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Market or perish - Academic SEO

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From my Mendeley Open Office Talk on November 26, 2010. Speech bubbles have been added for better context. See the blog at http://mendeley.com/

From my Mendeley Open Office Talk on November 26, 2010. Speech bubbles have been added for better context. See the blog at http://mendeley.com/

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  • Going to show you a photo in next slide. Want you to shout out the first things that come to mind.
  • Going to show you a photo in next slide. Want you to shout out the first things that come to mind.
  • We support academics, students and other professionals (or researchers) in their work with scientific literature.We provide scientific knowledge.We organize scientific knowledge.We help to explore and share scientific knowledge.


  • 1. Publish or Perish
    Jason Hoyt, Ph.D.
    Chief Scientist + VP of R&D
    Mendeley Open Office Talks
    26 Nov 2010
    twitter: @jasonHoyt
  • 2. Academics should learn how to market themselves; Lady Gaga style.
    Creative Commons licensed
  • 3. Market yourself
    Or get of academia now. Visibility = Citations = Tenure
    We have grant writing courses to help our careers, but nothing about marketing our research.
    Marketing in this case isn’t a dirty word. It’s simply making our research visible.
  • 4. Self-archiving
    #1 Marketing Tool. Publishing is no longer enough.
    Self-archiving should occur before (pre-prints), during, and after (post-print) we publish
  • 5. Self-archiving
    The juicy secrets.
    58% of publishers allow it
    That 58% covers 83% of all journals
    41% of publishers allow pre-prints
  • 6. ASBMB
    BioMed Central
    Blackwell Publishing
    BMJ Publishing Group
    Cambridge University Press
    Elsevier (except journals of Cell Press)
    Humana Press
    Nature Publishing Group
    Oxford Journals
    Public Library of Science (PLoS)
    Taylor & Francis
    Many more…
    Visit Sherpa Romeo for publisher/journal specifics
    A small sample.
    Who allows pre-prints?
  • 7. Why do publishers allow pre-prints?
    Impact Factor Cherry Picking
    Pre-prints help publishers gauge what they should publish
    A popular pre-print can jump the line in a giant 12-18 month backlog
  • 8. Search engines are key to marketing our research.
    Search Engines
    This is known as Academic SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  • 9. What’s the coverage?
    People search aggregators that have the coverage. Focus on the aggregators.
  • 10. Ranking algorithms
    Understand the basics of how search engines rank literature.
    We’ll look at the biggest Search Engines. Mendeley, Google Scholar, & PubMed
  • 11. Pubmed
    Content Relevance
    MeSH terms
    ‘Freshness’ How recent is the publication?
  • 12. Google Scholar
    Content Relevance
    Citation count
    Impact factor of journal
    Freshness of cited by
    Who authored the paper
    Quality of metadata
  • 13. Mendeley
    Content Relevance
    Quality of metadata
    Citations (future)
    Quality of metadata means how complete is it? Abstract, full-text to be found?
  • 14. Google Scholar
    GS favors citation count too strongly. Expected result is 5th on GS.
  • 15. Improving your visibility
    So we’ve seen how Mendeley, PubMed, & GS rank.
    What can we do to make sure our research is properly included & ranked?
  • 16. After you Publish
    For Mendeley users
    Make sure we have complete metadata & abstract at least
    Use Tags – Google will also index these on Mendeley article pages. Remember synonyms.
    Author keywords – Make sure they are extracted or copy them in. Google also indexes these
    External links. Do you have the URL to your self-archive? Google will find these as well as people searching on Mendeley. Use the URL field! And use the DOI link.
    Create a public group for your paper and similar ones. Google indexes these as well.
    When self-archiving, make sure your Web page (or University’s) uses CoiNS and meta tags (e.g. Eprints, Highwire). Google and Mendeley both index these.
    Before & when you publish
    Use synonyms in title/abstract
    Use vector graphics for figures/tables text (SVG is XML and can be indexed)
    Mendeley & GS will rank papers with abstracts and a pre-print or full-text available slightly higher than those without.
    If you forgot synonyms when you published, it isn’t too late. Put them in the tags field on Mendeley. People often search for synonyms.
  • 17. This is from the ‘My Publications’ folder in Mendeley. It’s for papers I authored.
    It’s a paper that I co-authored back in the day. I could add more tags with synonyms. This might improve its visibility years after being published. I should also create a public group for it.
  • 18. This is Chris Wiggins’ faculty page at Columbia.
  • 19. His ‘papers’ link on the left displays his Mendeley profile. He doesn’t need to rely on the school IT to update his CV.
    All of his papers are updated in real-time from his ‘My Publications’ folder in Mendeley
  • 20. Ethical boundaries
    black hat vs. white hat SEO for academia
    There is a line to ‘marketing’ or Academic SEO that shouldn’t be crossed.
  • 21. Aalst, J. van (2010). Using Google Scholar to Estimate the Impact of Journal Articles in Education. Educational Researcher 39, 387-400. Available at: http://edr.sagepub.com/cgi/doi/10.3102/0013189X10371120
    Bakkalbasi, N., Bauer, K., Glover, J., and Wang, L. (2006). Three options for citation tracking: Google Scholar, Scopus and Web of Science. Biomedical digital libraries 3, 7. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16805916
    Beel, J., Vlba-lab, F. I. N. I. T. I., and Wilde, E. (2010). Academic Search Engine Optimization ( ASEO ): Optimizing Scholarly Literature for Google Scholar & Co . Journal of Scholarly Publishing 41. Available at:
    Mikki, S. (2009). Comparing Google Scholar and ISI Web of Science for Earth Sciences. Scientometrics 82, 321-331. Available at: http://www.springerlink.com/index/10.1007/s11192-009-0038-6
    Further reading
  • 22. Publish or Perish
    Market &