In this post, we will be looking at Google Scholar, how to optimise for it and how this Google platform can contradict traditional SEO practices.
Previously, my knowledge of Google Scholar was limited to my university experience and so when I was handed the task of improving indexation and ranking for a client in Google Scholar, I didn’t know where to start. I took to Google and my fellow Distillers to enlighten me. I bombarded John Mueller at Brighton SEO in hope of some directional guidance. There wasn’t a nice guide out there on how to improve presence and rankings in Google Scholar. Really, it was down to me to figure this one out.
And so, I embarked on my exploration of the world of academic search engine optimisation (also known as ASEO).
What is Google Scholar?
Google Scholar is Google’s academic platform that allows researchers to publish papers and facilitates academic research and learning. It publishes various sources of academic research, for example, books, journal articles, reports, universities and professional societies. It indexes scholarly articles from across the web bringing them all into one convenient place with related works, additional citations and author information.
For academic sites, publishers and researchers, Google Scholar is key to traffic performance. This platform requires traditional SEO optimisation balanced with Google Scholar specific optimisations.
Current visibility on Google Scholar
Unlike with standard SEO, there aren’t any magical tools out there for Google Scholar with ranking/indexation data.
The “site:” operator can provide a ballpark figure for indexation. It is important to note that using this method is not 100% accurate but if you want to compare your relative visibility to competitors, it can provide some insight.
For example, below we have two academic sites in Google Scholar. Using the “site:” operative, we can see oup.com has approximately 1,770,00 results…