3 Steps to Increasing Your Google Author Rank & Why it Matters
What I’m Doing to Get in Front of Google’s Authorship Curve
Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Google, made headlines recently when he said “Authorship” would be the most game-changing shift in search-marketing to date. And that’s saying a lot considering recent Panda and Penguin updates that have already transformed the organic marketing landscape.
If Schmidt is right (and he probably is) the idea of authorship and author rank is something you will really need to understand if you plan on getting traffic from search-engines over the next few years. If you’re not familiar with Google Authorship, I recommend reading these articles first to get up-to-speed with the implications of the change:
What is Author Rank? – The best explanation of author rank I’ve found written by AJ Kohn of BlindFiveYearOld.com
Google Authorship and the Fast Track to Better Rankings: Case Study – Awesome case study by fellow Minnesotan Jeff Saur of Jeffalytics.com.
If you are familiar with Google Authorship then you’re aware of the dangerous implications these changes will have on content without a verifiable author.
This is scary stuff. But what should you be doing to prepare for this shift? In the remainder of this article, I’ve outlined the three things I did to get ahead of this change with my own blog. Do you agree with the steps I’ve taken?
Step 1: Established Rel=Author with My Blog
Admittedly, this is a no-brainer for anyone reading this article. I signed up a Google+ account and associated the rel=author tagging into the code to my blog. As a result, I’ve gotten rich snippets published within the search results (see screenshot below) simultaneously sending a signal to Google that I am the official source of this content.
If you’re not sure how to set this up for your own website or blog, check out this tutorial.
Step 2: Increasing My Author Rank
My plan for building up my author rank begins by contributing guest posts to established marketing blogs. No Ezine articles or Squidoo lenses here. Only real websites with real audiences will be considered to try to get my name associated with top tier blogs only.
Also, I’ve been linking to my blog URL and Google+ profile within the byline of each guest post when possible. This is a basic tactic, but it’s helped me to gain a few additional Google+ followers as a result, which probably boosts my author rank a little further.
Step 3: Changed My Guest Post Guidelines
I’ve always had restrictions on the type of content that was eligible to be published on my blog. The content was required to be well written, at least 450 words in length, and on topic. But based the increased importance of authorship, I’ve added a new requirement. Contributors must follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+ to be considered for publication. No exceptions.
If you run a blog of your own, you’re probably used to receiving the occasional request to publish a post on your site. More often than not the request comes from a sketchy looking email address like the one I received from someone named Mandy Pantinkin. Either the famous actor from the hit drama Homeland moonlights as a guest blogger or this is a made up name. I’m assuming the later is true.
By requiring guest bloggers to follow you on social media, you are validating the author is a real person. After all, how many folks that write guest posts don’t have a social media profile? The ones that aren’t real people usually.
How are you adapting?
You now know the three things I’ve done to react get in front of Google’s growing preference for content that can be attributed to an individual. Do you agree with my thought process? If not, how are you preparing for the inevitable changes?
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