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Google’s SEO Best Practices for News Publishers

Google’s SEO Best Practices for News Publishers

Google published a brief guide full of best practices for websites that provide breaking news coverage.

Specifically, the guide focuses on tools that news publishers can use to create a data rich and engaging experience for readers.

Here are some of the highlights from the guide.

Article Structured Data

Google strongly recommends adding article structured data to AMP pages, as it makes those pages eligible for an enhanced appearance in search results.

Enhanced features may include:

  • Placement in the top stores carousel
  • Placement in the host carousel
  • Article being rendered as a visual story

Google reminds publishers that AMP article markup can be tested and validated using the Rich Results Test tool.

“Enter your page’s URL or a code snippet, and the Rich Result Test shows the AMP Articles that were found on the page (as well as other rich result types), and any errors or suggestions for your AMP Articles. You can also save the test history and share the test results.”

Lastly, with regards to article structured data, Google recommends providing a publication date so searchers can see how recent the coverage is.

Mark Up Live Streams

Sites that provide live-streaming video during an event are eligible for a “LIVE” badge in search results by marking the video up with BroadcastEvent structured data.

Google also recommends using the Indexing API for optimal crawling and indexing:

“We strongly recommend that you use the Indexing API to ensure that your live-streaming video content gets crawled and indexed in a timely way. The Indexing API allows any site owner to directly notify Google when certain types of pages are added or removed. This allows Google to schedule pages for a fresh crawl, which can lead to more relevant user traffic as your content is updated.”

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Update Google AMP Cache

Sites can force an update to the Google AMP cache by sending an update request. This is useful if pages are changing in response to a live news event.

Use News-related Components for AMP Pages

Google recommends utilizing the following news-related AMP components:

  • <amp-live-list>: Add live content to your article and have it updated based on a source document.
  • <amp-script>: Run your own JavaScript inside of AMP pages. This flexibility means that anything you are publishing on your desktop or non-AMP mobile pages, you can bring over to AMP.

For more information, see Google’s full guide.

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Matt Southern

Lead News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt Southern has been the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a degree in communications, Matt ... [Read full bio]

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