Claiming your original content as your own is wonderful in itself but Google has provided some added benefits:
1) If your content is seen within ranking results and Google has a high regard for your credibility as a writer your author image and Google Plus follower data will appear next to the search result. This extra exposure has been proven to heighten the visibility and likelihood of being clicked. Below is a shot of a search result showing an article I wrote and the resulting authorship enhancement to the search result:
2) It has been shown that anyone who visits your content and returns to Google after spending time on your page will then find Google providing more of your content within search results. THAT is a huge perk! (read more)
3) In #1 I mentioned “credibility” because Google needs to see that an author is an authority on the content written in order to provide the face time in search results; you could be an authority in your job/industry and in gardening (there is no set limit to how many topics you can be an authority on that I know of). The benefit here lies within the ability to connect yourself with original content you have written on websites all over the web and not just on your own website.
For example, perhaps over the years you wrote content on hobbyist sites and on industry blogs which have built you a strong reputation online. If that is the case then it would be to your great advantage to associate this writing to your Google Plus account so Google builds a better picture of your credibility which can afford you with benefits available now to credible authors and the greater benefits coming in the near future.
4) At the time I wrote this manual Google still had not publicly stated Authorship was directly contributing to how well your site ranked online. That said it is not if, but when Authorship play a role in determining where your content ranks above or below your competitors; or at all.
5) Once your Authorship setup has been acknowledged by Google you will begin to see search statistics for the content Google has verified as your own. This data is found within your Google Webmaster Tools account.
If you install rel=publisher on your business website’s home page you create the potential for your business logo and details to show up under your brand-related search terms. Additionally, searchers can now access and follow your Google Plus Business Page directly from search results. They can even see the latest article you have written if you have a blog. That’s right rel=publisher can be installed on any website regardless whether you have a blog or
not. In fact, if you have no reason to install rel=author you can skip directly to the rel=publisher installation instructions.
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