Matthew Carter
Hello friends, my name is Matthew Carter. I’m a professional link builder for a large SEO agency in New York City.


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Try to use the same url in both places, it looks like you used with and without www.

Author Rank is also relatively new, which means the proactive amongst us have a great opportunity while the SERPs aren’t yet saturated with author profiles yet. Additionally, it’s highly likely your competitors haven’t looked into Author markup yet.

Thanks Dave. Sorry though, are you saying if I write a guest post on a 3rd party site I need to include “mailto” but not “rel=author”? I don’t understand this part…

Obtaining high Author Rank can be the difference between your niche content being ranked above that of your competitors.

We wanted to provide the most flexible rank checking to our users, so we let you control how frequently we check the SERPs for changes to your ranking.

The future.

Dave, do you think that author rank has moved from a testing stage into the main algorithm yet?

With Author Rank, Google wants to make it easier for users to find the work of specific writers, and leverage its ability to use authors as an element for ranking pages and sites.

On the off chance you’re not yet on Google Plus, your first step to implementing Author Rank is to create an account there.

The first I really heard about this approach was at Pubcon 2011 where none other than Google Senior Engineer Matt Cutts said during his keynote:

Of course, it’s up to you to curate and moderate your own site’s content. You might consider some editorial changes, making updates to the post to make it evergreen or if it’s really not quality content then you would want to remove it and 301 to a better post on the topic.

More to the point, by being the author of high quality content on high quality third-party sites, you can use the author markup to link back to your author page and have the trust come in that way.

If you blog in multiple places, add any blogs for which you’ve written to the “Contributor To” section of the “About” page. Then use the authorship markup rel=”me” and rel=”author” to link your content or author page to your Google+ profile. Follow Google’s instructions for implementing.

This new approach to creating domain/page authority will hopefully be less open to manipulation in the way that link building and some forms of structured data have become.

Google has given Internet marketers a new way to prove page quality and authority. It’s Author Rank, and you can still get in on the ground floor.

How Author Rank works.

It’s not ‘author rank’ it’s ‘quality rank!’ Much of the well written content you read online is written by professional ghostwriters, and a vote for well-written content is not for the author but for the usefulness or quality of the site.

If I find interesting, useful content that could be written better, or find well-written rubbish, I know where my vote would go! Perhaps I am arguing semantics, but people vote on interest, relevance and usefulness, and not on the quality of writing by the authors.

For example, when searching for an app for tracking follows/unfollows on twitter, I can see that one site in particular has been recommended to me.

Here’s how Google describes the concept (writing in a patent for Agent Rank):

The term ‘Author Rank’ is badly phrased. ‘Authority Ranking’ might be more accurate!

It’s not just a case of signing up to Google Plus, getting lots of people in your circles and vice versa and sharing content. It’s more about getting involved in the right circles/niches, sharing quality content and writing quality content of your own that is worthy of a share.

How to implement Author Rank.

Hi Greg! This is an older guest post and I’m not sure Dave’s around to address your question, so I thought I’d jump in. The short answer is that rel=author is the way to go for guest posts. Authorizing via email address is an option for those who are only writing on one main blog. Hope that helps!

That’s really helpful, thanks!

Very cool post and i agree that the way we are heading, becoming a verified and “authoritiative” author will be almost mandatory in order to rank. We are obviously not there yet, but we are definitely heading in that direction.Google definitely wants to get rid of no names. Also a nice little picture cant hurt CTR 🙂

“The name of the writer can be used to influence the ranking of web search results by indicating the writer responsible for a particular content piece … Assuming that a given writer has a high reputational score, representing an established reputation for authoring valuable content, then additional content authored and signed by that writer will be promoted relative to unsigned content or content from less reputable writers in search results.”

Oooh, just what I want as a professional online writer. More tracking by Google so I can be sold to. No thanks.

Table of Contents.

When someone is seeing an authorship snippet on the SERP, which is the primary impact of using authorship markup and also the biggest contributor to improved Click through rate, there’s nothing qualitative there for someone to judge your content by their other works. Yes, if they read the article and return to the SERP, they will be displayed other articles that person has authored but that’s after they’ve read your content.

If you’re consistent, you will see the rewards.

Many writers resist categorizing their website pages, blog posts and books, though, and so haven’t done the work to find their niche. They avoid SEO because they actually don’t like being categorized, or narrowing down into their niche. They’d rather keep things vague.

You can use keyword tools but the easiest and best way is to check Google and Amazon’s suggestions and related searches when you start typing your keywords.

Your job is to categorise your book and isolate good keywords and key phrases to describe your work to those who are most likely to be interested. Your page name (Title Tag) should match what’s on the page or Google will sink your site in search engine results and your reader will feel confused, or worse, cheated.

Social media play a lesser role in SEO. Backlinks and optimized on-page content are the most important ranking factors to focus on.

