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Google shows you how to optimize for Beta Discover Follow

Google shows you how to optimize for Beta Discover Follow

Google added new documentation for a beta feature that allows users to follow a site in their Google Discover feed. This feature allows users to follow a site and see it in their Discover feed when a new article is published.

The new feature appears for users in the US using Chrome Android Beta (also known as Chrome Canary).

Google has been testing this feature since May 2021, and today they have added documentation for it in Google Search Central.

The Discover Follow feature is shown to a limited number of users, but it can still be helpful to log in first and start gaining loyal readers through Discover.

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Screenshot of Follow Feature in Chrome Android Beta

How to optimize for the follow function

Publishers do not necessarily have to do anything to be followed successfully.

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However, Google recommends that publishers have an updated RSS or Atom feed that Google can use to identify new articles.

Not only that, but Google has a way for publishers to communicate which feed can be used to follow in Discover.

By default, the Follow feature uses RSS or Atom feeds on your site.

If you do not have an RSS or Atom feed on your site, Google will automatically generate a feed for your entire domain based on our view of your site.

If you have one or more feeds on your site, you can optimize your Follow experience by explicitly telling Google which feed you want people to follow for a given page on your site. ”

The feeds must be linked from the main section of the web page.

Hub and leaf lining

Google requires adding the feed to what it calls hub and magazine pages.

Hubs are the most important landing pages like the category and archive pages. Leaf pages are the pages of the individual articles that the hub links to.

If the site has only one feed, the same feed can go into the main section of each page.

Add feeds for each category

With this hub and feed structure, a publisher can also specify a specific feed for each of the different categories such as Business, Technology, etc.

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Google provides the example of a single technology article that is part of the technology section.

This article (and every other article in the technology section) may have a feed to the technology section such as:

Can add more feeds to the home page

Publishers also have the ability to specify multiple feeds that match different sections of the site to the homepage. The order of these feeds indicates the order of importance.

Google’s new documentation explains:

“Add multiple feeds in order according to your preferences. For example, you might prefer that people follow the feed to the front page, then the business section, and then technology in that order. Google uses this information to understand more about how multiple feeds are used on your site. ”

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Discover Follow in Beta – do you need to participate?

It’s not yet open to all Chrome users. But it seems like a good opportunity to get into it, even if it only leads to a few new readers, anything that builds word of mouth is a good thing.

Quotes

Read Google’s new documentation on how to optimize for Google Discover:

Follow-up feature and your site (beta)

Read the original message about the new feature

An experiment in helping users and web publishers establish deeper connections in Chrome

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