For several hours yesterday morning, the article written last week by Muriel “ Mayday, or the revenge of editorial referencing Made the front page of Google News. Several elements can explain this highlight, this post aims to try to see how an article can make the front page of the news engine and to start thinking about positioning in this engine …

Some positioning criteria in Google News…

Before going back to positioning on the home page and Google News section pages, here is some information on news referencing:

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  • The SEO in this engine, is not automatic, the site must be submitted and meet the indexing criteria, a Google quality team validates the site or not. I will not come back to this part, if the subject interests you, you can read again ” CWT Advertising & co’m soon in Google News “And” Create a sitemap file for Google News “;
  • Theindexing in Google News is very fast, sometimes a few seconds are enough to see an article appear in the results;
  • The article title plays a very important role, this is the most important on-page criteria for Google News. If you insert a keyword in your title and the subject has not been repeated too much in other news sites, you are likely to position yourself at the top of the page on this keyword;
  • Speaking of the competition between news sites, if a subject buzzes and is repeated on a multitude of sites, you will have little chance of positioning yourself unless your site is authoritative;
  • The positioning in Google News comes very fast (a few minutes) but it also goes down very quickly. Indeed, if at the time of indexing you are first on a term, you will descend very quickly during the day as new articles are published in this thematic. On certain terms that are not very topical, you can nevertheless remain positioned for several days.
  • Positioning can be improved by different off-page criteria : links to the article, buzz on Twitter and Facebook, good click rate …

The big difference with the positioning in the results of traditional searches resides in the indexing and the good positioning fast see almost instantaneous as well as the much stronger importance of the title of the article compared to the other on-page criteria.

Position yourself at the front page or at the top of the section…

Now that the basics are set, let’s go back to positioning in Google News homepage and at the top of the section. Until yesterday, I thought that only the big news sites could position themselves in Homepage, that there was a sort of selection of sites credible enough to make the headlines. Indeed, there are almost only very well-known sites: Le Parisien, Le point, Expansion, Le Figaro, Eurosport … these are some of the sites that can be found right now at the top of the page in the headlines.

But it does not seem that simple because yesterday CWT Advertising & co’m managed to position itself at the top of the page for a few hours. It was the article “Mayday, or the revenge of editorial referencing” that had this honor. Thank you Muriel By the way site If the site stayed for a short time in the A section on the front page (about 1 hour), it was able to position itself longer at the top of the section To read.

Let’s try to see what sets this article apart from the others:

  • A significant number of interactions in social networks, the article was retweeted 140 times and appreciated 54 times on Facebook;
  • And a lot of backlinks from blogs and other sites.

We can therefore deduce that even if our site does not have the notoriety of the Parisian, Le Point or Eurosport, it still has a chance of appearing in home page or at the top of Google news headings. And to position yourself in these spaces, the factors determining popularity seem to play a big game: number of backlinks, number of retweets, number of Facebook “likes”… There are surely other criteria but these seem to be decisive.

Once positioned, the maintenance and evolution of the position seem to be determined by additional criteria, I think of the click rate or even at time spent on the article after the click. Google thus gauges the articles to see if they arouse the interest of the readers enough to be maintained in home.

The date of publication and freshness of the article do not appear to be the predominant elements. Indeed, the article that positioned itself has been online for a week already, the buzz / popularity therefore seems to have come before freshness in the criteria for positioning in homepage.

Returns in terms of traffic…

This small passage on homepage made it possible to increase more than 300% the engine traffic in approximately one hour. We can therefore conclude that staying long in Google News homepage must undoubtedly bring a quantity of impressive visits.

To put things into perspective, summer being a calm period of news, positioning must be much easier.

Your feedback …

And you ? have you ever experienced a visit the Google News homepage or at the top of one of its sections? What do you think are the important criteria for positioning?

Finally, a little test…

In order to try to position this article as well as that on Mayday, feel free to click on the like button and retweet the article 🙂 We can confirm that these two factors come into play in the ranking.