SEO for Authors: Blogging and Podcasting.

You glance past independent distribution as if it is a mere trifle. Publishing independent of a large distributor (Amazon, IngramSpark, Apple Books, etc.) is no mere trifle. Independent publishing and distribution of novels is a VERY complex and DANGEROUS undertaking. It is as risky as opening a restaurant (80% of new restaurants fail within 5 years of opening). It also completely eliminates any possibility of retail or library sales and significantly throttles down international sales.

You can sell from your site by ordering POD books to your home. You don’t even have to stock inventory, just note they’re being backordered and order them as your customers purchase (just be clear about shipping times). There are lots of options besides Shopify, WooCommerce being a major one.

I am so sorry, but I violently disagree with you! NOBODY sells novels from their own website! Not Stephen King, not Nora Roberts, not mid-list authors like Mark Dawson (who is so good at book marketing that he makes as much money selling his expertise as he does from his novels). NOBODY.

The optimum length for a blog post to get noticed by Google is 900-1300.

Define additional keywords from synonyms, variations and abbreviations.

It’s not as puzzling (or boring) as it seems and you can greatly improve your SEO without getting bogged down. It’s very possible to move your website, or books pages, from page three or lower in a search by simply changing your page titles in line with the words people are actually using to search out books like yours.

Internal links are a good way to get readers to spend more time on your site by encouraging them to navigate through your website, one click at a time. Web visitors spending a long time on your website will also boost your SEO.

That’s why your author website should include a blog. New blog posts give people reasons to visit your website; increased visits help your website rank higher. You will have more pages to show up in Google searches. Plus, you’ll show off your writing, promote your book, and perhaps collect content and ideas for your next book.

Being discovered by readers on the Internet is a big part of selling books. Author websites, blogs and an Amazon presence are critical. With over 1.7 billion websites and approximately 50 million book listings on Amazon, getting found can be very difficult without attention to SEO. Search engines include Google, Bing and others. Amazon is also a search engine, where people can search for items in product categories, including books. When people search for something on Google or Amazon, they tend to look only at listings on the first few pages. SEO is focused on getting your listing on those first few pages. Note that results will take time. Don’t expect to leap to page one of Google overnight. Page one is elusive, but with effort and time you can rank highly for certain keywords.

Where you and your readers meet is in keywords and keyphrases. According to Google, the more keywords a consumer types into Google, the closer they are to buying.

What are the Benefits of SEO for Authors.

Digital marketing specialists and marketeers can spend hours arguing over search engine optimization and SEO strategy but this ALLi guide will only tell you what you need to know. The advice here will be relevant for literary and narrative nonfiction–like essays and memoir –as well as novelists, short story writers and poets.

For on page SEO, put yourself in your reader’s shoes, ask yourself these brainstorming questions (some of them approach the question from opposing angles)

There are two types of SEO that authors need to think about – on-page and off-page. On-page SEO is what is happening on your website or sales pages. Off-page SEO refers to getting backlinks from other websites — blog posts, podcasts, author interviews, book reviews.

By doing the same for IngramSpark, I can easily find your book on other websites of other booksellers.

Keywords are part of the metadata required for your book by Amazon and IngramSpark. Use your keywords in your book description and author bio on Amazon to improve search results.

Every page on your website is an opportunity to get found on the internet. The more pages your website contains, the more chances to get found!

Michele of 1106 Design again: On every page of your blog or website, include links to websites external to yours. A post that contains links tells Google that it’s an important or high-value article and should rank higher in the search engine. Even links to pages on your own website can help (a little)! External links go from your website to a resource on another website, pointing your readers toward valuable resources. Only link to relevant information from a reputable source to get the most out of external links.

On Page SEO for Authors.

Get it right and you get more reader eyeballs on your words and on your books. Which is what we all want, right?

It is not against KDP Select ToS to sell your print books wide. KDP Select only locks your ebook into digital exclusivity.

Your first goal will be to find keywords and develop blog posts around them – and/or use them in your blog. So, for example, if you’re a fiction author, your blog post doesn’t have to be focused on Christmas romance per se, but it should have the keywords in it if they appeal to your audience.

That’s really where the SEO challenge really lies for authors: understanding a book’s value to readers, then being able to sum that value up into keywords and key phrases that people actually use.

Off-page SEO tries to tell search engines what others think about your site. It has two main branches:

If you are going to instigate an off-page SEO strategy, concentrate on getting inbound links.

It takes time to see results and SEO is an ongoing practice. Set aside 90mins a week to make the tweaks to your website and books sales pages that make a difference to the search engines. Pay attention to comparable authors and titles on Amazon, Apple, Google, IngramSpark and Kobo.

Sometimes you’ll link directly to a book sales page but sometimes, especially if you’re writing for a “cold” audience, you’ll do better if you link to a reader-magnet sign-up page on your website (you have one, right?)

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