How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step)

Having a Wikipedia page about you or your business is an important step that improves your brand equity. And you don't even have to visit Wikipedia to see that.

Google any well-known brand and you will most likely see something like this:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Most of the information displayed comes from Wikipedia and Wikidata.

However, getting a Wikipedia page is tricky. And that's an understatement.

I spent hours researching the official guidelines, tried to reverse the process from the reviewers' perspective, and managed to get our brand page approved without doing anything shady:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

And despite my efforts to gradually improve the page, it was reported and deleted two weeks later.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The problem? Allegedly bad sources and a bias against the referencing.

While I didn't make the page stick and withstand the editing processes, I learned a lot about Wikipedia and creating a branded page.

In this guide, you'll learn how to create a Wikipedia page from start to finish, and how to make sure it's approved in the long run:

  1. Check your notability
  2. Finding sources to establish notability
  3. Create a user page
  4. Build your reputation
  5. Create a plan
  6. Write your page
  7. Format, cite and categorize
  8. Prepare submission for review
  9. Adjust and cooperate
  10. Control your inputs

Let's start with the most serious problem.

The most common reason Wikipedia pages fail the review process is lack of notability.

And here's the hard truth: Your brand is less notable than you think.

I had no doubt that Ahrefs was well known. We probably have the best tool set of referencing the most popular and almost everyone in the industry has mentioned us at one time or another:

On top of that, our two biggest "competitors" already have Wikipedia pages. So it should be pretty easy to get it for us too, right?

Well, here is the result of my first article submission:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

So even for us, it took a lot of effort to gather enough good sources to have a chance of standing up to the notability criteria.

And you already know our results. Some editors felt that was enough and others dismissed most of the sources as unreliable due to their affiliation with the marketing industry and the referencing.

So how do you know what to use as sources?

What notability means to Wikipedia

The notability criteria that apply to companies are the following:

An organization is generally considered notable if it has received significant coverage in reliable and independent secondary sources. Trivial or incidental coverage of a topic by secondary sources is not sufficient to establish notability. All content must be verifiable. If no independent, third-party, reliable sources can be found on a topic, then Wikipedia should not have an article on that topic.

There are a number of terms that need to be explained in more detail. Indeed, even some well-established sources do not always meet the criteria.

For example, I'm sure you've seen many brands with sections like this one on their homepage, displaying the logos of well-known websites like Forbes and Entrepreneur :

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Sorry to disappoint you, but these sites do not automatically establish a reputation on Wikipedia. Many pages on sites like these are user-generated and sponsored. This disqualifies them as legitimate Wikipedia sources.

Let me expand on the source criteria so that it is clear why:

- It must be written by a source with established credibility. This includes most journalistic and academic sources, books from reputable publishing houses, and most industry-leading blogs and platforms with appropriate editorial processes.

. As a result, many opinions and practical guides do not meet this independence criterion.

  • Secondary - the source must include the author's own reflection, evaluation, analysis, interpretation or synthesis. For example, original research and documents filed with of the SEC

are primary sources.

Since anyone can publish articles on Forbes or Entrepreneur, these sites often fail to meet the criteria of reliability and independence unless their editorial teams create the content.

Then there is the non-trivial mention criterion.

We have links from prestigious sources, but most of them are just passing mentions like this one:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The consensus from Wikipedia on a non-trivial mention seems to be at least two paragraphs dedicated to the topic of your page. The more the better, and a whole dedicated article is best. Here's an example in our case:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

How to quickly estimate notability

Make sure the first two items are true, and ideally all three:

  1. Your company is not "ordinary".
  2. You have extensive coverage in reliable and independent sources
  3. The entity has "red links" scattered throughout Wikipedia

1. Your company is not "ordinary".

This is the first and also the last condition of notability that has nothing to do with the sources. Something banal can be defined as not being distinguished from others. This essay on Wiki gives local companies as an example, but it seems possible to expand it considerably.

Just check out this comment on our delete page discussion:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

What to remember? Having the largest commercial crawler and develop a search engine is not enough to stand out for some publishers. I wouldn't expect this kind of bias in other industries, but make sure your company stands out in yours.

2. You have extensive coverage in reliable and independent sources

There is no way that you are not aware of mentions of your brand on the most important news sites such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Guardian or the Financial Times.

If there is at least one article on these sites that mentions your brand in detail, you can most likely rejoice. It probably won't be hard to find other legitimate sources to cite on your page.

