Use content syndication as a way to maximise your content outreach, and in some cases, syndicate content from other sites to help boost content on your own website.
You always want to get traffic and at times it can be difficult to do so.
Overview for Using Content Syndication to Multiply The Impact of Your Content
- What is Content Syndication?
- Benefits of Content Syndication
- Disadvantages of Content Syndication
- Fixing the Disadvantages of Content Syndication
- Free Sources of Content Syndication
- Viable Alternatives
- Bonus Tip on Timing of Syndication
What is Content Syndication?
Content syndication is when content is re-published on third party websites, with the benefit of increasing your outreach to different audiences on the part of the content creator and of free and quality relevant content on the part of the content publisher.
Benefits of Content Syndication
The biggest advantage of content syndication is that it enables you to scale your content, essentially multiplying your rewards for each article.
For example, after writing and publishing one blog post on your site, you can leverage your blog post and republish on other sites.
The main benefits you’ll receive will be an additional traffic source and links back to your site, while building your brand awareness to a different audience.
Of course, the bigger the site is, the higher their quality standards will be and the more difficult it will be to get republished by them.
Disadvantages of Content Syndication
One of the biggest fears may be about duplicate content resulting in a penalty to their published blog article, or in Google indexing the syndicated content instead of the original.
Not to worry however, there are a few easy ways to sidestep this problem while still holding on to all the main benefits which we’ll cover below.
Also, should an established website such as Lifehacker republish your content, there may be a chance that your original post will be outranked by the syndicated post on Google.
Another downside is the lack of control on the 3rd-party site where in exchange for the exposure, you will not be able to collect emails and build your list from interested readers.
Fixing the Disadvantages of Content Syndication
If you are still in favour of getting exposure, traffic and links to your site through content syndication, here are some ways you can utilise to fix or mitigate the disadvantages.
1. Add a rel=canonical tag in a link to your original post
What this does is to tell Google that the target of this link is the original content, which will then help Google in their search results indexing without any duplication penalty.
When republishing on 3rd-party sites, always request that the publishing sites use the rel=canonical tag.
For reference, it will look something like this in the <head> section of a page:
<link rel="canonical" href="http://example.com/blog/title">
2. Add a meta noindex tag to the syndicated post
Adding a meta noindex tag to the syndicated post will prevent it from appearing in Google search results, hence solving the duplicate content issue.
However, this might be troublesome for the 3rd-party site to implement and/or they may not see the need to do so if they already have a pool of other writers and websites to choose from.
For reference, the tag will look like this in the <head> section of a page:
<meta name="robots" content="noindex">
Should you have to choose between a rel=canonical tag and a meta noindex tag, go for the canonical tag as google is good at interpreting it.
3. Request for post attribution
At the very least if the above two methods doesn’t work out, the content syndication partner should attribute your post with a backlink.
This is as simple as saying, “This post was originally published on Example Site“, at the top of the syndicated article.
Free Sources of Content Syndication
If you are an expert at writing great content that can easily get hundreds or thousands of shares, then you can consider content syndication with established sites like Buzzfeed, Buffer, Inc and Lifehacker.
However, even if you are not an expert, there are still many options available through self-posting on third-party websites.
Republishing Content on Medium
Medium is a great choice for self-syndication as they allow you to add the rel=canonical tag to your republished content.
However, in order to really get a lot of traffic from Medium, your content will need to resonate with readers and in the best case, be picked and featured by an editor.
You will get the most optimal results if you are actively engaged on Medium, otherwise you’ll just have to be content with the occasional referral traffic and backlink (which isn’t a bad option either)
Content Syndication with RSS
RSS (Rich Site Summary or more often called Really Simple Syndication) is a type of web syndication that is also quite common.
In general, there are many small businesses and blog owners who are too busy to write their own original content, hence they may choose to build up their site by piggybacking off popular posts on other blogs.
If you are interested to learn more, check out our SEO tip about how RSS can maximise your content outreach.
Content Syndication on LinkedIn
LinkedIn will be a great place for self-syndication if your topic and niche has some relevance to professionals, especially in the Business-To-Business (B2B) area.
However, as LinkedIn does not allow you to add a rel=canonical or noindex meta tag, you may face some of the disadvantages of duplicate content.
You can consider republishing your content on LinkedIn if you value the potential traffic and backlink more than the loss in SEO juice.
While not quite the same as content syndication, the following suggestions are still pretty close in helping you get the benefits of syndication without much more effort or disadvantages.
Content Curation and Discovery on Mix.com
Mix is the successor of Stumbleupon and essentially functions as a content curation and discovery platform.
After a user browse Mix, it will learn more about his/her content preferences, and then rank content based on their algorithm to show the best content.
The process to put your content on Mix.com is very quick and easy without any code required, and overall it can be a viable alternative to get your content discovered by others.
Repurposing Your Content for Quora Questions
With millions of questions asked on Quora, it is very likely that you will be able to find a question that is relevant to what you have written.
One quick way to find these relevant questions is by doing a search on Google like this:
One benefit of searching this way (compared to searching on Quora itself) is that you will be less distracted by the answer excerpts that Quora shows, allowing you to focus on finding the right question faster.
The other benefit is that you will be able to see the most updated date of the question, hence indicating the “freshness” of the question.
Once you have shortlisted questions that are very relevant to your content, all you have to do is tweak your writing slightly to fit the question, then copy and paste your content with a backlink to your site.
Bonus Tip on Timing of Syndication
Let your original content get indexed by Google first to reap the full benefits.
Consider waiting several days to a week before you syndicate your post on other platforms.
This will reduce the chances of a syndicated post being ranked higher than your original on Google Search results.