Google introduced the Discover feature in 2017, but it’s still unknown in many industries. That’s because, even as a Google Search Console user, the Performance report for Discover may not be visible unless you reach a specific periodic threshold of impressions.
If you want to learn how Google Discover works and whether you can drive traffic with it, read through this post.
Let’s get started.
Google Discover is more of a social feed. A user doesn’t need to type in queries to find relevant content. Instead, Google suggests customized, up-to-date content based on the user’s interests, such as sports, entertainment, stock market, and politics.
The automated system learns about the behavior of Google users from the online activities on their mobile devices. We’re talking about things like search history, browser history, app activity, and location settings.
Google serves relevant content to users logged into their Google accounts through:
- Google mobile app
- Android devices (regardless of the browser)
Unfortunately, the Discover feature is not available to users accessing Google products via their desktop computers or laptops.
So far, Discover looks like an exciting tool to drive more organic traffic to your website.
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What Type of Content Performs Well on Google Discover?
If you scroll through the Discover, you’ll quickly notice news dominate the feed. However, according to Google, the tool features all types of content it finds helpful to users, not just fresh or news-worthy content.
In one study, SEO experts analyzed Discover traffic generated in one year to over 11,000 URLs. The findings were as follows:
- News sites: 46%
- Ecommerce sites: 44%
- Entertainment sites: 7%
- Travel sites – 2%
The rest of the content accounting for 1% came mainly from B2B, education, automotive, health, and finance industries.
How to Optimize Your Site for Google Discover
Essentially, you don’t need a new set of tricks to get your content picked up by Discover. Your content can surface here as long as Google has indexed it. So, first of all, you’ll have to ensure you follow the regular SEO principles.
Please note Discover is less predictable. You can do everything right and comply with the set policies, but there’s no guarantee that your content will get featured in the feed.
Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t generate significant traffic from Discover. A good way to look at it is as a supplemental tool. And even if you manage to direct traffic to your site, you’re bound to see changes that have nothing to do with your content quality or publishing frequency.
Generally, though, the content that makes it into the feed usually comes from sites with several individual E-A-T rated pages. E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
Besides E-A-T, here are other areas you may want to focus on to boost your chances of gaining increased visibility in Google Discover:
· Optimize your site for mobile users: As mentioned earlier, Discover is available to mobile device users. Therefore, make your site super fast and responsive. AMP websites perform better.
· Avoid using clickbait page titles: Create good titles that give users an idea of what the content entails even before they click through.
· Ensure your content features high-quality images: Content with attention-grabbing, large images that are more than 1200 px wide tend to receive more clicks. Your images need to be enabled by the max-image-preview: large setting. And more importantly, be sure to use unique pictures, but not your website logo.
· Ensure the preview content doesn’t contain exaggerated or misleading details: Snippets or images should be free from tactics that seek to incentivize users for engagement.
· Provide timely content that works for your brand: Identify the trending interests, concepts, objects, or any other entities associated with your niche, brand, industry, products, etc. Create content around the hot topics, providing unique insights. However, you’re not limited to news-worthy content. Some sites are getting constant traction because they publish evergreen content.
As a marketer, you need to diversify your traffic generation channels. Although there’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding Google Discover, it can be a great supplemental tool to drive organic traffic and sales to your site. It is only practical to start chasing the Discover clicks if you’re already practicing a holistic approach to regular SEO.