It has been confirmed by Google that changes will be made to Google News in order to help publishers find their sites and articles in Google News.
Lisa Wang confirmed this information in the help forums after months of complaints from news publishers that their content not being displayed in Google News for relevant queries.
“We are working on an update which should help resolve some of the issues that publishers have raised around finding their sites or particular articles in Google News,” Wang wrote. “We estimate this will be ready in the next few weeks and will provide another update at that time.”
When asked, Google wouldn’t clarify what this update is fixing. We don’t know if it was an indexing bug with a specific format of news publishers that hurt their chances of ranking or a ranking bug with a niche of websites in Google News? Could it have been a bug with Google News that prevented some publishers from now displaying in Google News?
No other information was given by Google on what was changing.
There seems to be no patterns among the affected sites complaining about Google News visibility in the help thread. A multitude of content management systems (CMS) are being used by the publishers to publish a variety of different topics and content, so it doesn’t seem to impact a specific category of news. There doesn’t seem to be an specific characteristics between the publishers that once could guess would be an issue among them all.
There’s a good chance that Google will provide an update when the update rolls out, but probably won’t contain specifics.