Thank you for showing interest in contributing to Shutterstoppers. My name is Vidhu Soman, and I am a co-founder and editor of ShutterStoppers.
Unless you accidentally opened this page, you can read the guidelines to publish an article on Shutterstoppers. You might think that you don’t have to read this, and you can just send your articles or mail. But any mail or article that doesn’t stick to these guidelines will not be acknowledged.
If you want to contact me, make sure you address me by my name, and please don’t use ‘hello editor, dear editor, or hi shutterstoppers’. I want to know that I am talking to a human, not a bot (I get bot messages frequently, and some are so convincing that I respond to them thinking that it’s a human).
I don’t accept guest posts anymore, but that doesn’t mean you cannot write for ShutterStoppers
When I started this blog in 2012, guest posting was in vogue. You might know the idea of guest posts because I assume that you are reading this to contribute an article as a guest blogger.
But, I have good news and bad news.
The bad news is that the guest post is dead. I am not saying this. Google says this. And if Google says this, then I need to say it too, because the viability of this blog depends on how I follow Google’s guidelines.
You don’t believe me?
Watch this video and see what Larry page says about guest posts:
And the good news is
You can still write for ShutterStoppers.
What is the difference?
So guest posts or guest blogging is a way to generate backlinks to the guest blogger’s blog. As backlinks boost page rankings, it’s a common method used by bloggers increase their Google rankings. I think you already know this.
But it led to irrelevant linking. That is, for example, a guest blogger might need a backlink to his/her blog. So he writes an article about
‘How to be happy?’ And publishes it on a blog about happiness. But his blog is about mobile phones or not about happiness or anything close to it, but he would still get a backlink anyway as a link somewhere in the article to his blog.
Why this method didn’t work? A reader of happiness blog may not want to visit an unrelated blog (tech blog or anything of that sort), but he might want to visit a site related to the article he is reading. So linking to relevant site works, but linking to irrelevant content or blog does more harm these days.
Whenever Google detects a site sending traffic to an irrelevant content or a page, it will devalue that blog.
So, this is why traditional guest blogging is dead.
But, you can still write for ShutterStoppers provided you are writing something relevant to the website (duh) and if you want to link to your site, then it should link to a page relevant to the content of the article you are writing.
And it should be an extremely high-quality article (I don’t like to use adjectives like extremely because it makes me sound weak, but in this context, it is extremely important. Oops, I did it again).
By extremely high quality, I mean, it should not have published elsewhere. And it should not be a copy of a common article.
For example, in every photography blog, you will see an article, or more than one article, like ‘how to improve your photography’ or ‘3 or 7 tips to improve photography overnight’ and so on. Even I have published a couple of article like this. It’s obnoxious. Everybody knows that it’s a click bait article. Who are we kidding?
If you have something which is completely unique and gives value to the readers, then I will publish it without thinking twice, and I don’t care how many links you have on that article.
If this disappoints you, I am sorry. You don’t have to read further.
I am not being selfish here. It would hurt your blog as well. So I think I am helping you here.
Some FAQs about relevant content
- If I have a jewelry website and I need a link to my site, can I submit a wedding photography article on ShutterStoppers? because Jewellery and wedding are related, right?
Well, NO. You cannot do that. Relevant content in this scenario would be a link to a website that sells photography equipment. But the link should be about ‘photography equipment for wedding photography’ and the link should be on a paragraph on wedding photography equipment.
Even if you add a hyperlink to a keyword, say, camera, which directs to a website about cameras or even a blog posts that talks about cameras, it would be unacceptable because of irrelevancy. It used to be okay before, but not anymore.
A relevant linking would look like this: If you are talking about camera in night photography blog post, and if you add a hyperlink to a blog post that discusses best cameras for night photography, it would be counted as a good link.
I hope this is clear.
Articles with a good acceptance rate
If your article has the following qualities, consider it accepted or it would have a good acceptance rate. You should know the target audience of your article. If your article is basic, it would target beginners. In such a case, the article should have illustrations and media that explains the text.
- A ‘how to’ article with illustrations
- The article is written from practical experience: This would mean adding your own pictures or illustrations to explain the text content.
- With minimal typos: I understand typos. It happens, we are human beings. But, an article replete with typos is unacceptable.
- Rich content and well researched: I would prefer articles with at least 1200 words, but that doesn’t mean that you can ramble something and make the word count. It should have information others can use. That is, rich content is a solution to a problem such as how to use focus points in a camera, or how to use the exposure settings. It must be well-researched. Don’t stuff words and sentences to increase word count.
In short, what I am looking for are articles or information that solve a problem in digital photography. Good research on this would help you to write an article of that sort.
Types of articles that are immediately rejected (without an acknowledgment)
You can save your time by avoiding waiting for my response to your pitch if your article is something like this
- An article that has just words with no meaning for getting backlinks.
- If your article’s sole purpose is to get backlinks
- Anything that is not in the list of articles with a high acceptance rate.
How to pitch your ideas? — The format you should use to contact me to publish your article.
I get different types of emails on guest posting. Some are good, as in, they directly send the article which would help me to take a look at them in the first go, reducing considerable email exchanges times. But some are bad, as in, “hey, I want to publish an article let me know if you are interested”. Kindly avoid such type of articles because I want to publish articles, but I want to know how good they are.
So you can cut to the chase by either giving me a pitch — a brief idea about the content of your article — or directly send the article if you think it fits ShutterStoppers.
There is no particular format like forms or applications.
What happens if I accept an article?
If I like your article, it doesn’t mean that I would publish it straight away. I would review it first and before publishing, I would ask you to send your short bio and a profile photograph. Readers feel more connected to the article if they could ‘see’ the author.
That’s all about publishing on ShutterStoppers. I hope I have answered all your possible questions. If you have more questions, feel free to contact me.