Get profiled, get searchable, get results

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There’s a new Google ranking signal out there – authorship markup. As we all know, Google put a lot of emphasis on the quality of their search results, and this new method of defining search rankings seems to fulfil two Google goals: to improve the trustworthiness of their content, and to give Google+ a boost.

Still in an ‘experimental’ phase, authorship markup deals with the credibility of authors, ultimately by displaying their photo alongside applicable Google search results. Here’s the catch – you need a Google+ profile. The profile supplies your photo to the search results, as well as link to your profile, and hey presto – you become visually recognisable, your articles have enhanced credibility, and your Google+ profile is promoted (along with Google+ itself).

Mischief-makers take note – sites have to be linked back to Google profiles, preventing ill behaviour, like writing a load of gobbledy-gook and attributing it to another author.

Want to use authorship markup?  It’s easy. First, add a link to your Google+ profile on every post or article. On the link, add an attribute rel=”author”. In the header, or the footer, wherever works. You can wrap it around an image too.

Multiple authors are hardly any more complex – just follow the above, linking each author post, or their author bio, to their Google+ profile. All it takes is takes a bit of coordination between authors and webmaster to give search rankings a real boost.

Did we make it too hard? Check out a step by step guide to setting authorship markers up. You can also check out this tutorial video with Google’s Matt Cutts and Othar Hansson.

We like it, and we do respect Google’s smart move of making a Google+ profile a key part of the new ranking signal. As the Facebook/Google+ supremacy battle heats up, we’ll be waiting for a countermove with baited breath…


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