Another indicator of the existence of a notable mark is its presence throughout Wikipedia. These mentions are often marked in red, meaning that there is not yet a page for that brand.

You can see a red Ahrefs link on a French page about backlinks:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

If you click on it, you will be taken to an article creation page. This is because Wikipedia encourages contributors to create pages on "red links Why? For Wikipedia to be the best encyclopedia possible, it needs information about things that are mentioned everywhere.

If you're wondering how to find these red links, look them up on Google. Just combine the search operator site:wikipedia.org with your brand name in quotation marks. Google will find all Wikipedia pages that contain your brand name.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Of course, it also picks up quotes from your articles, so you'll have to discard them. Unfortunately for us, it turned out that while we had a number of red links, none of them were on the English Wiki.

While the red link on the French article might have helped us establish notability on the French wiki, it has little or no effect on the main English wiki. This is because wikis in different languages are entities in their own right (more on this later).

Most of the time, you won't be lucky enough to have a top-notch source or red links to begin with.

If this is the case, as it was for us, follow these tips in order. This is the most effective method, and you can waste a lot of time looking for sources that may not even exist.

  1. Check the non-trivial coverage of your reference areas
  2. Dig into books and magazines
  3. Check brand statements for unrelated coverage

A. Check the non-trivial coverage of your referring domains

Examining your website's backlink profile is the most effective way to find appropriate sources
the most efficient way to find appropriate sources. To do this, paste your website into Ahrefs Site Explorer, then access the Referring Domains . This report shows all the sites that link to you, ranked by popularity.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Search the list for popular news sites, magazines and top industry sources. When you come across one, click on the asterisk in the "Links to Target" column to view the individual links, then check their context.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The above source looks promising as it provides information about our company. There is a good chance that it contains at least two paragraphs about our brand and products. We can confirm if this is the case by checking the page manually.

Additional remark.

If you are unsure about the relevance of a given source, try checking Wiki consensus on popular sources

With passing mentions and references, you can usually spot them right away.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

If you can't find at least one good source in your backlink profile, you're probably not meeting the notoriety guidelines and shouldn't proceed. Instead, read this section on what to do in this situation.

B. Searching through books and magazines

If your company is likely to have been referenced in books or magazines, these can also be notable sources.

As there are countless books on marketing and referencingAnd since our software is popular among industry professionals, this was the case for us. Unfortunately, since we don't own many of these books, we couldn't search for first-hand mentions. So we used Google Books.

If you are following us, just go to Google Books and search for your brand. You will get all the books mentioned and their context will be indicated in the extract.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

It's not much, but you can build your references and the text of the Wiki page around it.

Side note.

I knew of books that featured our brand but were not available in Google Books. If that's the case for you, get the book or try your luck with Amazon book samples.

For journals, I recommend using the most reliable and popular journal directories. I have used JSTOR during my college years, and it is also recommended by Wikipedia.

To be honest, I haven't found anything usable for Ahrefs on JSTOR. I had better luck with other journals, but after going through the contributions, I realized that they were not good sources of marketing and referencing. I studied marketing as part of my major, and it's a sad truth that many academic articles on marketing are far from reality. Consider this for your industry.

In addition, some sources are also magazines say predatory that do not meet the criteria of reliability and independence.

In my opinion, it is best to stick to JSTOR and not waste time looking elsewhere.

C. Check brand mentions for unbound coverage

I recommend that you only do this if you feel you are missing another important source, as it involves searching the web for unrelated brand mentions.

You can do this with Google search operators. Simply associate your brand name with various newspapers, magazines and industry blogs:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

However, this operation is quite tedious and time-consuming, so let's simplify this process with the help of Ahrefs' Content Explorer.

Content Explorer is a searchable database of over three billion pages, where you can use similar search operators to filter results.

In our case, I want to see all the mentions of "ahrefs", except for those on our website.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

This returns over 250,000 results:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Unfortunately, there is no way to filter out websites that are good sources for Wikipedia, but we can narrow things down with filters to get a smaller sample to work with.

First, let's select the live and English pages, as these are the only types of pages we can link to from Wikipedia.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Then, let's filter the websites that are "authoritative". To do this, we can use the Domain Rating (DR), which reflects the strength of a website's backlink profile. Wiki-friendly sources tend to have a fairly high DR, so I'll set this filter to DR 70+.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Finally, let's activate the "one page per domain" button and use the "highlight unrelated domains" function to highlight results that are not related to us.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Remember, we've already reviewed the referring domains, so we're only interested in the sites that aren't linked to us now. To export them, just press "Export" and check the "Only pages with highlighted domains" box to get the data:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

This is what it looks like in Google Sheets, sorted by DR:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

We have just filtered over 250,000 pages to only 174 domains. You can now easily browse the Content Title and URL looking for potentially relevant Wikipedia sources.

