Content syndication is the tactic of re-publishing your original content (articles, videos, slideshow galleries) onto other sites as a way to gain traffic or exposure.
When our SVP of Audience Development, Deb Kadetsky, came to me with the idea of starting a content syndication program a few years ago, I was immediately interested. It briefly crossed my mind that it may be an odd fit to have the SEO also handling syndication. You know I like unique content, right? I wasn’t sure the benefit of putting another site’s content verbatim on our own and vice versa.
Here is an example pulled from SheKnows.com. An article titled, “Should Managers Treat Parents & Non-parents the Same?” was originally published on FairyGodBoss.com. One of our editors liked the angle and since we have a syndication partnership in place with FairyGodBoss, we published it also on SheKnows.com. It’s essentially the same content published on two different URLs.
Here are the questions to ask yourself before adding syndicated content onto your own site (or publishing your content on another site):
1. Would my audience be interested in this topic?
2. Is the quality of this content something I’m comfortable with?
3. Is the website where it comes from high-quality?
Fast forward to now and although the program has seen slow growth across the years, I do see the benefits to these partnerships.
Three reasons to try content syndication partnerships:
1. More exposure for your brand – When editorial budgets are lean, it’s nice to have the extra content to fill gaps and provide our users with high quality partner content. In both directions, it’s a set of eyes on your brand, your logo, that may never see it otherwise. And this content is a way to gain additional ad impressions from content we didn’t pay for.
2. Links back to your site – The actual link value of this is questionable, but I don’t see why they wouldn’t hold some weight. The partnerships are legit, we’re sharing great content to a relevant audience and following all syndication best practices.
3. Networking with other publisher sites – This part has been my favorite. I’m completely fascinated with other publisher sites, from their processes to their e-mail etiquette, I’m interested in all of it. So getting to reach out to other media companies, talk about the sites they own and which content would be a match for our audience is completely up my alley.
When engaging in content syndication partnerships, it’s super important to follow Google’s syndication best practices. Make sure to use the canonical tag, pointed at the URL that is the original source. You should also credit the OG source on the front-end, by adding a line that says something like, ‘originally published on…’ and linking directly to the piece that was cross-published.