It hasn’t been long since Google began encouraging clients to try and jump on the Google Authorship trend and they were convinced that doing so could help improve web rankings and eventually increase site traffic.
Many have indeed tried and saw the results. However, in 2014, Google has decided to let go and kill Google Authorship. Before figuring out the reasons, let us deal with the story behind this Google feature first.
What is Google Authorship?
Google thought of crediting authors who write on various topics, especially those who wrote extensively on specific topics which other writers will quote, cite, or use as reference. The articles or contents are not exclusive to a particular site or to a blog but are seen as contributions to other blogs and sites as well; thus, credit should go to the authors which include not only the writer but the webmasters and publishers as well.
Google Authorship makes sure that the author’s names are always linked and connected to the respective published content. It is done by using a hidden code; rel=author mark-up.
Its main function therefore is to track content of individual authors and analyze authoritativeness as part of the ranking criteria. This is because inside the search results, details are linked to verified online profiles and tend to rank higher than content that lacks verification.
Why Google Killed Authorship
The intention was good; however, disappointments ensued afterwards regarding this feature. In other words, it failed to actualize its promise of high rankings in search engines.
There are two possible reasons why is this so. First, there is low adoption rate on the part of the writers and publishers. There seemed to be a perceived faulty implementation which did not excuse even those who adopt Google Authorship methods. In addition, Google was not successful in automatically attributing authorship.
The second reason for failure is that it has been noted that showing authorship of content does not actually matter to users. Users did not find meaningful experience with the images and the compilation of content of specific authors, but instead tend to clutter their mobile access experience. In addition, the cost of supporting Google Authorship is quite costly compared with the benefit that it was supposed to generate.
Why You Should Not Worry?
If you are going to analyze closely, there is no need to panic as a result of Google’s killing authorship. It is not an invitation to plagiarise and steal content.
First, take note of the reason why Google killed it; authorship does not help site ranking significantly. Thus, the end of it will not affect search rankings or web traffic to your website. In other words, you can still keep your authorship markup as it doesn’t have any bearings when Google performs searches. Authorship experiment has failed but the search for original content still continues and copyright, plagiarism, and content stealing is what matters when it comes to intellectual property.
According to Google experts, this is not yet the time to dismantle Google profile as Author rank is still functional. Google has still other means to identify authorship and it is still safe to presume that high quality and authoritative content will not be rewarded. Here are some important steps that you need to do as a result of dismantling Google authorship.
How to Avoid Content Stealing
One of the biggest worries about removal of Google Authorship is content stealing and plagiarism. It is important to point out that these illegal and invasion of intellectual property activities were never eliminated the moment Google Authorship was implemented. So, it is still a matter of personal responsibility when it comes to protecting your content and here are some few reminders.
Time can only tell if dismantling Google authorship can lead to increase in plagiarism and content stealing. It never went away in the first place when Google Authorship was still active.
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