April 13, 2012

I Will Google You


by Shannon Milholland, Social Media Director

If I'm an agent considering representing you, I will Google you.
If I'm the editor of a magazine and considering accepting your article, I will Google you.
If I am aggregating an anthology and contemplating your piece, I will Google you.
If I'm the acquisitions editor for a publisher, I will Google you.

Elvis Presley and Bob Dylan may have crooned "I'll remember you", but they were singing in a different millennium. As today's author, we have little chance of being found let alone remembered if Google doesn't know our name.

As promised last week, I have some tips to increase your "Google-ability":

1. Keywords

Anytime we're exploring a topic, we type in words to find what we're looking for. If you write historical novels set during the 19th Century mining era of Colorado, you'll want relevant words in your titles, articles and labels. On the other hand, if your focus is songwriting and music history, you'll use those words. Be intentional. It works.

2. Building Backlinks

Backlinks are built when another site contains a url link to your site. Google constantly changes their "formula" for success but this one is a constant. The more independent sites that reference your site, the more likely you are to appear toward the front of a Google search.

3. Linking Within

Another top shelf practice is to link within your own site. Google not only measures how much traffic is coming into your site but how long they stay. Give them incentive to browse around by providing additional content within your own site of interest. In fact, this website has built a widget or gadget you can add right to your site to do so.

4. Content

This may seem obvious but your content needs to be on topic. I read blogs and websites all the time that are a rambling hodge podge of mood swing, topic and interest. Don't do that if you want your site to be successful. Select no more than five topics and write exclusively on those topics. Become an expert in your field.

5. Use Meta Tags

Every web platform has built in meta tags you can use to pinpoint your area of influence. Make these words a customer would type if they wanted to find your product. You are a writer but you don't write on everything. Make sure your top five are represented here.

6. Social media

Okay so Facebook and Twitter aren't technically a part of SEO (search engine optimization) but they are two of the top referring sites on the internet. Help people find you by having a strong social media presence.

7. Headings

Believe it or not having headings within your article will aid your chance of being found. Use headings you could imagine someone "googling" and they will be picked up by search engines.

Although I'm getting older, I'll try to remember you. Just know this has a better chance of happening if I can find you...and I will Google you.


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