2013/07/12 00:44:49
APGvNext Sam

Incorporating Google Authorship

Google now focuses more on the Authority aspects of websites when they determine rankings. Google wants to recognize sites that publish real useful info and rank them higher.
In short, the more useful a site is, the more authority it has in Google's eye.
In a recent video (May 2013), Matt Cutts of Google talked about new algorithms being able to detect medical and travel authority sites (beginning 4:36)

Many forums do have a lot of useful content, so why not utilizing existing content to help improve your Authority?
And why not promote community content to let more people know about you, since Google wants to find and reward great content too?
The idea of Content Publishing and Marketing has been the focus of version 4 - you can now easily publish and promote content using the Unified Blog and the Community Highlights feature, without using additional software.
Version 4.4 takes this content concept further by incorporating Google Authorship into your community (author headshot beside search result):

Sites with this Authorship feature enabled usually see increase in rankings and CTR (click through rate, the number of clicks on a result over the number of impressions) .
This integration feature in 4.4 will let you enable Authorship:
  1. for select users (if you have more than one contributing users in your organization)
  2. for select forums (e.g, my knowledge base forum)
  3. automatically for all blog posts
This feature is very effective. While most people using Google Authorship said it would take a few weeks or even months to get your photo to show up, my result above (and others) took only 4 days (maybe 3, but I didn't check yesterday).
There are some forums out there that allow people to use authorship, but their implementation is not ideal, often attributing authorship to the wrong people. Google can sometimes get confused by this implemetation and original posters don't always get credited.
See page 9 in the slideshow below for more info:

This isn't gonna happen with our system, which doesn't rely on links in post.
I'll be posting more about Google Authorship with some screenshots, an interesting finding not mentioned anywhere else on the Internet but very relevant to us (I did share it on the Authorship community on Google+), and a how-to article to help you link your authorship info to your forum correctly.
Stay tuned!
Edit (7/19/2013): Just posted a step by step guide to enable Authorship (even if you're not using APGvNext)

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5 comments Leave a comment
Looks great   . You need a Google+ account to use this, right? Or can I use Gmail?
2013/07/12 15:12:52
APGvNext Sam
No, in order to use authorship, you have to set up a Google+ account. You can read more about it in the link in my post above. Or you can wait for the setup instruction I'm going to post soon. Note, this feature is not available in 4.3.
2013/07/12 16:02:17
Cool stuff! 
2013/07/15 22:12:37
Does authorship require an email address from the domain? For mysite.com, I need an addy like fred@mysite.com?
2013/07/18 15:01:53
APGvNext Sam
Yes. You'll need to use an email address that's on your domain. So yes, what you said was correct.
2013/07/18 16:01:36

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