These pages provide some tips and guidance from publishers, journals, authors and others around key activities which can help to improve the visibility and therefore the citedness of your research. These include:
Selecting the most appropriate journal, which will reach the broadest and most appropriate audience for your research is essential to ensuring the maximum potential for citation of your published research.
Academics will have differing views as to how to best select the most appropriate journal, but here we have collected some suggestions of things to consider.
Are any journal level metrics considered important in your field of study? Does your department indicate any expectations as to particular "high impact" or "high prestige" journals? Is publication in any particular journal considered important for your career progression?
There are several ranking systems for journals, including:
If someone tells you a particular journal is the "best" journal to publish in, it may also be worth asking why they consider it the "best" journal and to consider if that aligns with your own priorities.
Is the journal discoverable via search engines such as Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic (i.e. is the whole journal open to be indexed by these services, or can you only find some articles if they are also available from author's profile pages and open access repositories.
Look at the published works you have cited; if you have cited a number of articles in a small number of journal titles, then it is likely you are aiming to reach a similar audience. Perhaps one of these journals may be the best journal to publish in to reach the most appropriate audience, who are most likely to read, apply and cite your research?
It may make little sense, for example, to publish in a "high impact" journal, when a journal better suited to your specific topic of research may better reach the desired audience. A "high impact" journal usually refers to a journal with a high "average number of citations per article" metric - but many of these see a highly skewed level of citation, with some articles in high impact journals receiving a very small number of citations, or none at all.
The title and abstract you select for your article can have two immediate affects on the discoverability of your research, and thus the potential for your work to be found, read and cited.
Text-mining and data-mining: Increasingly in many disciplines, the text- and data-mining of large amounts of published content are increasingly used as primary means of discovery and synthesis of research literature. Ensuring the structure of titles and abstracts are also optimised for automated discovery and interpretation are therefore also key considerations.
Publisher's often offer guidance on structure, length and format of titles. Some simple key tips to consider might include:-
An abstract should therefore aim to be a fully self-contained description of the publication in itself, to entice the reader to read further, but not to require them to do so to understand anything contained within the abstract. It should:
You should also remember that, unless the article is open access, the abstract and title may be only parts of the article a potential reader can read, and make any assessment as to whether accessing the full text is worth the extra effort (tracking down an original author) or financial cost (paying to view or download the full text).
See some of the studies and guidance below for further information around abstract length and keyword frequency:
Make sure that you, and your university and department, receive appropriate credit and attribution for your publications. It is not uncommon for publications to be incorrectly attributed to the wrong author or institution based on incorrect or ambiguous author information included in the original article.
Ensuring your university affiliation is included on your papers is particularly important for ensuring your research output is correctly identified and included in citation metric components used in University Rankings such as the QS World Rankings.
Author Identifiers can uniquely identify you and link your research activity to you, increasing the visibility of your research (and potential to attract citations) in addition to other benefits (such as reducing data entry by providing options for seemless data transfer between systems).
The guide below offers a quick overview and comparison of the four most widely used author IDs, whilst the following videos on the page show to create or maintain your ORCID, Google Scholar, Publons or Scopus Author ID.
ORCID can help ensure all of your research output is correctly linked to you, and easily identifiable and discoverable by publisher, funder and organisational systems. It allows many services (such as Scopus) to allow someone who finds one of your publications to quickly find all of your other outputs. Registering for an ORCID only takes 5 minutes. See our ORCID FAQs for further information.
Scopus is a bibliographic and citation database, indexing over 19,000 journals, conference proceedings, monographs and book chapters. If you have published an article in any of the titles it indexes, you will likely have a Scopus Author Profile; it is well worth being aware of how to claim and correct these automatically generated profiles, which can support readers who find one of your articles in identifying, accessing and reading your other research output.
Publons previously allowed authors to showcase their peer review and editorial contributions, but since being purchased by Clarivate Analytics and integrated with ResearcherID and Web of Science, it now also allows authors to link their publication activity as well. It works similarly to Scopus Author Profiles.
Google Scholar is the go-to search engine for many academics and students. Having a Profile on Google Scholar not only increases the visibility of your research output (by altering your name in the author credits into a hyperlink to your profile and other publications) but also allows you to track citations to your work identified in Google Scholar.
Open access can increase the accessibility, discoverability, and visibility of a research output. It enables researchers to more easily share their work and promote it effectively via online media (as anyone with an internet connection is able to link through to the full text, and won't face a paywall barrier if they don't have subscription access).
Open access publishing can result in increased accessibility because:
Whether publishing your research open access provides a citation advantage is something that is up for debate, however – with some strong opinions on either side of the argument.
Ensuring your output is free from subscription or paywall barriers to access can make it easier to access once someone has discovered it. Use of Social Media, alongside more traditional scholarly networks (conferences, sharing your e-prints with colleagues), can help increase the visibility of your recent articles, link them into current online narratives and conversations, and directly target likely readers and users of the research.
See our "Social Media Guidance for Researchers" Guide. This covers: