Have you ever dreamt of becoming an author? Of doing readings to diehard fans at local bookstores, seeing a headshot of you wearing a turtleneck on the back sleeve of your book, and talking to your best bud Stephen King about how he became so twisted? Keep dreaming.
While Google’s Authorship feature doesn’t make you a bona fide best-selling icon, it does add some legitimacy to the content you create. In a nutshell, Google Authorship is a way for Google to display in search results who the author of a specific webpage is. This is another marketing trend that will help shape the content strategy of 2014. Just as we spoke about the importance of compelling art and copy in our earlier posts, attributing that content to a specific person will soon become equally important. With frequent changes to their search algorithm, Google is on a mission to promote/inspire websites to create quality original content and eliminate duplicate pages and spam. The below image is an example of what it looks like to be a Google Author. Looks nice doesn’t it? Apparently the vast majority of searchers think so too.
Google has found that links with attributed authors who have their pretty face beaming under the search bar have a much higher click-through rate, up to 150% higher. We can credit some of that to our natural draw to visually appealing content, but the real reason for its success is the fact that putting a face to words gives people a higher sense of trust and confidence in your work. Now you can see why attaching an author to your website’s content makes strategic SEO sense. A higher click-through rate = more page views.
I see you bouncing up and down in your chair. You want to know how you can get your overly-photo-shopped profile pic on the front page. The truth is, that all still depends on the quality and relevance of your page’s content. Make sure you use descriptive/appropriate titles for your articles. Do your research and Implement keywords into your text without stuffing them in every sentence. Google also has an author rank system that judges how credible of a source you are. The Factors that are evaluated are your social connections to other authors, your Google+ engagement, number of Google+ shares and +1s, and of course the Pagerank of your individual articles.
You’ve probably noticed that Google+ plays a major role in the Authorship process. That is how you become a Google author. You must first create a Google+ account and then link that account to your content using this page https://plus.google.com/authorship and adding the webpage to your “Contributor To” section on your Google+ profile. For more instructions on how to becoming a Google Author, visit https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/1408986?expand=option2
Now that you know how to become a Google Author, don’t let the fame go to your head. Remember me when you’re holding readings of your blog posts at local coffee shops. A simple dedicatory opening paragraph will suffice.