SEO Techniques & Strategies

How To Optimize a Blog for Google’s Discover Feature?

To optimize a blog for Google’s Discover feature, you should focus on creating high-quality, engaging content that resonates with your audience’s interests. Google Discover seeks to present users with content tailored to their preferences without the need for a search query, so emphasizing user experience and aligning your blog with audience behavior is critical. This involves crafting evergreen content with strong images, leveraging structured data markup, maintaining a mobile-friendly website, and keeping an active social media presence. Moreover, analyzing user engagement and staying updated with trending topics can help in aligning your content with potential Discover traffic.

Understanding Google’s Discover: A Brief Overview

Before diving into optimization strategies, it’s essential to comprehend what Google’s Discover is and how it functions. Google Discover is an AI-driven content recommendation tool that appears on the Google mobile app, the Google homepage on mobile devices, and the Chrome mobile browser. It suggests articles, blog posts, videos, and more that it thinks will be of interest to the user based on their online activity and behavior.

To appear in Google’s Discover, content doesn’t necessarily have to be new or trending, though freshness can be a factor. The Discover feed personalizes content for users based on their web activities and interaction with Google products. The ultimate goal is to provide value without the user ever having to ask for it.

Key Factors for Google Discover Optimization

Optimizing for Google Discover is unique because, unlike traditional search, it isn’t purely about keywords and search intent. Here’s a breakdown of crucial factors to focus on when optimizing your blog for Google’s Discover:

Focus on User Interest and Behavior

At its core, Discover is designed to cater to user interests. To optimize for this, you need to understand your audience deeply. Tools like Google Analytics and Google Trends can provide insights into what your audience cares about, what type of content resonates with them, and what kind of topics they are likely to engage with.

Create Compelling and Evergreen Content

Content quality is non-negotiable. Google Discover favors content that remains relevant over time and continually offers value to readers. While trending topics can give you a quick boost, evergreen content provides sustained interest and engagement. Consider including comprehensive guides, detailed how-tos, and thought-provoking analyses in your content strategy.

Incorporate High-Quality Visuals

Google Discover is a visually driven feature. High-quality images or videos that are relevant to your content can increase your chances of being featured. Ensure images are at least 1200 pixels wide and properly tagged so that Google can easily identify and display them alongside your content in the Discover feed.

Utilize Structured Data Markup

Structured data is a system of pairing a name with a value that helps search engines categorize and index content. By implementing structured data markup, you’re aiding Google in understanding your content’s context, which is pivotal for Discover visibility.

Maintain a Mobile-Friendly Website

Since Discover is primarily accessed on mobile devices, ensuring your blog is mobile-friendly is crucial. This means fast loading times, responsive design, and easy navigation for mobile users.

Keep an Active Social Media Presence

Social signals may not be a direct ranking factor, but they contribute to brand visibility and user engagement. An active social media presence can help signal to Google that users are interested in your content – a positive sign for Discover visibility.

Monitor Performance and Adjust

Keep track of how your content performs on Discover through Google Search Console, which provides specific Discover performance reports. Analyze which pieces of content work well, and use these insights to guide your content strategy.

Diving Deeper into Google Discover Optimization Strategies

Cater to Audience Interests with Targeted Content

One of the most powerful approaches to optimize your blog for Google Discover is to produce content that directly targets your audience’s interests. This not only involves understanding your current audience but also considering the broader market trends that could attract new readers. To do this effectively, use analytics to identify which topics drive the most engagement and take note of content pieces that have previously appeared in Discover feeds.

Highlight Your Expertise and Trustworthiness

Google’s algorithms favor content from sources that demonstrate expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (E-A-T). To project these qualities, provide detailed author biographies, reference credible sources, and maintain a strong editorial standard. Such practices improve your chances of being recognized as a trustworthy source of information, which is beneficial for Discover optimization.

Serve Fresh Content with a Timely Hook

While evergreen content is the backbone of a strong blog, don’t ignore the potential of fresh, timely content. If there is a current event or emerging trend relevant to your niche, covering it could give you an edge in being featured in Discover’s timely content selection.

Optimize for Engagement and Shareability

Encourage comments, social shares, and other forms of engagement on your blog. Engaging content increases dwell time and signals to Google that your content holds value for users, thereby raising its potential to be featured in Discover.

Balance Trending Topics with Evergreen Themes

While trending topics can drive short-term traffic, remember to balance these with deep-dive, evergreen topics that sustain interest over the long term. By doing so, you’ll be catering to both the immediacy of trending interests and the ongoing value of timeless content, widening the appeal of your blog.

Ensure Technical SEO Best Practices

Your blog must be crawled and indexed properly before it can appear in Discover. This includes implementing HTTPS protocol, having clear navigation, and ensuring fast page load times.

