To put it mildly, there’s a lot to know to be successful in online marketing these days.
And if you’re publishing a continuous stream of content that your prospects and customers find valuable, it’s now more important than ever to do everything possible to ensure that the original content you create is attributed to you and enhanced to appear high in search results.
Make your content more authoritative in search results.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to achieve this is by setting up Google+ Authorship and implementing the Rel=Author syntax in your site or blog.
Why do this? Some of the many benefits include:
- visitors are more likely to click on search results that look more authoritative and different
- search results will display the author’s photo
- content will be more eye-catching to users
- your content’s credibility will be enhanced
What’s more, if you’re creating great original content and others are hijacking it to their sites without acknowledging the author or the source of creation, getting attribution of the investments you’ve made in your original content has never been more important.
I suggest you do a simple search with keywords or your content title on Google. The results may be alarming but also enlightening for the growing need to ensure credit for your work in an authoritative and credible way.
As a recent article in SearchEngineLand points out, Google has made changes on acknowledging ownership of content that aligns with the Google Panda update. Google Authorship allows the search engine to match up content with its author via his or her Google+ profile, which then appears in search results, like the example below:
The author visual to the left of the search results indicates that it is an authorship result. The image and author name is clickable and it takes users to the author’s Google+ profile.
Start building a central Social Hub for your content.
Linking to the author’s Google+ profile provides a number of advantages including:
- a central place to share more information about the author
- additional information about the author’s company
- additional locations where the author’s content can be found online
As Matt McGee points out in a recent article, “Google is giving preference to Google+ authorship search results”. Matt adds: “Google has confirmed that there’s a hidden benefit to having authorship status: If a user returns to the search results after reading an author-tagged search result for a certain period of time, Google will add three additional links to similar articles from the same author below the originally clicked link”.
Because the user had interest in the first article, Google is assuming that they may have interest in reading more material by the same author. This can only increase an author’s visibility and credibility as their results are given more preference after one of their articles has already been read.
The level of information that is currently displayed via authorship results is enlightening, as well. When looking at an authorship result, users can click “more by Author Name” to view a list of articles Google has attributed to this person.
How to set it up and put it to work.
There are a few simple steps to follow to get your Google+ authorship up and running.
First, you must have a Google+ profile and your byline on content must match your name on Google+. Google prefers that you have an email address with the same domain as where your content is published.
Next, get cozy with some code and follow these steps:
- Go to Google+ and copy & paste your personal Google+ profile URL
- Assemble the following tag/code snippet (red text indicates what you have to add)
[box_grey]a href=”https://plus.google.com/unique set of 21 numbers from URL minus the ‘/posts’ extension?rel=author” target=”_blank”>Connect with Your Name on Google+</a>[/box_grey]
- Paste the completed code snippet into every page of your blog/website (via About Author WordPress plug-in works great)
Tying your content to your Google+ profile is now becoming more important for SEO, content marketing and social media too.
Search Engine Land reports that only about 9% of all top blogs are implementing Google Authorship (using ‘rel=author’ to link to Google+ profiles) into their bylines. And with this low rate of adoption, there is plenty of opportunity to make implementing authorship a higher priority.
Success may not come without a bit of work and possibly a hiccup or two. But getting ahead of the curve and setting up Google Authorship as soon as possible is going to be especially important if AuthorRank becomes the next biggest update to affect website traffic and how content is found via search.
Are you thinking of implementing this best-practice on your web site or blog? Or have you done it and already see your content moving up in search results? Please share your experience!