Google recently asked SEO experts who worked for some of the internet's top news sites to discuss the factors they believe most affect local SEO rankings on Google News, according to GoogleNewsRankingFactors.com.
Contributors included representatives from CNN, the Huffington Post, NY Public Radio and ABC News and others, all of whom outlined the most important factors for ranking highly on Google's search results, as well as tactics that can negatively affect a website's rank.
Category authority was found to be the consensus No. 1 choice for ranking highly on Google. The website provides the example of ESPN and sports, and how the two go hand-in-hand when people think of the top sports outlet. Adding keywords into the headline and title pages, domain authority, sharing via social media sites and being the first to publish a story rounded out the top five.
When it came to negative factors, the group listed duplicated content - such as plagiarized or scraped content - as the most frowned upon activity by Google. Vague or abstract headlines with weak keyword usage, a lack of a Google News sitemap, poor quality content and having a slow site with a lot of errors were also found to harm search rankings.
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