The Google News team today published a list of tips on its official blog for making sure publishers’ content is optimized for inclusion in Google News. Here’s a quickfire version of their list:
-Keep the article body clean
Avoid strange tags, ads, sidebars, etc.
-Make sure article URLs are permanent and unique
Google News needs a fresh URL for each item and at least three digits that aren’t a year. Or, use News Sitemaps.
-Take advantage of stock tickers in Sitemaps
Use stock ticker symbols in content to get it tagged to the company.
-Check your encoding
Having a conflict with different encoding types can cause issues.
-Make your article publication dates explicit
Having no article date or an incorrect one can mess up your content’s placement in Google News..
-Keep original content separate from press releases
Don’t mix the two on news sections. If you do, make sure your site uses rel=”nofollow” for the links.
-Format your images properly
Use JPGs and make sure to place them near the headline for a chance at getting the thumbnail spot.