Google News is a less explored platform by news agencies and publishers. Learn how you can utilize this podium to increase web traffic using Google News SEO.
Google News is Google’s flagship content platform for internet users that want bite-size news in a well-organized interface. For publishers, news agencies, and website owners, this media is a gold mine since there is no shortage of interest in breaking and interesting news.
Simply speaking, Google News gives news agencies the option to rank their content. But other publishers who write genuine and informative content can also benefit from Google News.
Continue reading to learn more about the Google News platform, its content requirements, and most importantly the SEO practices you can apply.
What Is Google News?
Google News delivers stories right in front of the reader’s eyes on various devices like Android, iPhone, tablets, and web browsers. Google’s OS, Search Engine, and device users get new stories that matter to them, their neighborhood, and region.
It helps you and your target audience with the followings:
- Get current event news and news-worthy content
- Diverse content and worldwide news from different content publishers
- Share articles with friends and family
- Bookmark articles for later consumption
- Personalize what you want to see
Google News, unlike Google Search Engine, does not just show up any content that uses clever SEO tactics. It only shows high authority content, preferably news stories, that helps the readership understand the world around them.
Google News User Interfaces (UIs)
Being a publisher or user, you can show or get content in the following UIs:
You can access Google News to the fullest on its web app. The web app has two primary sections: Home and Country (the US, the UK, Canada, etc.).
Home sections show personalized content for you. Apart from Home, you will also find relevant content in the Following, For You, and News Showcase sections. Your briefing is the most obvious place where you get content according to your daily search habit and preferences.
In the Country section, it aggregates news and relevant content from your country of residence, World, Local area, Business, Technology, Entertainment, Sports, Science, and Health.
There is also a Settings option from which you can change the language, focused country, temperature unit, UI theme, and more.
Google News mobile app is the smartphone version of its web app. Here, you can get news articles in four sections. These are: For You, Headlines, Following, and Newsstand.
The following allows you to bookmark content or save preferences on different Topics, Sources, and Locations. Bookmarks are usually available within the Saved stories section.
Download: Google News for Android | iOS
News on Search
Google Search also shows relevant news on top of the search results. It is popularly known as the Top Stories. You can click on View All to go to the Google News page.
Such news will always be related to the keywords or topics you are searching on the Google Search engine.
Google News Content Format
The content format for Google News should be newsworthy and of high quality. For example, breaking news about politics, the world, technology, the environment, weather, and so on.
You can also produce content that is personalized and consumer-focused. For instance, news on a new line of tech products from Google, Microsoft, Apple, etc. You can also replace tech products with consumer goods, beauty products, IoT devices, etc.
You must include diverse perspectives and a deep context in your content. Also, working on everevergreentent seems more beneficial than time-bound articles.
The Google News Publisher Center
Publisher Center is a UI that helps news and content publishers manage, submit, and monetize online content in Google News through Subscribe with Google. Therefore, publishers increase their conversion chances on Google News.
It offers you the most content publishing tools that youneeded your content on Google News. For example, consider the followings:
- A dashboard for all the publications in your account: Home
- Add publication to insert new assets
- Publications section for Google News content customizations and labeling
- User permissions and Organization settings for each publication assets
- Help and support on Publication Center
Banned Content on Google News
When creating content for Google News, avoid the followings:
- Copy-protected content by other news and publishing agencies
- Content aimed at bullying, harassing, threatening, etc.
- Articles, videos, graphics, etc., that sread hatred among the users
- No link schemes
- Do not link keywords or other phrases to malware and spyware
- Excessive promotion, affiliation, and advertisements
- Promoting or supporting terrorist groups or activities
- Do not contradict established and scientifically proved medical practices
- Refrain from fake and propaganda stories, photoshopped content, and deep fakes
Impact of Google News
Google News helps you to reveal your brand and content on multiple Google products like the followings:
Newsworthy search topics will show top new stories and breaking stories. For example, if you cover Google I/O and the topic is viral, you increase your chance of ranking across YouTube.
YouTube also shows an information panel for topical context. For example, if you search for COVID-19, you might get more resources linked to WHO, which has authority on this topic.
News on Discover
Google’s Android OS suggests stories, news, and content based on user behavior and preferences through the Google Discover feature. Google News content can help you rank on this platform too.
News on Google Trends
Google Trends shows search trends across the globe. It might also pick up your SEO-optimized Google News content as Top Stories, Insights, Recently Trending, etc.
Google Assistant Delivered News
You can also place your content right on the dinner table of households and office desks of workplaces through Google Assistant. This Google AI serves its users with audio and articles on news and stories that are of top quality and high authority.
You can choose to become a continuous publisher on a certain topic to offer real-time data to Google Users. It has the power to market your brand in carousels like Top Stories, Live Blog, etc.
Google SERP has long been delivering relevant news content based on your search keyword. You get Top Stories when the keyword or the topic is viral or breaking news.
