In January 2014, Matt Cutts of Google declared that “guest blogging is done”, because “it’s just gotten too spammy.” He also went on to say that, “if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.”

Guest blogging started out as a good practice on the web. In its early days, it was a genuine way of reaching out to people that it actually brought value to the internet community.

Currently, too many people are taking advantage of guest blogging for linking. In fact, there are several companies and individuals who offer “guest post outsourcing services,” these days. This has resulted to the proliferation of low quality, sometimes mind-numbing content that no one wants to read.

How will Google know the difference between quality blogging and spam?

When some people figured out that guest blogging would be a great way to get others to link to their site, tons of generic, boring and sometimes really bad posts flooded the web. Worse, several sites were created for the sole purpose of hosting guest posts which are supposed to help sites rank higher in search engine results through several links embedded in the posts.

Again, these posts are mostly keyword-stuffed pieces, filled with fluff and poorly written. This alerts Google and identifies and marks them as spammy, low quality web sites. Sometimes, the high volume of guest blog posts in a site also warns Google that this is a link building tactic and marks them as spam.

With so many unscrupulous site owners as well as marketers out there, large scale guest blogging has become risky. Excellent quality guest blogging would be judged on the merit of the site that the post is published and the relevance of the content to the recipient link.

A little bit more on the subject from Matt Cutts himself:

Guest blogging is here to stay for sure

Despite what Cutts described as, “The decay and fall of guest blogging for SEO,” guest blogging is here to stay.

The reality is, Google continues to give preference to content-based link building. This is not going to change any time soon.

Cutts admits that despite the negative things he pointed out, guest blogging is a great way to gain exposure for your product, to get your branding recognised, to increase your reach and a good way to expand your network and get to know and interact with other members of the internet community.

Cutts did point out that there are “fantastic, high-quality guest bloggers out there,” and that he was not talking about high-quality multi-author blogs. His declaration about the negative aspects of guest blogging was directed specifically at people who spam others in order to get ahead in search engine rankings.

Search Engine Optimisation or SEO specialists and content marketers need to know that guest blogging should only be used as a supporting tactic. It should not be their main strategy in getting their sites to rank higher in the SERPs (search engine results pages). Keep your site clean of spammy content and Google will reward you.