Google and The Scotsman

Google’s UK news page seems to have a love affair with The Scotsman’s website. It’s only one newspaper out of many, but at the moment the UK News page has more headline links to it than to Reuters and the BBC put together. And it’s normally this way. Anybody have any idea why?

The Scotsman is the only broadsheet in Scotland registered by ABC (Audit Bureau of Circulations) as a national paper. The obviously influences Google’s ranking of its importance.

Unfortunately, it’s wrong. The Scotsman is not the top selling broadsheet in Scotland. It’s not even close. There are three broadsheets in Scotland that sell more than The Scotsman, but because they are not registered with the ABC as nationals they are regarded as ‘regional’. Generally the difference is not evident from the content of the papers, but The Scotsman still gets this disproportional regard because of it.

However, despite making loses and losing readership, The Scotsman is currently spending gobloads of money (it’s owned by the Barclay Brothers, who seem to have a bottomless pit of cash) on its web portal, so it means plenty of activity on the web site, which no doubt also influences Google.

Thanks - I guess the ABC registration would explain it.

Certainly the design of websites, or more specifically their simplicity seems to help, with Guardian articles in particular getting a fair bit of prominence.