For three years Google has attempted to implement Google Authorship into articles by linking an Author’s ‘digital signature’ through their Google+ account. The aim of this was to allow authors to build a reputation as a credited blogger or journalist, thus giving their articles more credibility. This would in turn generate more traffic for the websites and articles associated with credited bloggers.
With Google constantly pushing their Google+ social platform, it did not come as much of a surprise that Google Authorship was linked to your Google+ account, however it still hasn’t helped Google+ gain any popularity and Google has even recently announced that Authorship has not affected website traffic in the way that they had predicted.
In fact latest updates suggest that Authorship has had little to no effect in increasing traffic to pages, so after a three year long experiment, Google has finally announced that Authorship will be entirely removed from search results.
Bloggers soon took to Twitter to suggest that Google had used authorship as a sinister bait to entice people to use their social network as it struggled to compete with the ‘social media big boys’ such as Facebook.
“Unfortunately, we’ve also observed that this information isn’t as useful to our users as we’d hoped, and can even distract from those results. With this in mind, we’ve made the difficult decision to stop showing authorship in search results.”
Google analyst John Mueller concluded that the complete removal of author information did not seem to reduce traffic to websites and as such the decision has been made to implement it indefinitely.
This is just another example of how Google can change their rules over night and why we need to constantly stay updated of everything that’s going on in the SEO world.