Should you keep your best content on your site or send it away?
Contributor Julie Joyce looks at the pros and cons of keeping content on your site versus sending it away.
Recently, I’ve had some very enjoyable discussions with other search engine optimization specialists (SEOs) about where to place promotional content.
Opinions vary and are dependent on the goals of the webmaster. Some webmasters openly ask for guest bloggers since they need content and don’t have a writing staff.
Others who are just starting out want to write guest posts or columns for sites other than their own as a way to boost their reputation and increase inbound link counts.
Some newbie professionals ask more seasoned SEOs to participate in roundup posts as a way to build credibility for their sites. There are many reasons people ask for content or ask to place content.
Many of my colleagues are of the opinion that if you’re going to create great content, you should keep it on your own site. While I can definitely see that point, I really do like the idea of having my content placed on other sites because it increases my potential for traffic, leads and clients.
Go west, young lady
I’m fine with placing content on other people’s websites. I believe in branching out and placing content because it works for me.
I am lucky to get a lot of good leads from my Search Engine Land column, as well as interviews, the occasional guest post, roundups and lists on other sites and on social media.
My rankings are not nearly as good as they once were, but it’s interesting that while they have fallen, my traffic has remained mostly steady (albeit from traffic spikes that occur when I publish something and very little traffic when I don’t) and my leads have continued to come in just as they once did. In fact, I’m getting more than ever.
I also get a lot of direct traffic. Organic search is my third-highest source of traffic, as you can see below:
This is another reason I like placing my content on other sites: If anything happened to my site, I’d still be able to maintain traffic and leads.
When I dig around in the analytics accounts of many of my clients, this is a much more common picture:
In a case like this, with the referral traffic being third and around 30 percent of the traffic from organic search, there’s no way I’d put my best content on someone else’s site. I might put good content …