant links isn’t necessarily a possibility because the other blogs in the space may well be competitors (not all industries are as friendly as us SEO)

Some other things to watch out for:
Does the site publish guest posts from just about anyone?

Irrelevant linking makes you doubt whether the publisher or blogger is prepared to share their blog literally to anyone willing to provide even bite size content.

Unrelevant and (likely paid links) in the sidebar

Based on what we have seen so far from the Penguin update, one factor that links the pages that we’ve seen de-indexed (of the URLs we’ve analysed) are the ones that have considerable numbers of irrelevant and often spammy outbound links. Relevance is a key factor for “future-proof” link building.

No contact details
You do have to question why a website would not have contact details or at least a contact form. Not having a way to get hold of the individual or organisation behind the website is a real deal breaker .

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