Google Closes Book on Authorship

A look back at Google Authorship. Now the story’s over, what’s next?

A look back at Google Authorship. Now the story’s over, what’s next?

You may have seen a lot of talk around the death of Google Authorship recently. Some of you may already know what this is (sorry, was), but for those who don’t know, Google Authorship was essentially a way for Google to associate content online with a particular person.

This was done through implementing authorship markup (rel=”author” and rel=”me” tags) as well as connecting the author’s content with a Google+ account.

Those making use of Google Authorship had their author names and images appear next to stories they’d written and it was believed that this would increase clicks. As well as this, there was debate around other benefits such as rich snippets potentially influencing page rankings.

However, as Matt Cutts (head of the webspam team at Google) said when discussing shema.org markup, which while not the same as Authorship, is probably treated in a similar fashion “just because somebody implements shema.org markup, that doesn’t mean that they’re necessarily and automatically a better site, so I wouldn’t count on that giving you a good ranking boost”.