Do you accept guest posts on your blog? If you do, or plan to, WordPress contributor is going to be one of your points of interest.
WordPress contributor is one of the roles you assign to a registered user on your blog.
The roles include Admin, Editor, Author, Contributor and Subscriber.
I won’t get much into them cause there is one specific point I want to address here.
I have heard and seen this question being asked over and over again, so I thought some of you might like to learn about what do to when you make your blog open for guest posts.
Is WordPress contributor the best role for your guest authors?
My answer, straight away is yes.
The only lower rights role is subscriber, but he can not submit posts for review so that is out of the question for guest posting.
The next higher, the author, can publish posts without your review and you don’t want this with your guest posts.
The things that a WordPress contributor can do on your blog, once logged in, is add a new post and submit it for review.
Everything else is up to you.
How to make someone a contributor?
To add a new user and make him a contributor, go to
- WordPress dashboard, select Users > Add New
You will need to fill in the username, password and e-mail address of the person you want to register. Choose to send him the password via e-mail.
In the drop down menu, select Contributor.
Once the user gets the e-mail, he can log in and edit his user profile by adding the bio and social profile links. He can also submit the post for a review.
Contributor’s post editing and polishing
After the contributor is finished writing and editing the post, he submits it for review. You need to approve and schedule or publish it.
SEO the post
If the post has not been optimized for search engines, you should try to optimize it. You can ask the author to write a post with a keyword in mind, or you can do it after the post is submitted.
In case the post is submitted and not optimized this is what you need to do:
- Do keyword research and find a good keyword that fits the post.
- Do some SEO 101, meaning put the word in the URL, title, first paragraph, image ALT tag, etc.
- Find keywords in the post that can be linked to your older (related) posts.
You will also need to add images. A contributor can not add images to the post, except using a HTML code and linking to an image hosted elsewhere.
I prefer not to link to images hosted elsewhere, because if that site removes the image, I will be left with a post that has a broken image icon in it. Also, pulling up stuff from other blogs can slow down your page a lot.
Another good reason is that you never know if the contributor is using a copyrighted photo. If it is a person you trust, tell them to send you the images so you can upload them and add them to the post.
This especially goes for tutorial posts where screenshots are needed, you don’t want to do all the images yourself :)
This can be a tricky one, cause I have seen people getting upset because their guest posts have affiliate links in them.
If you offer one of your posts to a blogger, you probably need some promotion, links, traffic… You don’t get to set the rules. No one makes you offer your guest post.
If the blogger is monetizing the blog in a certain way, don’t get upset because your post is being monetized as well.
There are even plugins that will automatically turn certain keywords into affiliate links. Do you really think anyone will change that for a single post? Those plugins even change words in your comments to affiliate links. So if that is OK with you, why isn’t monetizing a post OK?
Anyway, while you are editing the guest post and getting it ready for publishing, find keywords that can be turned into affiliate links and link them like you would any of your own posts.
Don’t forget to add the post to a category it fits in and tag it. Write an excerpt if the guest hadn’t done so already.
After you are satisfied with the post, you optimized it for search engines, added images or videos and your affiliate links, you are ready to go. Schedule or publish.
After this, the WordPress contributor can not edit the post anymore.
After posting some guest posts on various blogs, I can say that being a contributor is pretty good. I personally like being only a contributor, because it prevents me to mess up someone else’s blog.
I accidentaly published a post on my blog once, that was half done. It took me half an hour of fixing stuff to delete it from RSS, Twitter, Facebook and all the other places it went to straight away.
If I did that on another person’s blog, there would be no way to fix it. I would not have access to their accounts and that would make a big mess.
As far as being an admin here, and having contributors, I have positive and negative experience.
Dino and Leo published two great posts on this blog, and they are both contributors here. But I had a guest post the other day, where the author “got distracted and forgot” that we had a deal, like replying to comments, etc.
So I have a new way of doing stuff here now. I have a “Guest Author” bio that I will use for all people that send me guest posts and who I am not familiar with. Guess there isn’t much trust in blogging world, lol.
All people who I know through this blog, their blog, Twitter or other way, will of course, get their own contributors account, with an image and a bio. What do you think about this?
The role of WordPress contributor is enough to run the guest posting on your blog. If there are people you trust, of course you can give them more rights.
But if it is a one time guest post, you can stick with contributor role and keep your headache at low level.
I also believe there are plugins and codes that can limit and change roles and what users can see in your dashboard, but I have never found it to be something I need to do.