Google Web Stories
Web Stories is the Facebook Stories alternative in Google’s ecosystem. It mostly promotes tappable content, slide-based articles, short videos, etc. If your news or informative content includes anything related to Web Stories, you can rank there too.
Why Do You Need to Google News SEO?
Every publisher’s ultimate objective is to drive traffic to their websites to increase brand value and market share. You can rely on many marketing tactics, but the most organic and affordable one is search engine optimization (SEO).
Though the Google News platform has not been explored extensively by many brands, SEO can help you rank better.
You can consider Google News as one of the leading news and breaking story aggregators. Hence, when you optimize your news website or content according to Google News SEO guidelines, you get more content views on this platform.
When you inject SEO into news content, you make it more accessible by the Google News crawler and ultimately, by the mass audience.
Google News Ranking Factors
First off, Google News does not accept any ads or payments to promote stories, viral content, or breaking news.
It promotes authentic journalism to fight fake news. Hence, you need to follow its content ranking policies to become the top content publisher on Google News. Its algorithm considers the followings:
- You are publishing trustworthy content as a newsworthy article
- Your content also shows that your website has an authority on the topic
- Google News might promote your content if it is covering a recent topic, adds value to the topic, and also offers fresh perspectives
- Website accessibility and content usability are two vital factors
- Content language and location should be relevant to the user
- If you offer high-quality content on certain topics that the user also likes, you may rank on Google News.
Various Types of Google News SEO
Follow these on-page SEO practices for Google News:
- The title tag should be the H1 tag.
- In section pages, match the headline with the anchor text.
- Avoid dates and times from titles.
- The target keyword should be in the H1 tag.
- Use image alt text, description, etc.
- Do not rewrite, scrape, or syndicate content from other agencies.
- The algorithm prefers websites that offer high content output
- High content output correlates to authority and content freshness.
- Limit date mentioning to one per content.
- Cover a topic with in-depth discussion.
- Include images and videos that are needed and highly related to the topic.
- You must give the authorship to a human via an author byline.
- Format your article for plain HTML rendering.
- The order of article format should be Headline, Image, Date, and Article Body.
- Design the site architecture in such a way that Google can easily crawl it.
- Include a Google News Sitemap to help Google Bot index your content.
- Use structured data to boost the chance of the article appearing as a rich snippet.
- Google prioritizes AMP for carousels, so consider AMP.
- Try to get HTTPS certification. Non-HTTPS can penalize your ranking.
Google News SEO Tips and Tricks
Perform a robust keyword search to discover more than 85% of news keywords for coverage.
Precise Article Title
The article title would be between 10 to 110 characters consisting of 2 to 22 words. The title should clearly explain the whole article. Any disambiguation or diverting from the topic may penalize your content.
Standard Article Length
Google’s algorithm rewards publishers who produce the best content they can. Short-form content may miss out on important details so try to expand your content.
Ensure you include an SEO title and Meta Description when uploading the content. These function as content snippets. The user determines if the content is useful or not by reading the snippet.
Google News SEO Tactics
Several experts of Google News observed that evergreen content ranks frequently on this platform. Hence, create evergreen content on a topic. Then, publish new and time-bound articles on the same topic and create a backlink to the evergreen content.
You need to cover a viral or breaking story as fast as you can. You may create short-form but authoritative content initially. Once the content gets traction, you can keep updating it.
You must create a perception around you that you have published high-quality content consistently.
Create a layer of stories by publishing 3 to 4 more pieces of content on the same topic as updates once you cover a piece of breaking news. Do not forget to interlink all this content.
URLs and Headlines
Content URL and headline should match the standard SEO guidelines for any website.
Cover more longtail stories to increase website authority and get featured in Top Stories. Such credibility will help you outcompete others when covering breaking news.
Content History From Google Trends
Watch out the Google Trends frequently to get trending content ideas.
It is unofficially mandatory to use relevant, possibly original, genuine, and high-quality graphics, images, photos, videos, audio, etc., with your content.
Google News and EAT
EAT is a crucial Google content creation guideline that publishers should follow. It is not a ranking factor, but it influences Google’s algorithms greatly. Hence, you can not miss out on EAT when practicing Google News SEO. EAT means the followings:
- The level of expertise(E) of a content creator or publisher
- The level of authority(A) of content or its host website
- The degree of trustworthiness(T) of a website, author, or content
When your website and content display a great user interface and follow Google’s content standard, your content gets a better EAT score than your competitor. To rank on a Google News-like platform, a greater EAT score is a must.
You can increase EAT by recruiting an industry expert for content creation, optimizing the published content for HTML tags, adding value to the content, and owning a high-authority website.
Content publishers, news agencies, and website owners need to focus on external content publishing platforms more than just their own web pages. Google News is one such platform that requires your immediate attention.
Follow the Google News SEO tips, tactics, and best practices mentioned above to start ranking on the Google News app and web app.
You may also be interested in Google Web Stories.