We have all heard that “content is king” when it comes to search engine optimization. I’ve repeated it over and over again myself and will continue to repeat it, but Katie Fetting-Schlerf has written an article explaining that perhaps we are seeing a new king take the throne. That new king is The Author.
I’ve personally been promoting Google+ for over a year now, partly because I just like it better than Facebook or Twitter (although each has its own pros and cons), but the SEO value of Google+ has been the most important factor. Yet it’s not what you post to Google+ that is the key to pushing your rankings higher (although personalized search is affected by this), but rather all the content across the web that is associated with your Google+ account.
As Katie alludes, sites have been trying to build lots of content to improve SEO, but we’ve gotten to a point where there is so much content flying around the web, a lot of which is stolen or duplicated over and over again, that it is probably getting tougher and tougher for search engines to understand which site is the true owner of the content.
To help combat this, Google has been leaning toward a more personal approach to content ownership. No longer is Google happy that a website owns content, but would prefer to know what particular person authored particular pieces of content on a site.
This brings a whole new focus on the content creator or writer rather than the publisher. Businesses with blogs, newsfeed website owners, and publishers are going to have some choices to make. Do they continue to focus on owning all their content, or do they focus on publishing good content from great content creators? Google probably isn’t going to let you do both for much longer without giving credit to those that create your content.
Giving credit to the content creator may be key to the future of SEO. Google isn’t going to give out all their ranking secrets, but we can be pretty confident in that Google is trying to combat duplicate and stolen content while at the same time trying to make sure they have some of the best results possible. Giving more emphasis to the creator rather than the publisher is just one step in that direction.
It’s not all about the number of circles! If you have not jumped on board the G+ wagon yet, what are you waiting for?