Google brings an in-depth news section to SERPs. Authorship and other advanced SEO markups help marketers get their web content in.

Marketers rejoice! The day is finally here that Google will actually reward sites using Authorship markup for their branded content with prime SERP real estate. Separate from the rumored AuthorRank, which would theoretically give domains higher rankings for crediting their esteemed authors, this update simply prioritizes pages using Authorship when selecting domains for its new in-depth articles section. Indeed, Google is bringing a fresh element to SERPs that aims to provide internet users with broad information.

An official announcement in the Google Webmaster Central Blog reports that 10 percent of the time people perform search queries, they are looking to the learn about a broad subject. Therefore, the search engine introduced a new section that will help users gather necessary background information quickly.

This update presents an important opportunity for brands to grab more SERP real estate and gain exposure on the web. Brafton previously reported that landing a coveted Page 1 spot can be the difference between gaining or losing web traffic, as 95 percent of all clicks go to those search results. By securing a position in Google’s in-depth news content section, companies can increase web visibility (if they were previously on Page 2) or work toward SERP domination (if they’re already on Page 1).

In an effort to be transparent, Google offered some criteria its algorithms consider when determining which online content to display for in-depth results. It will look for Authorship markup, “article” markup, brand logos using the schema markup, rel=next and rel=prev for paginated articles.

It will look for Authorship markup, “article” markup, brand logos using the schema markup, rel=next and rel=prev for paginated articles.

Perhaps more importantly, the quality and relevance of web content will be the biggest determinant about what makes the cut, the blog states. These considerations demonstrate the interdependence of content marketing and SEO strategies. A well-written, fact-driven news article might not rank against other comparable content that uses suggested markup. On the other hand, an optimized blog piece will not display if the text is lackluster or unoriginal.

With Authorship finally coming to light, it’s in brands’ and writers’ best interests to create compelling content every time – and it seems the hard work will now pay off with prime exhibition.

Lauren Kaye is a Marketing Editor at Brafton Inc. She studied creative and technical writing at Virginia Tech before pursuing the digital frontier and finding content marketing was the best place to put her passions to work. Lauren also writes creative short fiction, hikes in New England and appreciates a good book recommendation.