Claim your Google+ Profile for Increased Credibility and Better Search Rank

Google+ author rank verified online profileIf you’re a socially savvy doctor, you probably already have a Facebook page and, perhaps, a Twitter feed or some photos up on Pinterest.

Claimed your Google+ profile yet? If not, you should. Although the search giant’s social network doesn’t generate the media buzz that its competitors often do, it’s growing fast. In fact, according to a recent report from Global Web Index, Google+ has now surpassed Twitter to become the second-largest social network in the world.

It also provides something other social networks can’t: The increased visibility — and attendant credibility — that comes with Author Rank, Google’s system for assigning value to content based on who produced it. In a nutshell, if Google can ascertain who you are, it’s more likely to assign credibility to what you say, which, in turn, will likely boost your standings in its search rankings.

As The Wall Street Journal recently excerpted from Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s soon-to-be-published book,

Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in most users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results. The true cost of remaining anonymous, then, might be irrelevance.

Those “verified online profiles” are what Author Rank is all about. As interpreted by Google’s algorithms, verification is an indicator of expertise and you can see it in action when you do a search and notice that some results feature thumbnail pictures and bylines of the people associated with the links.

If you want those results to include your photo and your byline instead of your competitors’, Google+ is the way to go.

Doctor Takeaway

With Google+, the sum is greater than the parts

Don’t buy into the antiquated idea that Google+ is a “ghost town” compared to Facebook or Twitter. The latter two may have more activity on a day-to-day basis but Google provides the one-two punch of search dominance and authorship credibility. If you have a blog — or produce any sort of similar online content — claim your Google+ profile, link it to your website and keep the content coming.

About Rob Lovitt

Rob Lovitt is a longtime writer and editor who believes every good business has a great story to tell. He has written for dozens of magazines and websites, including NBCnews.com, Expedia.com and the inflight magazines of Alaska, Horizon and Frontier airlines.

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