Should You Keep Your Best Content, or Give it Away? Part 1
The dilemma of whether to keep your best content on your own website or place it elsewhere is something that SEO experts like to debate quite a bit. Opinions vary massively, and for some people, the answer is situation dependent. There are some bloggers that actively seek out guest bloggers because they want more content and they don’t have a large writing staff. There are others who are just starting out, and they want to boost their reputation by writing guest posts and columns for other sites so that they can increase their incoming link count.
Sometimes a beginner might ask a more experienced SEO to help with roundup posts, as a way of increasing their credibility and building up content. As you can see, there are many reasons that people might solicit content, or contact someone to place content. If you are going to make new content, though, where should you put it?
It could be argued that if you’re going to all that effort the content should stay on your own site. There is a point there. It could, however, be good to share it so that it will reach a wider audience and potentially bring you more traffic and more leads.
If you’re happy to place content elsewhere, then it makes sense to try it. Branching out works well for an awful lot of people. Having columns on reputable sites, doing interviews, doing guest posts and giving roundups can be helpful. Having diverse traffic streams means that if your rankings ever fall you should still get some decent traffic from the other sites, because you are not entirely relying on Google for your traffic. You can get highly qualified leads that way, too.
Also, if you put your content on other sites, you are able to keep up a nice broad and popular profile regardless of your own site, so you will not have to worry about losing everything if you lose your domain. When search traffic is comparatively low it makes sense to put good content on other people’s sites where you might get more eyeballs to it. Do still be selfish with content that you have invested a lot of time and effort into, but remember that the content is useless if nobody sees it.
The Pros and Cons
If you can’t decide where you want to put your content, look at where your traffic comes from and base your final decision on that. If you get a lot of referrals, then put the content elsewhere. If you get a lot of traffic from the search engines (organic, not paid search) then keep the content on your own website.
On balance, it should really work out something like that:
- Sharing content improves your visibility and helps you to reach a new, bigger audience
- Sharing content increases your authority as an expert in the relevant online community
- Sharing content could appear in other people’s newsletters and in other roundups
- If anything bad happens to your website then you will still have content elsewhere.
- Sharing content means that other people will link to the third party site, not yours.