The number of papers you publish is important to your career. “Publish early and often” is heard over and over again in research. However, the number of times your work is cited is important as well because it can indicate the impact that your research has on the field.
Increasing your citation count can also have a positive impact on your career because funding agencies often look at a combination of the number of papers and the number of citations when making grant decisions.
To boost your citation count to maximize impact, consider these 10 simple techniques:
1. Cite your past work when it is relevant to a new manuscript. However, do not reference every paper you have written just to increase your citation count.
2. Carefully choose your keywords. Choose keywords that researchers in your field will be searching for so that your paper will appear in a database search.
3. Use your keywords and phrases in your title and repeatedly in your abstract. Repeating keywords and phrases will increase the likelihood your paper will be at the top of a search engine list, making it more likely to be read.
4. Use a consistent form of your name on all of your papers. Using the same name on all of your papers will make it easier for others to find all of your published work. If your name is very common, consider getting a research identifier, such as an ORCID. You can provide your ORCID in your email signature and link that ID to your publication list so that anyone you email has access to your publications.
5. Make sure that your information is correct. Check that your name and affiliation are correct on the final proofs of your manuscript and check that the paper's information is accurate in database searches.
6. Make your manuscript easily accessible. If your paper is not published in an open-access journal, post your pre- or post-publication prints to a repository. Check SHERPA RoMEO to find your publisher's copyright and self-archiving policies regarding sharing your published manuscript.
7. Share your data. There is some evidence that sharing your data can increase your citations. Consider posting to data sharing websites, such as figshare or SlideShare, or contributing to Wikipedia and providing links to your published manuscripts.
8. Present your work at conferences. Although conference presentations are not cited by other others, this will make your research more visible to the academic and research communities. Check out these tips for making the most of your next research conference.
10. Actively promote your work. Talk to other researchers about your paper, even ones not in your field, and email copies of your paper to researchers who may be interested. Create a blog or a website dedicated to your research and share it.