How Do I Optimize for Google Discover Feed?

How Do I Optimize for Google Discover Feed?

Optimising for Google Discover feed does not go far from optimising your content for a regular web search. However, you need to keep in mind that your target audience is not actively typing search queries on a browser. So, the pieces of content that appear in Discover news feed are not triggered by keywords but by the interests of your potential consumers.

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Today, we’ll talk about Google Discover news feed and how to get there with your content.

So, let’s get started.

Here are 9 SEO Tips to Get Your Content Visible in Discover Feed:

  • Publish relevant & high-quality content
  • Include an eye-catching featured image
  • Leverage AMP stories
  • Diversify your content based on expertise
  • Engage with your audience
  • Google must index your web pages in GSC
  • Follow regular SEO best practices
  • Leverage Discover ads
  • Track your traffic from Google Discover news feed

Now, before we dig deeper into these tips, let’s make sure that we understand the Discover feed Google has designed.

What is Discover Feed?

Google Discover Feed, formerly known as Google Feed, is Google’s take on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram.

However, instead of following user accounts and consuming content from various social media users, Discover news feed shows content from different websites based on the interest of a Google mobile app user. So, anyone who goes to the Discover tab on Google’s mobile app won’t have to “follow” an individual user or “like” and “subscribe” to a particular website just to see their content on the feed.

Instead, a user will automatically see an influx of content based on their interests – the way that Google Discover news feed surfaces content on a particular user is based on the user’s search history, indicated interests, and a bunch of Google AI. So, expect that the longer you interact with Google, the better it will understand your surfing habits and definitely show you relevant content in your Discover feed.

Basically, Google is paving the way to query-less search. In essence, they want to take their currently 800 million active Discover news feed users on a journey to discover topics that pique their interests without having to type a single word on their search bar.

How Do I Optimise for Google Discover Feed?

“So how can I optimise my content for Discover feed if the users are not actively searching for my business?” You may ask.

Here’s how:

Publish High-Quality, Relevant, and Evergreen Content

You see, nothing can really beat a top-notch content whether it’s in web search, voice search, social media, and even on a free-spirited scrolling on Google Discover news feed – people will always get interested in relevant, helpful, and top-notch content. Plus, remember that Google puts the users first – they will only show high-quality content to people surfing the Discover feed.

Here are a few tips to keep your content highly relevant and top-notch:

  • Research your content ideas and base them on the intent of your target audience – take note of their conversion/purchase journey:
    – Are they researching a product or service?
    – Are they weighing their options?
    – Are they getting ready to buy?Write multiple posts on each journey as much as you can and vary them.
  • When creating your content, respond to the specific information needs of your potential customers such as creating a blog post out of a frequently asked question or an underlying query that your customers might use to say no to your product or service.
  • Craft compelling headlines – your headline must catch the attention of your target audience and pique their interests while stating the whole idea across one line.
  • Write both trendy or newsworthy articles and evergreen content – Google Discover feed prioritises relevance. For instance, if you’re about to go on a trip or still to plan your itinerary, Google Discover feed will show you content that’s published three months ago but is still relevant to you.

You see, even though Discover feed Google users are not actively searching for what you may have in store for them; crafting high-quality, relevant, and evergreen content will always pay dividends because they are always interesting to the right people – the people who will actually buy your products or use your services. Also, keep in mind that Google loves top-notch content. So, the more you publish high-quality and helpful content, the likely your web pages will rank better in search and get more visibility in Google Discover feed.

Google Discover
source: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/9046777?hl=en

Now, the next step you need to think about is how to stand out among all other interesting content laid out in the Discover Feed.

So, besides crafting helpful content with a compelling or clickable headline, the next thing you should to do is to:

Have Eye-Catching Multimedia Assets

In e-commerce, business owners often say that “people buy with their eyes” and I think this is true to almost all areas of any business, especially in content marketing. People are generally attracted to visually appealing persons, places, things, and online content.

So, having an eye-catching featured image and other multimedia assets such as videos and infographics on your content will set you apart from other pieces of content in the Discover feed that are vying for your target audience’s attention.

You can take your game to the next level by hiring professional photographers or video-makers to showcase your brand and the stories that you create in your content. Or you can take advantage of high-quality and royalty-free images available online or buy a few photos without breaking the bank. Check these resources – Shutterstock, Pixabay, Unsplash, and Pexels.

Now, if you want to impress your target audience and build authority when it comes to visually appealing content, you can:

Leverage AMP Stories to Make Your Content Even More Visually Appealing

Accelerated Mobile Pages Stories or AMP Stories is an initiative by Google to help content creators and website owners create fast, visually appealing content and convenient experiences for Google users on mobile devices. Plus, it is a free format and available for everyone who owns a website.

Indeed, it is the visual storyteller for your site, and it promises to:

  • Engage your readers in full-screen and fast-loading experiences
  • Create tappable interactions, visual narratives, and engaging animations
  • Provide a mobile-focused format to come up with visually rich and tap-through stories when publishing content
  • Offer a wide range of advertising options to target different sets of audience

And speaking of different types of target audiences, here’s another thing that you should do when publishing content:

Diversify Your Content for Amateur Readers and Expert Audience

According to Google, Discover can learn your level of expertise on a particular topic, and it will help you develop those interests further. For example, if you’re just starting to learn how to play the piano, you might see more piano content for beginners in your Discover news feed.

