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Are you an aspiring author?
Do you want to attract publishers and fans to your literal works?
Everything around us is constantly undergoing changes. Businesses, industries, companies are trying to adapt to changes.
The changes are accelerated due to the advent of the Internet. The World Wide Web has changed the ways we source information. Like all things, professional authors and aspiring authors alike are bracing for change.
Here’s the thing about authoring: authoring is a different paradigm. You can’t treat authoring like all other professional activities.
If you are a B2B marketer, people may discover your brand with queries intended for commercial purpose like “modern dining room lighting”. People may use an informational search query like “how to fix a laptop screen”.
Then, they may visit your site, your social media profiles if they consider you the real thing. They may change their view and travel from one site to another before making a purchasing decision. But, in many cases, a non-branded organic search is part of the journey.
Of course, searching is not the only way you can discover things. But, it is important that you invest in non-branded keywords.
But, this doesn’t remain the same with authors.
Have you ever discovered a new author with a search engine?
I just don’t think people are finding out new authors through a search engine. Authors, publishers, and bookworm aren’t looking at this aspect of search engine either. You can’t wait for your fans to find you out, especially when you are an aspiring author.
So, what can you do?
SEO has the solution for authors and writers. SEO for Authors is a more branded keyword research experience. There will be branded terms. These terms could be proprietary to the authors. They are:
- Author names
- Brand names
- Book names
- Publication dates
For example, you can come across tons of branded terms for Stephen Hawking. Just because no one can find Stephen Hawking through organic search, doesn’t mean there’s no opportunity to find. It’s just a usual place to look for B2B or eCommerce opportunity.
SEO for Authors should mainly focus on fan experience searching with their branded terms.
So, how can an author start his or her own SEO campaign?
Below is a list of steps an author can follow to start their own SEO campaign:
Optimize Your Professional Website for General Searches
As an author, you understand the importance of keeping publishers and prospective fans within your reach. You should keep publishers on your professional platforms (website, social, etc.). This will prevent releasing unwanted traffic to third-party sites.
The first and foremost objective of running an SEO campaign is to be visible for your own literal works.
For example, let’s use one of the most popular authors of late, Stephen Hawking. Once you ask Google for Stephen Hawking’s literal works, Google will provide the list of books front and center. You also notice that Stephen Hawking features only one result.
And, the rest goes to a third party site. This is a failed attempt to drive more prospective fans to their site.
Here is an example website of #1 Newyork Timbestsellerer Paula Hawkins.
You can optimize the results for clicks by linking likely user intent keywords with their behavior in the SERP. You can take advantage of Moz SEO Grading Tool. Using this tool, I came up with the following:
- The listing should align with most likely user intent keywords
- The URL should be concise and useful
- It should promise something exclusive that fans could benefit from (a discount on your upcoming books, greet and a meet-up with you, etc.)
The findings will be helpful for driving fans to your website from a third party site.
Create Pages for Individual Shows regarding Information on Your Books
There will be certain pages regarding your authored works. You may try creating an individual page for each of the literal work. Each of the literal work can represent your individual show. Each page reserved for individual work can be useful for getting found in the search results.
The SERP may be loaded with:
- Complete information on your authorship
- Your complete address
- Knowledge graph card
- 7 more normal organic results some with extra links and date snippets and extra links
- Don’t Ignore HTML Header Tags
Your website will full of articles. The articles will contain headers and sub-headers. Many blog authors increase the text size and bolding letters, it’s a rather ineffective procedure.
Avoid doing this. Use HTML header tags. HTML header tags will make Google understand what hierarchy your content is designed.
Make Your Website Responsive
Mobile phone devices account for more than 50% of searches. Google downgrade your site if your site is not responsive. It is imperative that your website works well on smartphones, tablets.
And, you should do it not just for the sake of ranking, but for user experience. Since the majority of the Internet users are on mobile phones, most of your fans may also be on such platform. If a mobile phone user doesn’t find your website responsive, chances are he/she will leave without interacting with your literal works.
So, for the sake of your visitors, you have to make sure your website is responsive. People are more likely to interact with your website if it’s mobile-friendly. Without a responsive website, you will not be able to attract the majority of your Internet fans.
Have Your Own Domain
You should host your website on your own domain. This will make your website look as professional as possible. What will happen when your fans see your website URL like this: www.yourwebsite.subdomian.com?
