Earlier this month, websites and online marketing firms undoubtedly heard about Inside Search and the new “In-Depth Articles” feature, Google’s newest ranking system for upping a blog or article’s searchability. For some, this means a complete evolution in marketing campaign strategy; for others, however, this is an opportunity to publish relevant, long-lasting, and high-quality content that people want to read.
According to a piece on Search Engine Watch, Google now prefers articles that follow a specific format that matches web-crawlers and algorithms. Here is a rundown on what is expected out of an article’s format:
- Schema.org: Schema.org markups include a headline, alternative headline, description, published date, a web-friendly image, and the body.
- Logo: For corporate blogs, add in a logo on the page that is easy to identify.
- Authorship: Authorship is another feature out of Google that allows publishers to direct their blogs through a single persona. Bloggers using Authorship are easier to search for.
- Multi-Page: Articles with multiple pages require search-friendly pagination. This requires “rel=next/previous” HTML markups. Together, these bits of code help out the algorithm.
These are only a few recommended strategies to make a piece Google-certified, but in order to write a proper blog with high crawlability you need to up the content, reduce brand building PR content, and focus on “evergreen” pieces.
According to a different article on SEW, writing in-depth articles is “rewarded.” New long-form, long-lasting pieces are more likely to pop up in search listings when they are more than 2,000 words in length. Poor content doesn’t seem to help with a blog’s shelf life, which is why it is crucial to curate your content correctly and reap traffic rewards.
Evergreen pieces, according to the article, are stories relevant enough to be read two years after publishing and still intrigue and inform audiences. A few ways to shape an evergreen piece include:
- Industry Trends: Pieces written around trending information (see Google Trends or search around for a cluster of company-related research and development projects) tend to stay up on searches if they are broad and well-written.
- Keywords: Keywords are comparable to an article or website’s Dewey Decimal System; without keywords, the piece would be near impossible to crawl. Access Google’s Keyword Planner or analyze your own page’s analytical information to see which keywords are picking up the most steam.
Combined with the right topics, these two factors can play a big role. The article says that popular trending articles are often formed around headlines like Top 10 lists, pricing information, How-To guides, industry history, FAQs, mashups of best/worst articles, in-depth guides and resource information. These pieces typically take a lot of research on the part of the writer, but publishing a piece that collects views, crosslinks, and high rankings is the new norm.
These new writing requirements put a lot of pressure on brand journalists. Evergreen content requires research, fact checking, grammatically perfect pieces, 2,000 words, and active social media sharing. Sharing content through media increases its “freshness” and Google is more likely to rank it. You can do this by creating spinoff content, sending out editorial newsletters, and reaching out to industry-related bloggers with crosslinks. Questions on content? Contact us for more info.
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