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Writing content for another site as guest author or blogger can have many benefits. It could help you get more exposure, especially if you’re writing for a site that’s a lot bigger than yours. Working with other sites also gives you the opportunity to build potentially worthwhile (business) relationships and broaden your network. You might even get paid for your guest articles. Another obvious advantage, of course, is gaining valuable backlinks to your site.

Now, this doesn’t mean you should start sending out loads of mediocre articles to every blog that’s even remotely relevant to your own. A better strategy: guest-write great content for the right website, perhaps a few guest posts, and engage with the audience: you’ll surely get noticed.

But, once you’ve invested a lot of time in writing a great article that you’re very proud of, odds are you also want to put that content on your own site. Preferably without creating duplicate content issues. What are your options, in that case?

Yossi sent us a question that shows this dilemma:

I sometimes write articles for a third party website. I’d also like to put them on my own site. But I noticed the other site set a rel=”canonical” attribute pointing to their page. So, how can I put the articles I wrote on my site and benefit from them, without getting a penalty from Google?

Watch the video or read the transcript further down the page for my answer!

Reposting guest-authored content

“The problem is, Yossi, if you publish them on that other site first, and that other site is bigger than yours, then the chance of you ranking with that content is close to zero.

So, if you want to rank with content, you need to decide where to put it first, and otherwise, you have to put a canonical on that third-party website to yours. But if they’re paying you to write that, or if there’s another sort of deal, they’ll probably not be willing to do that. So, decide where you want to rank with content, publish it there first, otherwise put a canonical from the page that you want not to rank to the page that you want to rank.

But if you can’t do any of that, then I would not go through the trouble of publishing it again on your own site. Because it really doesn’t make all that much sense. And you’d be better off just publishing a short snippet on your own site, saying, “Hey, I wrote this on that other site.” Good luck.”

Ask Yoast

In the series Ask Yoast, we answer SEO questions from our readers. Do you have an SEO-related question? A pressing SEO dilemma you can’t find the answer to? Send an email to [email protected], and your question may be featured in one of our weekly Ask Yoast vlogs.

Note: you may want to check our blog and knowledge base first, the answer to your question could already be out there! For urgent questions, for example about the Yoast SEO plugin not working properly, please contact us through our support page.

Read more: The ultimate guide to content SEO »

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