Google makes a change that can help the best content get found more easily
There’s always been value in Google News.
This is the case because I’ve used Google News numerous times for press releases by properly optimizing the release for keyword phrases.
After distributing the search engine optimized press releases to sites like PRLog.com, I’ve seen the press release get included in Google News for the keyword phrase it was optimized for.
Now, changes have been announced to the Google News section, which are designed to highlight standout content. What is standout content? Content lists it as “critical types of coverage” which includes, “exceptional original reporting, deep investigative work, scoops and exclusives, and various special projects that quite clearly standout.”
To properly highlight this content, Google recommends putting a new tag in the HTML header of the article so Google News recognizes it as ‘Featured’ content. If Google deems it to be valuable content, it may show the article on the Google News homepage and News Search results.
The tag you should add to your featured articles is:
<link rel=”standout” href=“http://www.example.com/scoop_article_2.html” />
This tag will not show up to readers. Instead, it will only be seen by Google’s automated systems.
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Suggestions for using the standout content tag
In Google’s release about the standout content tag, it states two important things.
First, the release says, “Standout Content tags work best when news publishers recognize not just their own quality content, but also the original journalistic contributions of others when your stories draw from the standout efforts of other publications.”
Then it states, “Linking out to other sites is well recognized as a best practice on the web, and we believe that citing others’ standout content is important for earning trust as you also promote your own standout work.“
It seems that the standout content tag may become a part of the algorithm worth paying attention to. Time will tell, but using the tag to present your best content, and the best content of others, may help in receiving higher page rankings in search results.
If you are planning on using the standout content tag, make sure to add it no more than seven times per week to your original content. If you use it more than seven times per week, its relevancy may diminish, according to Google. However, you are able to add it to feature the work of others as much as you’d like.
For more on this new initiative by Google, take a look at the announcement.