We all know that getting noticed on the web is not always so easy, and by now you probably realise that any ethical method or tool that can help promote your website should be taken full advantage of. This is why you need to take a look at Google Authorship, and how it can be used to promote your content and in turn, your business.
What is it?
Google Authorship is a means to connect the content you create with your Google+ account. Basically, you create a link between content you have created on your blog, your website, someone else’s website, and your Google+ profile page.
Why do I need it?
If set up and managed well, Google Authorship enables you to become established as a verified and identified author of your content, and a trusted authority on your chosen topics. There are a heap of advantages to Authorship:
- Content linked to Google+ profiles is given priority and indexed faster than general content on the web, giving you the potential for better rankings.
- Your Google+ profile image is displayed beside your content by search engines. This factor alone has been shown to improve click rates, especially when teamed with rich snippets. (Snippets are those summaries of a web page that are displayed on SERPs; the ‘richer’ these are in information the better).
- The fact that all the content you create can be linked to your profile means that your identity is not in question. In other words, you are not going to get mixed up with other content creators who just happen to have the same name as you.
- Google+ can be a great platform for networking. It stands to reason that linking your content to Google+ is likely to provide some great opportunities for sharing it and for expanding your networks.
- With Authorship you get higher rankings than those who plagiarise your content. Surprisingly enough, plagiarised content has the capacity to be ranked higher than that of the original author. Using Google Authorship prevents this from occurring, as it becomes clearer who the original author is. This also means that plagiarisers are less able to bluff search engines or get away with stealing your content.
Great! How do I get started?
Getting started is relatively straightforward. However the way it is done depends on how your content is linked to Google+. In any case it’s important to ensure you have a clear head shot image of yourself on your Google+ profile page. You should make sure your image is professional but also friendly (a scowling face is unlikely to make people want to click on your link!).
It’s not mandatory to complete every detail of your profile, but it’s preferable to fill in as many fields as possible. You should definitely add URLs for your other social media profiles and the sites that you contribute to.
You also need to set up links to your Google+ account on the sites where you post content. How this is done in detail will depend on the following situations:
- You have an author biography page on the website in question that is separate from the blog and other content pages, or
- You don’t have an author biography page, but a ‘biography snippet’ that appears under your posts, or
- You have no control over the page you post to – in this case an ‘email verification method’ needs to be used.
Check out this guide to Google Authorship for more details on setting up links.
Google Authorship is relatively new, and many website owners have not yet embraced it. With search engines becoming increasingly particular about quality and trusted content, now is the time to start taking advantage of Google Authorship and establishing yourself as a trusted authority in your area of expertise.