Six Sound Tips for Guest Post Bylines

Posted by Adam Pieniazek | Blogging Tips | May 28th, 2009

When publishing guest posts, there’s a few sound tips to keep in mind for the byline that will provide the most value to the guest writer, your readers and yourself. As we’ve written before, guest posts are a great way to promote yourself. By writing a solid guest post, that blog’s readers may click through to your blog and become your readers as well. Even if they don’t click through, the link(s) back to your site will help with optimizing your site for search engines.

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the byline. Whether you’re looking to guest post somewhere or publishing guest posts on your site, these guidelines will help both parties get the most out of the guest post and byline.

Place the byline before the post

The reason for this tip is simple. When Google crawls your site, they place the most importance on the first link in the post. For this reason, it’s best to place the guest poster’s byline at the top of the post, before the content. Doing so will ensure the guest poster gets the most SEO benefit from posting on your site. After all, you want to encourage more guest posters and the best way to do so is to ensure they have a positive experience.

Allow two links in the byline

In today’s Twitter crazy world, it’s not uncommon for guest bloggers to have more than one way of connecting with them. Allowing two links in the byline let’s the guest poster point readers to their blog and Twitter account (or other blog or social media profile).

Visually separate the byline

Make sure the byline is visually distinguishable from the post content. Either italicize the byline or apply some custom CSS styling to it to help readers quickly separate the byline from the post content. Without this visual distinction, readers may think the byline is part of the actual post and become confused and stop reading.

Brevity with clarity

When crafting a byline, opt for simplicity. A successful byline should be no more than three sentences. It’s a chance for the guest blogger to describe the most important aspects of themselves, not launch into a mini-biography. Pick a few keywords that describe the blogger and move on to the content.

Dofollow the links

It should go without saying, but if someone guest posts on your site, please do not nofollow their links. This person was nice enough to give you great content, allowing you to take a breather for a day so reward them for it with dofollow links. Likewise, when guest posting ensure your byline links are dofollowed.

Be flexible

Perhaps the blogger you’re writing a guest post allows for only one link. Or maybe they place the byline at the end of the post. Does this mean you should not write a post for them? Not necessarily. Take other factors into account like traffic, readers, and relevance. For example, Daniel Scocco from Daily Blog Tips places the byline at the end of the guest post. But, Daniel’s traffic, reader base and authority more than outweigh this slight negative.

With these tips, you’re now ready to craft excellent bylines that increase your click through rate and provide guest posters the most value. Keep in mind that these are just our sound tips and remember to be flexible. Take a look at all the factors when guest posting and accepting guest posts.

Do you have guidelines for writing and accepting guest posts? Share them in the comments below so we can all learn.

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6 Responses to “Six Sound Tips for Guest Post Bylines”

  1. Excellent tips, Adam. And thanks for the tips on my blog as well! I will be taking your advice and just try to blog more – even if there are small, quick little updates. I always felt that my blogs had to be these big, meaningful, epic posts, but now I think I can find a happy medium between Twitter and blogging.


  2. Great tips! I wish I would have known this before recently posting a guest post. The good news is, I posted the byline before the content, I DoFollow and I separated the byline from the post.

  3. Garry, it’s true, some of the best blog posts out there are short. In general, I try to keep mine in the 5-600 word range as it seems that’s about the perfect extent for posts. Of course, some will be longer and some shorter but it’s a good general target.

    Well the Carla, you’re ahead of the game. I’m sure your guest poster will appreciate publishing a top notch byline.

  4. Great info. Want to write a guest post for me? Obviously not about Costa Rica, but anything SEO, WordPress or Design related would be great…

  5. Sure Jim. I’ll drop you an e-mail in a bit with a few ideas.

  6. Pura Vida!

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