Can Google News Help My Site? ~ Ask The Admin

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Can Google News Help My Site?

Hey everyone! Scott here from AndroidGuys, doing a little guest blogging today for AskTheAdmin. Thanks to Karl and the other guys for allowing me the opportunity to reach out and talk with his audience.

A common concern with bloggers is where they show up on a Google search and there’s a good reason for this; If you don’t show up on pages 1 or 2, then you run the risk of not getting the exposure you want. Well there’s another option out there for traffic potential that might be available to you and it’s offered by Google as well. If the subject of this article wasn't a dead giveaway, it’s called Google News.

Take a minute to have a look… I’ll wait for ya.

Pretty sweet huh? It has become my preferred place to search for news and late-breaking announcements. What they do is combine news from thousands of sources and give you a one-stop-shop to find what you’re looking for. Why bother going to CNN, FoxNews, and MSNBC when you can see what each of them are saying at once?

One of the best features about Google News is that you can subscribe to news feeds. Let’s say you want to be alerted anytime a news article goes up on “Roger Clemens”. Right now, if you did a news search for him, there are articles listed by FOXSports, NY Times, etc. Did you know that you could probably have your baseball blog listed right next to them?

That’s right, depending on what your blog/site is about, you stand a decent chance of getting it listed under Google News. At AndroidGuys, we write about Android, the Open Handset Alliance, and all the other cell phone stuff in between. To compile our articles, we used Google News to gather sources of information and we subscribed to keywords that were relevant to our site. After a few weeks, we realized that we were consistently seeing the same sites showing up, including tech blogs. After reading a few of them we realized that our opinion pieces were just as well written as some of these “news sources” so we naturally started wondering how we could get our articles in there too. It didn’t take a lot of work as Google makes it very easy to submit your site as a source.

The Benefits
Getting your site listed on Google News brings you and your site a few advantages. Here are three big ones.

  1. Traffic – Number one on everybody’s list. You gain yet another place to show off your name and writing skills.
  2. Credibility – Having your name show up next to PC World, ZDNet, and InformationWeek gives off the impression that you know what you’re talking about.
  3. Delivery – Ok, so maybe you don’t have a ton of subscribers to your site. That’s okay because someone might be subscribed to Google News under the term “Barry Bonds Steroids”. Your opinion piece on whether or not he should go into the Hall of Fame might show up in someone’s inbox next to a Sports Illustrated article. Your content is pushed out to people through RSS. In fact, depending on the focus of your site, people can be inadvertently subscribed to your site. The right mix of keywords could have your message delivered to thousands of people at one time.

Sign Up
It’s simple to submit your content for consideration. Just head to the bottom of Google News where it says “Help for Publishers” and check out the topic that might be best suited for your needs. If all you want to do is recommend your site for inclusion, then just click here. It’s pretty easy from there! Google will take a look at your site and find out whether or not it might a good fit to have you in there. An actual person will get back to you if they have questions so don’t worry about trying to win over a computer’s heart.

From the day I asked to be considered, it was less than 10 days before our site received traffic from Google News. A large chunk of our referrals come from here and we get the sense that it is much “better” traffic as it is from people looking for news and not just whatever shows up under searches. Every so often, we’ll get a visitor searching the news for a term that we never even realized we wrote about. This traffic was all free too, courtesy of Google.

What are you waiting for? Submit your site for consideration! If your writing is good and your site is appealing, then you’ll be getting subscribers, referrals, and return visits like never before.

If you're interested in Google Android and/or cell phone news, please head over to AndroidGuys or subscribe to our feed! Thanks again to AskTheAdmin for letting me drop by today.