Measuring and Adjusting Your Strategy

With Discover, it’s critical to measure the impact of your efforts and iterate your strategy accordingly. Monitor your traffic from Discover in the Google Search Console, where you’ll find data on how often your site appears in Discover and the performance of specific pieces of content.

Use Data-Driven Insights to Refine Content

Look for patterns in the data—what topics, formats, or styles are resonating with your audience in Discover? Applying these insights can help refine your content strategy to better align with what your audience and Google’s algorithms prefer.

Experiment with Different Content Types

Try experimenting with different types of content to see what works best. This could include videos, infographics, or long-form content. Being diverse in your approach allows you to capture a wider audience and adapt to changing content consumption habits.

Stay Abreast with Google Updates

Google frequently updates its algorithms and features. Stay informed with these changes, as they can affect how your content is displayed and consumed on Discover.

Finishing Thoughts

Optimizing your blog for Google Discover is a proactive approach to increase your visibility and reach an audience actively looking for content in line with their interests. While Discover optimization does not rely on traditional search strategies, it demands high-quality, engaging content that connects with readers on a more personal level. Pay attention to user behavior, create visually compelling and evergreen content, commit to mobile-friendliness, and utilize structured data to enhance your chances of success.

Engagement metrics are more important than ever, and social media activity plays a supportive role. Remember, what drives Discover is user interest — tapping into that is your primary goal.

By regularly measuring and adjusting your strategy, staying current with Google’s changes, and continually improving your content’s value, you’ll be well-positioned to capture the attention of users in Google’s Discover feature and drive meaningful traffic to your blog.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Google’s Discover feature?

Google Discover is a personalized content recommendation platform developed by Google. It presents users with a feed of content such as articles, videos, and other online resources tailored to their interests, based on their web activity and device usage. It appears on the Google app, on the mobile homepage, and on the new tab page of mobile Chrome browsers.

How can I make my blog eligible for Google Discover?

To make your blog eligible, you should ensure your site is mobile-friendly, has high-quality content, and follows Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Using structured data can also help Google better understand and index your content. Remember that inclusion is not guaranteed and is influenced by the quality and relevance of your content.

What are the best practices for optimizing images for Google Discover?

Images play a crucial role in Discover visibility. Use high-quality, engaging, and large images (at least 1200 px wide) that are relevant to your content. Ensure you have the right to use the images, and they are properly optimized for fast loading. Google also recommends using the max-image-preview:large setting or AMP to help increase the chances your images appear prominently.

Why is mobile-optimization important for appearing in Google Discover?

Since Google Discover primarily exists on mobile devices, having a mobile-optimized blog is essential. This includes responsive design, fast loading times, and an intuitive user interface. Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can help you check the mobile optimization of your site.

How does content quality affect my appearance in Google Discover?

Google Discover prioritizes high-quality, engaging content that benefits users. Your content should be original, provide substantial value, and adhere to Google’s content policies. Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T) are critical factors considered by Google when it comes to content quality.

Can implementing Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) help with Discover visibility?

Yes, using AMP can enhance your chances of appearing in Google Discover. AMP pages load faster and create a smooth, more engaging user experience on mobile devices, which is favored by Google Discover’s algorithm. However, non-AMP pages can also appear in Discover.

Should I focus on certain topics to improve my chances of getting featured in Google Discover?

While there’s no guaranteed formula for topics that will appear in Discover, you should focus on areas that resonate with your target audience’s interests and needs. Evergreen content, trending topics, and content that incites curiosity or provides solutions to problems could increase your visibility on Discover.

How can I monitor my blog’s performance in Google Discover?

You can use Google Search Console’s Discover report to monitor your blog’s performance in Google Discover. This report provides data on how often your site appears in Discover, which pieces of content perform best, and how users engage with your content.

Does updating older blog posts help with appearing in Google Discover?

Yes, updating older posts can help them reappear in Google Discover if the updates make the content timely, relevant, and valuable. Fresh content typically has better chances of being featured; however, evergreen content that remains relevant over time is also prevalent on Discover.

Can social signals and user engagement impact my blog’s Discover performance?

While Google hasn’t explicitly stated that social signals directly influence Discover visibility, user engagement does play a role. Content that is highly engaged with, such as having a high click-through rate, can indicate to Google that the content is valuable and interesting to users, which could boost its Discover visibility.

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Joe Fares

Founder of UltraSEOSolutions and a Digital Marketing Consultant, a great advocate of educating beginners on the competency of SEO, and helping small businesses dominate their niche. Joe is known for public speaking on SEO and online entrepreneurship, and has been awarded by Payoneer in 2017/2018, for being the most successful entrepreneur in the MENA region.