Google News SEO: Rank First to Stay Ahead of the Game
The world moves fast. Just ask airlines or hotel owners who were planning a busy 2020 season before COVID hit. Or ask any business that has suffered a large-scale data breach in the past few years.
This speed is just a fact of life, but it doesn't have to be a problem for SEO marketers. In fact, thanks to Google News, bloggers, journalists, press release writers, and social media professionals can respond to current events and attract attention.
But how can you harness Google News to capture clicks in an ever-changing world? Let's find out more.
What Google says about rising up the News rankings
The first place to look when investigating how to dominate Google News SEO is pretty obvious: Google itself. The creators of News want users to benefit as much as possible, and the Webmaster blog regularly offers guidance and updates regarding best practices, including:
1. Mark up content with the Indexing API
If you are using video to cover current events or new releases, it's essential to make your pages as readable as possible for Google's crawler. Using the Indexing API for streaming content is a must, as it lets you inform Google when new content arrives. The crawler can then get to work, indexing new videos as they are posted.
2. Build and test efficient AMP pages
AMP pages let you connect rapidly with mobile users via News, but they are much more effective when you mark them up properly via structured data. So pay attention to what lies underneath articles about trade shows or sports live blogs, and give Google the data it needs to push your content up the rankings.
3. Flush the AMP cache regularly
Google also advises streamers and live bloggers to send AMP cache deletion requests at regular intervals (or as often as possible, really). That way, Google can flush the user's AMP cache and be ready for a batch of new content - ideal for responding to fast-changing events.
4. Listen to Google's News advice
More broadly, Google recommends that users create "fresh", "diverse", "relevant", and "original" content. You should be doing most of that anyway, but it's a good idea to refocus every now and then and check that your News submissions fit Google News SEO requirements.
What else can Google News users try to boost their rankings?
Google's own advice isn't the end of the story when it comes to Google News SEO, and there are some key points that also need to be kept in mind when trying to harvest maximum visits. Here are some that could be game-changers:
1. Match Google Trends to News
Although originality and freshness are vital, good old fashioned keyword research is also essential to master Google News SEO. So dive into Google Trends before publishing your articles or informative blogs, and make sure you know exactly what people are searching for. And be sure to use the "News Search" option on Trends. It will deliver much more relevant data.
2. Make a strong first impression
Google News users are not likely to have much time to spare. They tend to skim the listings, looking for articles or videos that have instant appeal. This means working hard to get headlines right. Don't just go for the first thing that occurs to you. Try out a few ideas and see them on the screen, trying to visualise how ordinary users would see them.
3. Write accessible, readable content
When people click through to your content, make it easy for them to understand the core argument (or proposition), and to navigate the text from start to finish. A crisp introduction, clearly signposted paragraphs, and snappy subheads always help.
4. Include visuals with your articles
Google News doesn't just deliver headlines and short content summaries. Many articles also show up with images attached, and these images can often determine whether people click through or not. This makes it important to choose photos wisely, taking quality and relevance into account.
Become more responsive than ever by fine-tuning your Google News SEO
If your customers move fast, you need to move fast too. Many sales are made by businesses that latch onto current trends. And in the SEO world, Google News is a great way to do so.
As we've seen, there are various technical and practical things to consider when working on Google News SEO content. And having high-quality writing skills is definitely one of them. If you want to rise up the News rankings, get in touch with greatcontent, and our team will find a solution that's tailored to your needs.
Text: Sam Urquhart
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