Post the Penguin, Panda updates, we’ve seen a visible inclination among search engines to move towards website authority and give preference in contextual ways, where ever possible to websites with a better authority.
Website authority was pretty much a vague term back in 2011, with only metrics like Google Page Rank or MozRank to prove or calculate a website’s authority. Neither of them were visible contributors to search page results, however.
But today, we have more than one measurable factor that can measure a website’s authority. Let’s take a look.
1. Author Rank
Author Rank was introduced back in June 2011. It is a markup support that identifies articles across the web from the same authors. It matches up Google+ profiles to articles published anywhere on the web (provided they’re properly matched). The markup uses existing standards such as HTML5 (rel=”author”) and XFN (rel=”me”) to enable search engines and other web services to identify works by the same author.
We’ve seen that authorship profiles are a great way to improve authority both brand-wise and for SEO.
2. Social Popularity Signals
Social signals have become all the more important these days (Related Article), especially the ones from sharing and Google plus votes (I’ll add genuine here). Well, there is no definite guide that will give you the results in black and white, but the experiments done here and here, supports the notion that valid social signals like Facebook shares do have a higher possibility of influencing search engine results.
3. Rich Snippets
Rich snippets are always (well, most of the time) helpful for search enthusiasts. Be it a product rating or a sitelink, they help the person looking for information get the information in the shortest possible time with enriched results. Experiments have also proved that better, richer snippets get better CTRs.
4. Bigger Social Authority
Well, “authority” may be the wrong word but bigger your reach on social media, the more visibility your content gets. For example, having a larger Google+ circle will ensure that your content is more likely to show up on Google personalized search for related content searches for all those in the circle. I see Matt Cutts and Rand Fishkin all the time on my personalized search, for the same reason. I trust content from them and hence higher CTR’s on their articles.
Do you know of other ideas to improve website quality and authority?