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How To Get Your Site Into Google News Editors’ Picks

Google News Editor's Pick

Editors’ Picks is a section on Google News that displays stories selected by the editors of the displayed publications as some of their best content.

Editors’ Picks used to just appear on the GN home page, but recently topic-specific Editors’ Picks began appearing on different sections of Google News, such as tech and business.

Approximately 10 publications are shown in the Editors’ Picks section at a time. For the most part, Google’s algo selects which publications are included in Editors’ Picks when the page loads. Individual uses can also affect which publications are included (or not) using the Google News personalization settings.

Approved Google News sources (see: 8 Tips For Getting Approved As A Google News Source) can apply to be approved to appear in the Editors’ Picks section.

The application process is pretty straight forward – but there are certain technical details that have to be in place before you apply.

Google provides all the details here – and you will want to look through those guidelines carefully to get everything in the right order before you apply.

In short, the way you go about it is to set up on RSS feed that includes only your best news content. It needs to be updated with new articles regularly (at least one new link every 48 hours, they recommend 1 or 2 a day), and it needs to include a logo they can use in the Editors’ Picks section (image size is important here, but sure to read Google’s guidelines).

If you are running a WordPress site, unfortunately there isn’t an Editors’ Picks Plugin to make an Editors’ Picks RSS feed at this time. (update – now there’s at least one).

However, it’s not difficult to hack something together that you can use for a WordPress Editors’ Picks RSS feed.

There are several ways to do this – here’s the simplest (though perhaps not the most elegant) solution I’ve found. It still requires some basic knowledge of how your WordPress site works, how to edit a php file, and where your functions.php file is.

You’ll need to select a new ‘tag’ to use to identify your Editors’ Picks selection. As an example, we’ll just use “editors-pick” (no apostrophe here, to keep the RSS url simple). Each time you have an article that you want to designate an as an Editors’ Pick, you will add “editors-pick” as one of your tags.

After doing that, you should be able to go to http://www.yoursite.com/tag/editors-pick/feed and see an RSS feed that includes any posts you have tagged “editors-pick”.

Ah, but it doesn’t have that required logo in it. So now you go to your functions.php file, back it up before making changes just in case, then add this code to the bottom before that ?>

// add logo for GN Editors’ Picks to RSS feeds
add_action(‘rss_head’,’rss_add_logo’);
add_action(‘rss2_head’,’rss_add_logo’);
function rss_add_logo() {

$img_url=””; //place the url of your GN Editors’ Picks logo between the quote marks

ECHO “<image>
<url>”.$img_url.”</url>
</image>”;
}

Be sure to put the url that leads to your logo image (that complies with  Google’s guidelines) between the quote marks on the $img_url= line.

Now when you look at your RSS feed you should see a section that includes the image url (you may need to clear your cache if you don’t see any difference).

The code above will add the image url to – all – your post RSS feeds. There are ways not to do that, but we are trying to keep it as simple as possible here and it won’t hurt anything to have your logo in all your feeds in most cases.

Now, head back over to the Google’s guidelines for requesting approval for your site to be in Google News’ Editors’ Picks. On that page, you will find a link to request approval for your site to be included.

Good luck 🙂

Credit goes to Amir for coming up with the idea of using WordPress tags to keep this simple!

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