This will kill your professional image! You don’t want this. You want to have your own domain name.
With a unique domain name, people will link to your site. When they do, you will get the benefits of linking as far as search engine rankings on your website are concerned.
Throughout my experience with SEO, I have found that there is no Google’s ranking factor as powerful as links pointing to your site. Each link you have built is like a vote for a page on your site.
Do not wait for links to point to your site. You just have to go out and source them. You can find tons of link building strategies effective for your authoring site.
Publish Your Books on Authors’ Blogs for Review
If you are able to get your literal works reviewed by music bloggers, chances are you will be able to get a link to your website.
You can vastly improve your site’s rankings if you can have your literal works reviewed on a reputable blog. This will improve your site’s ranking on Google.
Guest blogging is one of the most popular ways to build backlinks. Guest blogging will give you complete control over your links. Guest blogging will help you find out which anchor text is used.
Use Book Schema Tag For Better Presence on Google
Book Author Schema is a must for SEOing your website. It not only boost the author’s presence on Google; but also apply special frames on Books and Author names on Google search which really make it distinguished.
Here is a sample of the Schema Tags for Books:
This example shows the addition of Accessibility metadata. Although these properties are not
a formal enumeration, there is evolving consensus amongst accessibility experts for
appropriate values for these properties. This example shows simple text values,
as suggested by www.a11ymetadata.org.
<div itemscope=“” itemtype=“http://schema.org/Book”>
<meta itemprop=“bookFormat” content=“EBook/DAISY3”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“largePrint/CSSEnabled”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“highContrast/CSSEnabled”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“resizeText/CSSEnabled”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“displayTransformability”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“longDescription”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityFeature” content=“alternativeText”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityControl” content=“fullKeyboardControl”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityControl” content=“fullMouseControl”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityHazard” content=“noFlashingHazard”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityHazard” content=“noMotionSimulationHazard”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityHazard” content=“noSoundHazard”/>
<meta itemprop=“accessibilityAPI” content=“ARIA”/>
<dd itemprop=“name”>Holt Physical Science</dd>
<dd itemprop=“description”>NIMAC-sourced textbook</dd>
<dd><span itemprop=“numberOfPages”>598</span> Pages</dd>
<dd itemprop=“publisher” itemtype=“http://schema.org/Organization” itemscope=“”><span itemprop=“name”>Holt, Rinehart and Winston</span></dd>
<dt>Date of Addition:</dt>
<dd itemprop=“copyrightHolder” itemtype=“http://schema.org/Organization” itemscope=“”><span itemprop=“name”>Holt, Rinehart and Winston</span></dd>
<dd><meta itemprop=“isFamilyFriendly” content=“true”/>No</dd>
<dd><meta itemprop=“inLanguage” content=“en-US”/>English US</dd>
<dd><span itemprop=“genre”>Educational Materials</span></dd>
<dd>Sixth grade, Seventh grade, Eighth grade</dd>
<dd>This book is currently only available to public K-12 schools and organizations in the
United States for use with students with an IEP, because it was created from files
supplied by the NIMAC under these restrictions. Learn more in the NIMAC Support Center.</dd>
<div class=“bookReviews” itemprop=“aggregateRating” itemscope itemtype=“http://schema.org/AggregateRating”>
<h2>Reviews of Holt Physical Science (<span itemprop=“reviewCount”>0</span> reviews)</h2>
<span><span itemprop=“ratingValue”>0</span> – No Rating Yet</span>
SEO Checklist for Authors
Still, you may find it difficult to start optimizing your author website for SEO. If you find it hard to figure out where to start, below is my checklist broken down for you:
- Brainstorm and research keywords suitable for your author website. Make a list
- Build an author website that reflects your personal brand
- Build backlinks to your website from all of your social profiles
- Add your website to Google Search Console
- Submit your website’s XML sitemap to Google Search Console
- Optimize your website’s title tags and meta tags
- Make sure pages have ample text content
- Make sure you use image ALT text
- Use descriptive URLs
- Create a Google Brand Account
- Manage your Brand account
- Use Wikipedia to promote your brand
- Use Wikidata.org to entry your brand
- Create a YouTube video channel to promote your literal works
If implemented correctly, SEO can be hugely beneficial for marketing your books, article, and literal works. In this article, I discussed how an aspiring author can start their own SEO campaign.