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Google has introduced a new tag for publishers that essentially allows you to link your website to your Google+ page. It’s an interesting concept.

First, why would you want to do it? The most important reason I can think of is to help Google better identify your website as relevant to specific search queries from inside Google+. You can learn more about that here.

Two other reasons Google gives for using the rel=publisher tag are:

  1. To connect more easily with fans, friends, and customers
  2. And to become eligible for Google+ Direct Connect

What is that Google+ Direct Connect and why is it important?

Verify Your Brand Page With Google+ Direct Connect

If you’ll log into your Google+ account and search for “Pepsi,” you’ll see, on the upper right side of your screen, a “People and Pages” heading. Below that is the Pepsi brand page. You can add that page to your circles from there. Notice that there is a check mark next to the Pepsi brand name. That signifies that Pepsi has verified its brand page.

Doing that is really simple and it makes your Google+ brand page more prominent in a search when people are looking for your brand in Google+.

I suspect that this feature may not be used much now, but I believe it may very well become useful in the future. It’s easy to implement and it’s better to do it and never been seen than to not do it and miss good opportunities.

4 Responses to “The Google rel=publisher Tag”

  1. Is the rich snippet Google delivers looking for things other than what works on a page for normal search results or is the content used in same way. So E.G if a site ranked 6 in normal search, could the rich snippet rank higher with the same content or as web masters should we be adding to our pages content just for the rel=”publisher and <link rel="author" snippets?


  2. Is the rich snippet Google delivers looking for things other than what works on a page for normal search results or is the content used in same way. So E.G if a site ranked 6 in normal search, could the rich snippet rank higher with the same content or as web masters should we be adding to our pages content just for the rel=”publisher and <link rel="author" snippets?


  3. Paul, great question.

    While it’s possible on some level for rich snippet data to rank higher for a search query than other content on the page for the same search query, it’s not likely. Remember, in this age of personalized search results, two people making the same search query can get two different sets of results based on their previous search history and whether or not they are logged into Google+.

    You have to do what is best for your website and your visitors. I would not encourage anyone to create content just so they can add rel=publisher and rel=author tags. If those tags work for your situation, use them. If they don’t add value, then try something else.


  4. Paul, great question.

    While it’s possible on some level for rich snippet data to rank higher for a search query than other content on the page for the same search query, it’s not likely. Remember, in this age of personalized search results, two people making the same search query can get two different sets of results based on their previous search history and whether or not they are logged into Google+.

    You have to do what is best for your website and your visitors. I would not encourage anyone to create content just so they can add rel=publisher and rel=author tags. If those tags work for your situation, use them. If they don’t add value, then try something else.


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