What Is Content Syndication & How Does It Work?

Do you have some particularly great content? This doesn’t just mean a piece that you love, but one that is achieving great results. Your audience loves it, the search engines love it, and you are getting a lot of traffic off of this page. These are the real winners. It’s where you’ve managed to reach your target audience, and you’ve hit your pacing with your search engine optimization (SEO) techniques.

This content is a perfect representation of what your site has to offer. You want to get as many eyes on it as possible. When you’ve done this kind of work, you want to get the most out of it you can. 

What Is Content Syndication & How Does It Work?
What Is Content Syndication & How Does It Work?

One way to go about capitalizing on this piece is to consider content syndication. 

What Syndication Means For Your Content

You may have heard the term syndication when talking about television. In terms of TV, this is when a popular program, like Friends, is shown on rerun on many different channels. Similarly, for your content, syndication means repurposing your article on other popular websites.

When your work appears on these other sites, there will be a link at the bottom pointing back to your site. Generally, it looks like a sentence at the bottom that says, “This article originally appeared on your site,” with a link back to your page. 

The Goal with Syndication

Ideally, you want to have your great work featured on popular websites; pages like Forbes, Yahoo! Finance, or other popular sites in your niche. These are pages that syndicate content, have a lot of traffic, and where you will get a lot of value from them linking to your page.

The aim when you republish your content on these high traffic authoritative websites is to bring in the traffic you can’t bring in yourself. This piece has hopefully already done well on social media and the search results pages. It has the potential to reach a much larger audience, but you don’t yet have the reach to maximize this on your own. Syndication makes this possible. 

Hold On. What About Duplicate Content?

This is a valid question. After all, we don’t want other websites copying our text and reposting it around the web, pretending they are the original publishers. So why would we want big sites republishing our work? Won’t that anger the search engines? Won’t Google decide our original page content is less relevant?

While duplicate content can be a concern, particularly in cases where sites without authority are reposting your content, it’s not the concern it used to be. Many authorities on SEO have claimed you shouldn’t concern yourself with it at all. And the benefits of authoritative websites linking to your site outweigh the possible concerns people have had in the past. 

One way to hedge your bets on this is to add a “rel=canonical” tag into the header on your website. This tells the search engines that your page is the original piece of content. 

Beyond this, consider the websites you see out there syndicating their content, and whether they seem to have a strong presence in the search engines. Websites like NerdWallet.com, an authority site in the realm of personal finance found at the top of many competitive search result pages, have been using syndication as a prime strategy for growing their website for years. 

How to Get Started With Content Syndication

The first thing to do is find websites you want your work to be featured on. This may take some time. Star at the top. What are the dream websites in your niche where you’d love to have your work published? Who has an audience you wish you had access to? 

Familiarize yourself with their content. Is the tone right for your work to fit in?

Do they publish syndicated content?

Once you’ve found a good match, it’s time to pitch them your content. 

Writing a Pitch

When you write a pitch, keep it short, sweet, and to the point. Let them know that you have a piece of content you think will be relevant to their site; that it’s a popular post for you and has gained a certain amount of traffic in a particular period. Do go ahead and give them the actual numbers in your pitch. Mention how it can benefit their site; this can be as simple as that you believe it could help bring them additional traffic and be valuable for their readers. Then make sure to mention that you would be happy for them to use the article as long as they put an attribution to your site as the source. 

Don’t Be Discouraged.

This will not always work out for you, but it doesn’t hurt you when you don’t get a hit, so don’t worry about it. Just keep trying. If the site you want doesn’t make this piece, but you’re sure they’re a good fit, try again with your next hit article. In the meantime, keep finding more relevant sites in your niche and pitch them this piece. Rejection is part of the process when it comes to pitching. This is true for syndication content, guest posts, or any other writing opportunity. 

Take it in stride, keep doing your best work, and trust in the process. 

With time, your results will grow. You will build relationships with great webmasters who appreciate your work. You will learn what sites have an audience that vibes with your content. And you will know when you have a piece that could be a hit.