When publishers are reviewing your article to decide if they want to publish it, they will look at the author bio area as well as the article. Publishers will have editorial guidelines for this portion of your article, and if yours does not abide by those guidelines, the article will be declined.
Not sure what to aim for when creating the author bio for your article? Here are seven common things that publishers look for in a resource box when evaluating your article submission.
1. It needs to contain more than just a website address
It may be tempting to regard your author bio as just a place to put the link to your website, but it’s so much more than that. This is the one spot in your article submission where you can tell a little about yourself, your business, and your products. You can (and should) give the reader a reason to visit your website.
If you just put a link there and leave it at that, you’re missing out on the opportunity to connect with your reader and lure him or her back to your site. You’ll have a much better chance of getting traffic from your articles if you invest some time and effort into formulating your resource box, rather than just putting a link there.
2. It needs at least one link
While it’s not all right to just have a link in your author bio without any other information, you do want to be sure to include a link to your site somewhere. Some people get so focused on the biography aspect, they forget the only way the article will drive traffic to their website is via that precious link – don’t forget to include one.
3. Be sure the link works
This is a very common mistake that can easily be avoided. After you enter your article into the submission form, preview it and be sure to test out the links in the resource box. Click on them – do they go where you want them to?
4. Anchor text is too long
“Anchor text” refers to the words that are used to form the link leading to your website. The anchor text that you use in your resource box should be a keyword phrase you’ve researched, ideally two to three words long. Some publishers limit the length of the anchor text to three words maximum, so keep that in mind.
5. Too many links
Many publishers will allow a maximum of two links per author bio. Keep in mind that your goal is not just to generate backlinks, but to craft your resource box in such a way that the reader will want to click the link(s).
Because most publishers have length limits on author bios, if you put more than one or two links, you won’t have enough room to try to convince the reader to click them.
If you put too many links in there and don’t give the reader a reason to click them, odds are the reader won’t click any of them.
6. It has too many characters
A common length limit for author bios is 400 to 450 characters. That’s not a lot of text – you really have to choose your words and the information you decide to include strategically.
7. It doesn’t have any biographical information
Some people will just put information about their business or products and a link to their website, without mentioning anything about the actual author of the article. While you don’t have to mention anything really personal, it’s a nice touch to start by mentioning the author name (you’ll be writing in the third person), why you should be regarded as an authority on your topic, and what your business is.
Each individual publisher decides what editorial requirements he or she has for article submissions, but there are some common ones that many high-quality publishers have. Whether a publisher requires all of these or not, your resource box will only be made better by abiding by these seven guidelines. The better your resource box, the better chance that publishers will accept your article and that readers will click the link leading to your website.
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