If you live (and love) in the world of content management, search engine optimization, or social media then you have probably seen a series of blog posts come out about a new topic: Google Author Rank.
What is Author Rank Patrick?
This is the (supposedly) new formula that Google will use to rank search results. The new Google Author Rank formula will lower former factors in search engine optimization (inbound links, keyword density, etc) and start factoring in the credibility of the author. How will Google know the credibility of the author, you ask? Great question. Author rank will look at the Google Profile associated with every piece of content. Each Google Profile is attributed to a person. This is called Google Authorship. If you are an avid user of Google Plus then you have instant credibility in the Author Rank formula. The more social activity you have and the more circles you belong to will also be factored in to determine your worthiness as a god among internet authors. Of course with this will come the frenzy of people begging for plus ones for all of their content. We saw this happen with Facebook, and now it will happen on Google Plus to boost Author Rank.
So what is the problem Patrick?
The challenge (never a problem) is this: “Author Rank” is not a real thing yet. It exists in the minds of bloggers only, and one obscure Microsoft patent. Matt Cutts hasn’t done a video on it, and it is not something you are going to find in any Google help pages (yet). The world of content management is going crazy over an idea. Prominent bloggers are writing posts on “How to prepare for Google Author Rank” when they don’t know what it is going to look like or how it is going to work. (And if you read their blog posts they aren’t saying anything new about SEO). I’ve been involved in many discussions where people are actually getting stressed about the topic.
Calm down bloggers. Here is what you do:
Follow the same Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques that you should have been following all along. If you follow the list below then you will be covered when it comes to Author Rank. Don’t freak out over any new magic rules. And don’t change the content management plan that you had in place.
- Write great focused content about your niche.
- Share your content in as many places as possible. Social Media and Triberr.com are great for this.
- Be sure that you are using the Yoast SEO plugin if you are using WordPress.
- When writing a blog post, link to your other pages and blog posts.
- Find ways to link from other sites back to your blog posts/pages. Don’t link to your home page.
- Write a blog post series on to increase the chance that a reader will click on your three part sieres when the see “Blog Post 1 of 3” in the google search results.
- Be sure your have set up Google Authorship on your website. Click here to watch a video on how to do that.
- Be sure that your Google Plus profile is complete.
- Be sure that you are active on Google Plus
- Repeat #1 and #2.
These rules are not new. These rules were the same a month ago, three months ago, and twelve months ago.
Moral of THIS story?
There is no magic to SEO, and the rules rarely change. You should print out that list above and stick it on the wall behind your monitor. Read it every day. Read it before and after you create any page or post on your site.
If you’d like some additional information on Google Author Rank you can also check out the fine work at the CopyBlogger site.