Consistent history of creating original news

In the digital age, Google shapes how information flows and how visible it is. Its algorithms and selection criteria greatly influence the news we consume and how we view the world.

Danny Sullivan, in his article, revealed that websites are automatically considered for Google News and news surfaces in search. To qualify, sites must produce relevant content that demonstrates:
a) high levels of expertise, authority, and trustworthiness,
b) a consistent history of creating original news-related content, and
c) adherence to Google’s News policies.

Daniel Waisberg, in a video from May 15, 2023, confirmed that a consistent history of producing news-related content is a crucial factor in displaying content on Google News.

Google News SEO Best Practices

A “consistent history of producing news-related content” implies that a website or publisher has a track record of regularly creating and publishing news-related content. This criterion helps Google determine a site’s eligibility for appearing in Top Stories or the News tab.

What does it mean to have a consistent history of creating original news-related content?

The phrase “original news-related content” typically means content such as news articles, blog posts, podcasts, or videos that:

  1. Contains information that is newly discovered or reported firsthand by the content creator. It is not just summarizing or re-reporting news that has already been published elsewhere.
  2. Covers current events, issues, or topics of social interest. So it relates to news, journalism, or matters of public interest in some way.
  3. Is created by the individual or organization publishing the content. It is not just aggregating, curating or distributing content created by others.
  4. Provides some additional value or analysis beyond just a basic news headline. There is some depth, context, insight, commentary, or opinion offered in the content.

So in short, “original news-related content” is journalistic material that originates with the publisher, reports on newsworthy topics, and offers more than just a superficial look at headlines or newsbits. The exact form can vary – it could be reported news articles, thought-provoking op-eds, in-depth podcast interviews, documentaries, etc. But the key is that it is originally created content that meaningfully contributes to news media and public discourse.

The length of a ‘long period of time’ can vary depending on the context and personal interpretation. It could be a few weeks, months, or even years. News that is “regular for a long time” suggests a consistent, frequent and prolonged period of coverage of a particular issue, topic or story over several weeks, months or years that establishes an ongoing pattern of coverage and commitment of resources by the news organisation. The exact thresholds for “regular” and “long” may vary depending on the context, but both imply a substantial period of time and frequency of coverage.

Sites created less than six months ago are considered as new by the algorithm. Typically, such sites have no traffic from Google News. On this basis, a ‘long period of time’ is considered to be at least 6 months in a row. This is because Google News wants to ensure that the sites it includes are publishing high-quality, original content on a consistent basis. Sites that are only publishing content sporadically are not considered to be publishing high-quality content, as they may not be able to maintain a consistent level of quality over time.

Once a site has been publishing for at least 6 months, it can be considered for inclusion in the Google News index. However, it is important to note that there is no guarantee that a site will be included in the index, even if it meets the minimum requirements. Google News uses a complex algorithm to determine which sites are included in the index, and this algorithm takes into account a variety of factors, including the quality of the content.

Importance of a consistent history of original news content creation

In the context of news production, “consistency” encompasses more than just regular publication. It signifies a dedication to upholding journalistic standards and ethics, including fact-checking, proper attribution, and issuing corrections when necessary. Additionally, it involves providing readers with newsworthy, relevant, and timely content.

Google does not specify a minimum number of articles per day or week that a news website needs to publish. However, to be considered a consistent source of news, it should be publishing new articles on a reasonably frequent basis, at least a few times per week. Publishing just one or two articles a month is unlikely to be sufficient.

Most of the articles should contain original reporting, not just aggregated or copied content from other sources. Articles should be factually accurate. Plagiarized content would not meet Google’s standards.

The articles should provide insight, analysis, and context on current events, not just brief snippets. In-depth reporting and investigative journalism is viewed favorably.

News sites that commit to these principles enjoy numerous advantages. They are more likely to appear in Google News feeds and, over time, establish their brand as a reliable and trustworthy news source.

This commitment to consistency has profound implications for news sites. Firstly, it promotes the employment of dedicated journalists and reporters, encouraging a culture of original content. Such dedication inherently discourages reliance on aggregated or sponsored content, which often undermines the perception of authenticity.

Secondly, a consistent history of producing news-related content motivates news sites to specialize in specific topics, beats, or areas. This focused approach fosters niche expertise and, in turn, creates a unique authority that provides a competitive edge in a crowded digital news landscape.

The consistent production of original news requires more in-depth coverage, extending beyond basic news briefs to encompass analyses, explainers, features, and investigative reports. This comprehensive approach is vital for satisfying a readership increasingly sceptical of superficial reporting and clickbait headlines.

On the other hand, an inconsistent history has stark consequences. Such news sites not only risk losing visibility in Google News feeds, but also jeopardize their credibility among discerning readers. In an era of misinformation and “fake news,” trust is an invaluable asset for news organizations.

The distinction between a consistent and non-consistent history lies not only in the quantity but also the quality of output. The former signifies a profound commitment to journalism’s core tenets, establishing a reputation for integrity and expertise. In contrast, the latter suggests a fleeting, opportunistic approach to news coverage, eroding public trust and potentially endangering long-term viability.

Ultimately, the importance of a consistent history of producing original news-related content goes beyond Google’s algorithmic preferences. It embodies the fundamental principles of journalism in the digital age, fostering trust with readers and contributing meaningfully to human understanding.

The message for news sites is clear: a consistent history of producing original news-related content is not merely a strategy for Google News success; it is a blueprint for journalistic integrity, reader trust, and long-term brand credibility in the digital age.

By John Morris

John Morris is an experienced writer and editor, specializing in AI, machine learning, and science education. He is the Editor-in-Chief at Vproexpert, a reputable site dedicated to these topics. Morris has over five years of experience in the field and is recognized for his expertise in content strategy. You can reach him at [email protected].

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