Improving Institutional Repository Search Engine Visibility in Google and Google Scholar

Constellation D: Monday, October 31, 2:00 – 3:00PM

At the DLF Forum in 2010 we gave a general presentation about search engine optimization for digital repositories. In that presentation we revealed some new and surprising information about Google Scholar harvesting requirements, and how they affect institutional repositories’ visibility in the GS index. We learned, for instance, that the Webmaster Inclusion Guidelines for Google Scholar cautions us to “use Dublin Core only as a last resort” for metadata tags. One reason for instruction this is that Dublin Core cannot represent publication citation information very well. We have also learned that getting indexed in Google Scholar results in higher ranking for that same item in Google’s main index. Working with OCLC, we have continued to research SEO practices for Google Scholar as well as for the main Google index, and that research has resulted in a book contract with Neal-Schumann. We also gave a similar presentation at CNI last spring:,60502. In this year’s research update we offer a solid set of practices that can be applied broadly to institutional repositories to improve the percentage of items that are indexed by Google Scholar.

Session Resources

Session Leaders

Kenning Arlitsch is Associate Dean for IT Services at the J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah. He recently completed a 12-month sabbatical, during which he conducted research with OCLC on search engine optimization and network level library technologies. Kenning began building the Marriott’s digital library program in 1999, and founded the multi-state Mountain West Digital Library, the Utah Digital Newspapers program, and co-founded the Western Soundscape Archive. His department is responsible for digitization, interface design and development, repository management, and server infrastructure for the library and its extended digital programs. He holds a BA in English from Alfred University in New York, and a Masters degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Kenning is also a graduate of the Frye Leadership Institute (2005) and of the Research Libraries Leadership Fellows program (2009), sponsored by the Association of Research Libraries.

Patrick S. Obrien is an expert in customer focused, data driven sales and marketing operations. He specializes in the use of new media channels and Internet marketing to increase product visibility, acquire new customers, and improve customer satisfaction. He first began incorporating Search Engine Optimization (SEO) into demand generation marketing programs in 1997. He is a former Accenture Strategy Consultant with over 15 years experience working with business executives on converting marketing strategy into actionable results within the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Healthcare, Financial Services and Telecommunications industries. Mr. O’Brien holds a B.A. in Economics from UCLA and a MBA in Marketing and Finance from The University of Chicago, Booth School of Business.

Skip to content