There is a lot of buzz about sponsored articles these days. In fact that is the way most of the bloggers are actually making quick bucks.
If you are unaware of what sponsored posts are, then let me throw some light on this subject.
My Explanation for Sponsored Posts goes like this…
“A sponsored post usually comprises of a short article (often written as an advertisement) and including a custom anchor text-link back to the client’s website from within the article. A Sponsored article is often irrelevant to your blog’s theme and the advertiser pays you a good amount to publish that article on your blog”
Motive behind sponsored posts
The advertiser’s main motive is to build custom anchor text links to manipulate the search engine rankings in favor of his client’s website.
What kind of blogs are targeted
Blogs with high traffic and page rank are usually targeted by such advertisers. The better your blog stats are, the more money you are likely to get paid out by the advertiser.
Here is a screenshot of a random advertising company inquiring me about the same for my photography blog…I have concealed the links and associated names to protect the identity
Summing it up, publishing sponsored posts is somewhat same as publishing paid links on your blog. Though that includes quick monetary benefits, but your blog is more likely to die out in long terms for sure !
Dangers of accepting sponsored posts:
1. The Google Blow
Since sponsored articles are the same as paid links, major search engines like Google are more likely to punish your website for trying to manipulate its search engine rankings. Such Google penalties can range from poor rankings, sudden drop of PageRank to being completely deindexed by the SE giant.
This could be a lethal blow (often beyond recovery) to websites heavily relying on traffic from search engines.
2. Loss in loyal readership and traffic
If you are in a habit of publishing more and more paid articles just for the sake of making easy and quick money, then dude you have to think about it again! You are actually compromising your entire blog for short term money.
No one would like to see frequent advertorial posts on their favorite blog for sure. That’s very frustrating and in the process you are actually losing your hard earned traffic and website reputation altogether.
Matt Cutts on Sponsored Posts
According to Matt Cutts, the distinguished Google engineer, if you are accepting sponsored posts then you have to strictly abide by these guidelines or face deadly penalties from Google and other search engines as well:
Guideline 1 : Clearly specify in your advertorial post that it is going to be a sponsored article and that you are being paid by the advertiser for doing so.
Guideline 2 : Sponsored links should not pass the PageRank juice. That is, you must mark all sponsored links with rel=’nofollow’ attribute.
Read his full post here
So should I accept sponsored post ?
It’s totally up to you. Measure the short term monetary benefits to long term fruitful results your blog would probably have over a period of time.
If according to you, these short term benefits weigh more than your entire blog, then go ahead and start popping your blog with loads of sponsored articles.
However, if you value your blog far more than these short term monetary benefits then stay away from such offers and concentrate on improving your blog.
On a final note…
This trend of paid articles is not going away anytime sooner as long as people continue to nod their head for a yes to such offers. Be prepared to receive such offers from SEO companies and making a wise decision there after ! What are your opinions about sponsored articles ? Do share your thoughts with us 😉