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How To Build Authorship As A Travel Brand

Learn how to build your travel brand and establish authorship in the industry. Discover strategies to align your content with Google's E-E-A-T guidelines.

build authorship in travel content

The advice of producing content that aligns with Google’s E-E-A-T guidelines is universal amongst SEO professionals, but guidance on how to achieve this is few and far between.

During the Helpful Content Update of September 2023, many travel websites were impacted.

I ran a small study of more than 100 travel websites, and found that more websites in travel benefited from the update than lost out – but those who did see decreases saw large traffic drops.

From my analysis, many of the travel websites in my sample that saw declines were producing lots of content and, on paper, doing a lot of the box-tick things you see on most content checklists, but they lacked any kind of validity that the author was qualified to talk about the topics being published.

The Importance Of Authorship In Travel Content

When people find your travel brand online through your website or other content, they are more likely to buy something or think about buying if they believe your brand is real and that experts are behind the advice and services you provide.

This makes your brand look more believable and trustworthy, which is very important in nurturing a potential customer through their journey and influencing their research and buying stages.

Being seen as an expert and showing who creates your content helps your brand’s image and increases the chances of people buying from you. It also plays a big role in how well you do in search engine rankings.

Factors like being trustworthy and knowledgeable help Google decide if your website’s content is good, and whilst E-E-A-T is only a guideline laid out in the Quality Rater Guidelines, demonstrating these elements lends itself to a positive user experience and helpful content.

How Your Expertise Can Influence The Travel User Journey

The journey travelers take from researching to booking their vacations is complex and varied, far from a simple, straight path.

It moves through different stages, influenced by various factors such as personal preferences, recommendations, advertisements, and budget considerations.

Potential travelers might start by dreaming about destinations seen on social media, then move on to read reviews and compare prices on various sites.

As they gather information, their plans might change due to discoveries or insights, leading to multiple rounds of consideration before they finally make bookings.

Image made by author, March 2024

Writing useful content and showing that you really know what you’re talking about can make people trust you more.

A large part of what motivates people to buy is trust, and to build that trust, they need to be certain that the information you’re providing (as well as the service) matches their expectations of what they are buying.

These expectations are not only set by your brand and your content but also by what your competitors are saying.

Having an author tied to the brand who is recognized and validated as an expert in the topic they’re writing about can go a long way toward building trust for your brand.

How Does Google Judge Authorship?

Google uses a method called reconciliation to determine whether different pieces of content across the Internet have been written by and are connected by a single author.

To determine authors and authorship, Google faces a number of challenges, as many authors may share the same name (especially if you have a common name like myself), and without clear defining markers or linking to a centralized location consistently, these signals can be confusing.

The process of reconciliation involves analyzing various signals and data points, from author bylines and dedicated author pages to structured data.

To aid Google in the reconciliation process, websites should work to validate authors by linking to personal websites and social media profiles in their article-level author bios and author pages. This consistency helps Google reduce mistakes in the reconciliation process.

This does add a process level of complexity to some businesses, as linking to personal social profiles or professional personal profiles brings a risk to the business should the individual post content the business doesn’t agree with, and this can cause conflict.

To learn more about how Google handles author identification, read this article from 2021, which breaks down what John Mueller has said on the matter.

Displaying Authorship Through Structured Data

Years ago, Google used rel=”author” to identify authors, and now Google identifies the main entity behind content through on-page signals (e.g., a clearly marked content origin) and structured data/schema markup.

You can use various Schema types and attributions to identify and label authors.

While Google only officially supports a handful of schemas for SERP decoration and features, making use of all structured data (where relevant) has correlated with improvements in ranking and search performance.

We can also see correlative improvements when visually mapping entities using the Knowledge Graph API.

Person Schema (

This schema is used to describe a person. Attributes you might use include:

  • name: The name of the person.
  • jobTitle: The job title of the person (e.g., executive director, writer, journalist).
  • worksFor: An organization the person works for (can be used to tie the author to a brand or website).
  • url: URL of the person’s official website or social profile.
  • image: URL of an image of the person.
  • sameAs: An array of URLs that you can use to link the person to their social media profiles, Wikipedia page, etc.

CreativeWork Schema (

This schema is a broad category that includes articles, blog posts, videos, etc. It can be used to define the relationship between an author and their work. Attributes include:

  • author: The author of the content, which can be linked to the Person schema.
  • publisher: The organization responsible for publishing the work, which can be linked to the Organization schema.
  • datePublished: The date on which the content was published.
  • headline: A headline or title of the content.

Article Schema (

A more specific type of CreativeWork focused on articles. Attributes similar to CreativeWork can be used here, with additional emphasis on:

  • articleSection: High-level section name(s) that the article belongs to (e.g., Technology, Lifestyle).

A relatively standard example schema for authors on your travel website would be:

"@context": "",
"@type": "Person",
"name": "Bob Bobbins",
"jobTitle": "Travel Writer",
"worksFor": {
"@type": "Organization",
"name": "",
"url": ""
"url": "",
"image": "",
"sameAs": [

Building Travel Authority

Outside of the SEO benefits, creating helpful content with a validated author profile can impact the user buying process and help your brand play a pivotal role in the user’s travel research and booking journey.

The helpful content updates have proven that authorship and expertise are more important than ever.

And coupled with Google’s Hidden Gems initiative, there is a lot of opportunity for challenger travel brands to compete for search queries at various stages of the customer booking journey – queries that have historically been dominated by the major travel brands.

More resources:

Featured Image: Luis Molinero/Shutterstock

Category SEO
VIP CONTRIBUTOR Dan Taylor Head of Research & Development at

I’m Head of Technical SEO at, a bespoke technical SEO consultancy with offices in the UK and the United ...

How To Build Authorship As A Travel Brand

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