Google Authorship is Dead, But Not Author Rank

In August, John Mueller as a Google Webmaster Trends Analyst told that Google had removed Google Authorship. This was a way for writers to show their profile like thumbnail photo and their little description in the article that they wrote on Google’s SERP. Muller said that Google saw this as useless information for their users and causing distraction in the result. With this conclusion, Google decided to remove Google Authorship in their search result.

The beginning the death of Google Authorship was in June. Back then, a Google Plus post with author thumbnail photo using too much space in result page and also bandwidth for mobile users. And this feature didn’t make any difference in terms of clicks. Although, Google is still keeping track of what their users wrote. This was confirmed by Google Executive Chairman, Eric Schmidt, in his book, “The New Digital Age.” He said that in SERP result, information that connected to verified online profiles is going to get higher ranking than content that didn’t showing its author. This is making users clicked the top result of Google search naturally with the help of verified author.

So if writers still want to remain anonymous then they’re missing huge chance to get better in Google’s SERP. This is what professionals in search industry call as AuthorRank. Matt Cutts said that Google is doing a better job in tracking of someone authority in a specific field, like in technology, sports, medical and many more. And Google trying to gives better result of information that authors that expert in specific field wrote. For example, if Mick Jagger wrote a music article then his page will get better position in SERP result. Because Google users want to read what an expert had to say about his/her field.

In August, Google also released a new feature for in-depth articles. Articles that have longer content, publication and author’s name will get special result. Articles from higher quality sources, like Forbes or Times, have better chance to get chosen and displayed as in-depth articles. Matt Cutts later confirmed that Google was using a form of AuthorRank with algorithm for the in-depth articles.

For SEO writers, this means that Google is tracking what you write and what author’s link to you, to improve your result in search ranking when users search for relevant keywords. And for content marketers, with Google giving better ranking for certain contents based on which articles links to them. An effective strategy to increasing you or your clients’ popularity is to employ writers that have high authority to write articles that link to articles about them. Because getting backlink from their articles can cost a lot less work than creating an article written from nothing. This means that you sometimes can pitch indirectly, and not making your subject as the main focus but still reaping the AuthorRank benefits of the link.

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