On the other hand, if you’re already a skilled pianist, you will see more content on advanced piano lessons or techniques. So, when creating your web content, always bear your amateur readers and expert audience in mind so that you can still target the right people and pique various interests simultaneously.

Now, when you start getting traction from your potential customers, be it in search or Google Discover feed, take your content marketing efforts up a notch – make sure to:

Increase Your Audience Engagement

You see, Google created Discover feed to appeal to a broader audience, help you amplify your visual media, and promote content for engagement. So, concentrating on audience engagement is a must. Even though the Discover news feed does not belong to a social media category, you can still use similar engagement and promotional tactics to attract people to read your content and navigate your site.

So, as you maintain a trustworthy brand and credible content resource, take time to respond to your readers’ comments on your blog as well answer a few of their questions. Then, invite them to share your content to other platforms so that you can attract more audience. This technique will come really handy when it comes to trending stories – the more topical and fascinating the content, the more exposure it can bring to your site.

And as we all know, when a bunch of people click and dwell on your web page, it sends a signal to Google that you are offering valuable and relevant content, thereby making you interesting not just to human users but also to Google bots.

Now that we’ve covered a few content quality practices that you should start doing to get your content on Google Discover feed, let’s talk about the technical side of things starting with making sure that your web pages are indexed:

Google Should Index Your Web Pages via the Search Console

In order to get your top-notch and diversified pieces of content up on Google Discover news feed, you have to make sure that your web pages are indexed in the Google Search Console (GSC), and your content should meet the standards of Google News. Take note that getting on Discover Feed is not a sure-fire way to get your content up in Google News but getting your web pages indexed in GSC and meeting all the Google News standards are the prerequisites to get visible in the Discover news feed.

Now, after making sure that your web pages are indexed and meet all the standards, make sure to:

Follow Regular SEO Best Practices

Even though Google Discover feed is designed to target a query-less search and targeting keywords seems useless, you should still perform SEO best practices such as researching keywords to target and questions to answer. Because getting your content to the Discover news feed requires utmost optimisation and relevance – this means that you should make your content both optimised for search engines and interesting for people taking their interest journey on Discover feed.

Here are a few SEO best practices to always keep in mind when building a new web page or crafting a new content in your site:

  • Put user experience (UX) first – your content should offer enough internal links to relevant pieces of content in your site, especially if it’s a product page. So, an intuitive site structure is a big plus.
  • Make sure your web pages load fast – page speed is crucial in any web content; this affects your user experience and even your site’s capacity to convert. If your page loads too slow, you’re more likely to get a high bounce rate and low conversion rate.
  • Optimise for voice search – the questions asked by your target audience in their voice search are highly likely to be the same interests that will appear in their Google Discover news feed.
  • Utilise the Skyscraper technique – when creating content for questions asked by your potential customers; it is highly likely that your competitors have already answered them in your blog. Still, you have to create your own content and make sure that you publish an even better version with more depth and coverage of the topic.
  • Update your existing blog posts – a lot of website owners don’t realise that they have a goldmine sitting in their site. So, check your current blog posts, update them by making them more relevant and turning them into evergreen content.

Now, let’s say for example, that your pieces of content are already getting visibility in Google Discover feed. However, you still want to dominate your competitors, who are also visible in Discover.

You might want to:

Try Discover Ads if Your Marketing Budget Allows

Google has started to monetise Discover May 2019 by launching Discovery Ads. So, if you decide to take advantage of this paid marketing platform, your pieces of content will be placed on an image carousel that will appear on Google Discover news feed, YouTube, and in the promotions and social tabs of Gmail.

Track Your Traffic from Google Discover Feed via Search Console

It is always necessary to know which of your content is performing well and which one needs improving. So, tracking your traffic from Google Discover feed on GSC is so beneficial for the success of your content marketing and the success of your business in general. Start seeing how well your web pages are performing in Discover news feed by clicking on the Performance tab in the GSC for your website.

There you will see reports about the following:

  • Your site’s visibility frequency in Discover feed
  • Amount of traffic generated from Discover news feed
  • Which pieces of content are performing well
  • Data comparison on content performance on Discover vs search results

Take note that you should have at least 16 months of data from Google Discover feed before you can utilise the reports. So, if your website is eligible, the earliest Discover news feed data that you can get is in March 2019.

Final Thoughts

Optimising content for Google Discover feed apparently goes beyond the technical aspect of SEO – getting visible in Discover news feed also requires crafting pieces of content that are worth promoting, fostering relationships with your potential customers, and ensuring that you maintain a rich engagement with your audience.

You see, publishing content might not be one of your strengths, so don’t hesitate to tap on creators of SEO-friendly and interesting content to make sure that your website bears top-notch content for both web search and Google Discover news feed.

And to optimise your site in general, always consult the SEO experts.

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Author
Head of SEO & SEM - Matt Calik

Head of SEO & SEM

Technical SEO specialist experienced in creating scalable processes based on agile methodologies. Responsible for international SEO strategies. He has strongly analytical approach to online marketing supported by over 12 years of experience. Previously associated with IT, motorsport, tobacco and financial markets. He has been building Delante for 5 years where he is Head of SEO and SEM department.

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