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Do you ever wonder how some blogs have huge guest post submissions while yours has never been approached for guest blogging? You might have heard that guest blogging can significantly increase your traffic and also guarantees you that target audience, right?
Well, unless you actually open up your blog for guest blogging, it might be quite impossible to actually get such collaborations. Take an example of huge publications like Forbes, Entrepreneur and even Bitch Media that usually have tons of guest post submissions and every awesome writer wants to at least submit an article there; including me!
Opening up your blog for guest blogging allows your site to become a contributor blog and significantly exposes your blog to a whole new audience. Hence, a blog strategy you might want to consider!
So let’s start from the basics:
What Is Guest Blogging?
Guest blogging entails submitting an article to another site that is not yours for publishing. Guest blogging done well provides link backs to your site that help to improve your authority on search engines.
Many bloggers are hit by writer’s block while others get super busy and during this period, many of them take a break from blogging and if that happens, no new blog posts get published. This could cause a drop in traffic and discourages the readers and followers to keep on following your blog.
So if you still want to keep on growing your traffic, you might have to schedule a lot of posts before you actually go on that break. But honestly, without inspiration, you might not write a lot of content that you will appreciate at a go! In fact, you might even quit. That’s why opening your blog for guest blogging is so important.
So, Should You Open Your Blog to Guest Blogging as a Blogger?
Get guest bloggers to submit posts on your blog to ensure your blog doesn’t suffer. But remember, don’t just appreciate every content but ensure the content is of the right standard.
While most bloggers will only submit guest posts to other publications in order to build authority online, only a few will actually open their own blogs to guest posting. Personally, on this blog, we have a collaborations category that also features a lot of the guest submissions we’ve received.
This ensures the blog is always fresh with content and that has significantly improved our traffic since the guest authors also get to share the post with their readers; exposing us to a new audience. And that’s so awesome!
5 Things You Must Do Before Opening Up Your Blog To Guest Blogging
1. Create very awesome content.
Writers, freelancers and other bloggers will link up to submit to your blog only if your content is valuable.
Valuable content drives targeted traffic and is the key to building a raving audience. If you provide content that is great on your blog, your chances of landing guest submissions are very high.
With beautiful content, nice imagery and a great layout, your blog will be good enough to accept guest posts, no matter how old it is.
When writing a post, I will always ensure that every article I write either educates someone or inspires them. That’s a content strategy that has never failed me since it proves to add value to my readers!
2. Create a Write For Us Page.
Your content could be the greatest but unless you make it very clear to people that you actually accept guest posts, no one might approach you for a guest submission.
Many blogs will have a ‘Write For Us’ page or a ‘Work With Me’ page where all the guidelines of guest author submissions are listed.
When creating this page, it is important to be very specific with your guidelines. Unless you are specific, you might get submissions that won’t appeal to your liking.
Some of the things to explain on this page include:
- Details on how to pitch their idea before submitting the article.
- Your blog’s audience– you can include their gender and age brackets. For example: do you write about fashion for slim women or men, luxury travel for couples or solo travel for women?
- Your niche– expands on the type of posts you have on your blog and also, which type of topics you would want to be submitted by the guest authors.
- Guidelines on how to write guest posts for your blog. For example: the word limit, inclusion of images and their profile bio, use of H1, H2 and H3 subheadings, types of posts accepted- lists, biographies, personal stories, case studies.
- How to submit guest posts. For example: as a Word document via email, as a Google document or using the guest posts submissions page.
- How long it will take to publish their guest blog, if accepted and if not, how they will know that. Some huge blogs say that if you don’t hear from them within a month, just know that your article was rejected while some blog owners will email you to let you know on the same.
- You can also share a link to your contact page or email address so that guest authors can instead pitch their ideas before submitting the post.
- What the guest author will receive in exchange for the article. Some blogs will pay the guest author, others give backlinks or even do features on a Contributor page.
Sometimes, blogs will charge to receive guest submissions while others will pay for their guest blogs. Thus, this must also be clearly stated on the page.
4. Have a contact page.
It is easy to just have your email address displayed on your sidebar and still get the email requests but actually, having a contact form or contact page on your blog is even more professional and spares you the hustle of having to deal with spam comments.
I recommend using the WPForms, the best WordPress Contact Form plugin that allows you to make a lot of different types of forms for your blogs.
Good enough, you can create conversational contact forms for your site. With such an interactive contact form, even your visitors who would want to pitch ideas to you will have fun filling in the form.
Related Read: How to Create Conversational Forms on WordPress
5. Create a guest post submission page.
Sometimes, the hustle of reading through each and every email while trying to sieve out submitted guest posts can be so overwhelming. On this blog, we receive quite a number of submissions via email and it becomes highly susceptible to deletion or being forgotten due to the high amount of emails we receive daily.
Hence, the importance of a guest post submission plugin: WPForms! Precisely, the WPForms Post Submission Addon that allows users to make front-end submissions of blog posts and every other type of content on your WordPress site without logging into the admin area. This becomes very easy and also ensures that your site remains secure.
How to Create a Guest Post Submission Page with WPForms
1. Get the WPForms plugin, install and activate it on your site.
2. Upgrade to the WPForms Pro plan to have access to the Post Submissions Addon.
3. On your admin area, access the WP Settings and click on ‘Add New’ then select the ‘Post Submissions’ template.
4. Create a new post submission form and customize it to your liking. Make sure you include the fields you would want to collect from the guest author to fill in.
Some of the mandatory fields you need include: the post title, the category the post will fall into, the post excerpt, the content itself, the featured image and all necessary images for the article.
5. Save your form.
6. Create a new page and click on the ‘Add Form’ button. From the drop down menu, select your guest post submission form. Once it is added to the page, just publish the new page and you’ll have set up a guest post submission page!
As the admin, you are also able to control the default post status from a draft, pending post, private or published post once it is submitted. You can also edit the post accordingly on your WordPress Editor to ensure it matches your criteria. Ensure you optimize the headline and the whole content, using keywords, adding graphics and schedule it depending on your editorial calendar.
Why the WPForms Post Submission Addon?
- With WPForms, a user cannot submit duplicate forms which essentially makes your work easier during your reviews.
- All files uploaded are stored on your WordPress media library instead of the custom uploads folder.
- The addon allows you as the admin to set the default author of the post. This is in a case where there are registered authors.
How do you set up registered authors?
Using the WPForms User Registration Addon, you can create a form that allows the users to register. You can set the form in a way that allows you as the admin to manually approve each user before their accounts are created. This ensures that only the right authors are registered.
If you follow these 5 steps of opening up your blog for guest blogging, you’ll be amazed by the number of submissions you’ll get as you grow your blog.
What to do in Order to Get Guest Posts?
Cheers to the long hustle of getting your blog ready for guest blogging. Now, it’s time to get those guest bloggers. If you are an authoritative blog, it becomes easy but an issue comes if you are still a young blog since you might need to do blogger outreach.
You can post on social media. For example: posting on Facebook groups that your blog is open to guest authors, using Twitter hashtags like #bloggerswanted to welcome guest bloggers. You can also email your list or reach out directly to other bloggers.
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Whether you are getting ready for a new bogging strategy for exposing your blog to a new audience or getting too busy to actually balance your work with blogging, opening your blog up to guest blogging could be one of the greatest ways to appreciate your blog.
So have you tried guest blogging? And do you accept guest posts on your blog? We’d love to know if you appreciate the strategy or not and why so? Share it in the comments below…
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by WPForms