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Write Accurate Title Links

Google News continues to rely heavily on page titles to determine ranking, and your news story or press release’s headline is typically its page title.

The Google News crawler will scan your article and determine the correct headline for your content.But, if you apply the following best practices, you can influence whether they display the correct title for your content:

  • Write article titles that are 10 to 110 characters long, or between 2 and 22 words.
  • Place the title of your article in a prominent spot above the article body, such as in an <h1> tag.
  • Match the title of your page (in the HTML <title> tag) to the title of your article (in <h1> tag).
  • Match the anchor text that points to your article in your section pages to the title of your article.
  • Avoid using the article title, or a substring of the title, as an active hyperlink in your article page.
  • Don’t include a date or time in your article title.Don’t include a leading number in the anchor text of the title.

Write High-Quality Snippets

Google News displays a small portion of an article on their homepage and in search results to give users a preview of an article before they click it. To determine what text to include, their crawler reads each article’s code for body text near the article’s headline.

For news sites, generating an accurate and unique description for each story should be relatively easy: since each article is hand-written, it takes minimal effort to add a one-sentence description.

Include Photos and Videos

Photos and videos also play important roles in Google News optimization.

Now, most news publishers understand the importance of adding photos and images to their stories. Google News displays images associated with articles, although it sometimes pairs relevant images with articles from different sources.

Here are some tips to increase the likelihood that your images are included in Google News:

  • Use images that are relevant to the story rather than logos or captions.
  • Use or og:image tags to make it clear which image you’d like to be the thumbnail image next to your article.
  • Use standard filename extensions, like .jpg, .jpeg, or .png.Size your images to at least 60 x 90 pixels.
  • Use images that have reasonable aspect ratios.Format your images as inline.
  • Place your images near their respective article titles. Label your images with well-written captions.

Other Best Practices

There are several other Google News optimization best practices, including:

  • Provide a publication date.
  • Including keywords in URLs.
  • Adding relevant internal links.
  • Prioritizing publishing speed.
  • Keeping the timestamp fresh.
  • Preparing as much in advance as possible.
  • Creating playbooks for the next news event.

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