Every now and then, Google releases an update that changes everything.

This is why we’ve talked about the reliability of Google before, and making sure we’re not putting all our marketing eggs in one basket.

But we’ve also talked about understanding what Google’s main goals are, and playing with them, not fighting against them. And in today’s article, you’ll see why we’ve been so adamant about doing this.

First, a refresh of the Golden Rule of Google: Quality is King. 

If you keep this in your mind at all times, you won’t have to worry about Google for two reasons:

1) With quality, you attract a following. You build a tribe. If Google erases you from their search engine rankings, you have something to fall back on. It’s very unlikely they will erase you though, because:

2) Google wants quality sites on page #1. When someone searches a keyword, Google wants the highest quality websites to show up first! Because if the searcher finds exactly what they’re looking for on the first go, they’ll use Google again!

It really is that simple.

With every Google update, they’ve made it obvious this is the direction they will continue to move in. As you read this article, you’ll see how by simply following this rule, you can become your very own SEO prophet.

What is AuthorRank?

You’ve probably seen it in the listings (we use it here on SEOSiteCheckUp.com too). Sometimes you’ll search for something and it pulls up an authored listing.

This change, while seemingly minor, is a big deal. Because people trust the written word much more if there’s an image next to it – especially an image of the person who wrote it. This adds an incredible amount of credibility and, if you’re using it on your own site, you’ve probably seen what difference it can make in search listing click-throughs.

Now, Google’s taking that one step further.

With AuthorRank, Google’s rankings will change based on the credibility of the author. Yes, this means popular and reputable authors will rank above generic search results. Essentially, authors can build up their own SEO authority, making everything they post do better in the search engine listings.

Now, this change hasn’t rolled out yet. But it’s in the pipeline, and we need to get ready for it. As you can probably imagine, the implications of this change are absolutely MASSIVE. And it’s a smart move by Google – people want experts when they search. So if an expert’s written an article, people are going to want to see it above other listings.

Now is the time to start building up your AuthorRank. Because by the time the update is rolled out, it’ll be too late – other authors will already have significant traction.

How to Prepare

Think of what Google currently uses to gauge website rankings. Backlinks, social media, content… the list goes on and on.

Now, instead of thinking of SEO in terms of individual sites, think of it in terms of individual authors. Here are some factors Google will probably take into consideration when determining AuthorRank:

  • Number of Backlinks pointed to pages written by the author.
  • The number of social shares (+1’s may have more influence) each author’s posts get.
  • Credibility, does the author have a Wikipedia page, featured on reputable publications, etc.
  • The number of Google+ Circles authors is in.

These are just a few factors Google may consider.

Suffice to say, it’s time to start building your AuthorRank. If you don’t already have Google authorship, set that up immediately. It’s quick, easy, and will ensure you’re ready for the future. Start contributing to Google+. Get in people’s circles, attract people to your circles by providing value.

And, above all, focus on QUALITY. At the end of the day, this is how AuthorRank will be determined. Some SEO’s will try and game it by building more shares and spam-following people in Google+. These authors may have AuthorRank penalized – something that would follow them not just on one side, but on anything they publish.

Do it right and you’ll reap the benefits.

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Lastly, don’t forget to use our free on-page SEO analysis tool. If you’re not on page #1, it might have to do with an easy-to-fix on-page tweak. Get it sorted!

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