What if you don't meet Wikipedia's notability criteria in English?

First of all, there is a high probability that you do not meet the criteria. If you have tried your luck and your proposal has been rejected, don't push it unless you can improve the page and its sources. The number of rejected submissions is recorded, so you may regret it once you have undoubtedly become a notable entity.

I'm not here to tell you how to game the system. I spent a lot of time reading the wiki guidelines to make sure that everything I did was perfectly legal.

So don't give up on your brand awareness. Here are two ways to improve it:

1. Improve your public relations

Getting your name out there in major publications is one of the most difficult marketing tasks for businesses. Your options and opportunities depend heavily on your industry. It's usually a combination of the following:

  • An exceptional product
  • Disruption of the sector
  • Employer branding and activities of CSR
  • Content worth linking to
  • Well-known employees and brand ambassadors
  • Active follow-up and research of press opportunities

It should also be noted that not all media coverage is equal.

Let's say you've created a great infographic with data that journalists are interested in. You could pick up references from desirable sources, but this will most likely be useless for creating your Wiki page. This is because the article will focus on your content, not the company itself.

I recommend that you consult with public relations if you are serious about improving your game of public relations and you don't know where to start. It's a long-term game that is tied to strategy and brand management.

2. Try Wikipedia in other languages

Does your company have roots in a non-English speaking country? It will probably be covered more by the local media than by the international media.

The principles of notability remain the same throughout Wikipedia, but the criteria depend on location. If you're a startup based in the Bay Area, you'll have a lot more work to do to become notable than a startup in the Czech Republic, the country I'm from.

And it makes sense. The amount of reliable, independent sources is proportional to the number of speakers of that language. Solid coverage in two good sources would almost certainly be sufficient for a company based in the Czech Republic, while it probably would not be for a company based in the United States.

That sums up the most complicated part of creating your Wiki page. The rest will only get easier.

Wikipedia is an open collaborative project run by its community of contributors, editors and administrators. The only way to become a trusted member of the community is to have an account associated with valuable edits and contributions.

In short, it is necessary to register and create a Wiki user page to be taken seriously. It is also necessary to communicate with other members and disclose your conflicts of interest interest (COI).

You read that correctly. Creating or editing content for your own benefit is discouraged for obvious reasons. And while it's not against the law to submit a draft of your company's page, you should let editors know that you have a COI.

And one of the places you can do this is on your user page:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Use one of the models where you indicate the name of your employer.

Please consider making an effort to improve Wikipedia independently of your page. It's the right thing to do, and it will also increase the reputation of your account and your chances of having your changes approved .

As you can see on my user page above, I've listed the topics I want to edit. I want to encourage you to do the same and contribute a few items before submitting your page for review.

The more your contributions are unrelated to the edition of your COIthe better. It shows other members that you take Wikipedia seriously and that you are not a single purpose account.

Building your reputation in this way has another significant benefit. You will also learn to navigate in the CMS of Wikipedia, so that when your page is created, you will be ready.

Forget your usual outline creation process. You need to focus on the content of your Wikipedia page around your citation sources. This means not including anything that you can't cite later.

Remember that content based on three in-depth sources is generally better than content based on 20 mediocre sources. This ensures that the best sources are not buried and overlooked by editors.

I also recommend that you look at the structure of other companies in your industry that already have an established page.

Think of all the Wikipedia pages you've read so far. These are not typical articles or blog posts.

There are five concepts you should keep in mind when writing your page:

    1. Simplicity

- Use simple sentences and avoid unnecessary jargon.

    1. Neutral tone

- transmit information, not emotions.

    1. Objectivity

- don't be biased and forget your typical marketing words.

    1. Verification

- Support the information by citing your sources.

  1. Originality

- don't copy the text from your sources, interpret it.

Don't take this lightly. Publicity is probably the second most common reason for rejection after lack of awareness:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The best plan of attack is to send your sources to an unbiased friend, let them write it and publish it. If that's not possible, control your impulses and write the best page for the readers, not for your company.

I was well aware of this when I wrote the Ahrefs page, but some editors pointed out a few sections that were not neutral in their eyes.

Additional note.

You can write the ticket in the CMS from Wiki right away, no need to do it elsewhere. Just go to your sandbox

which you will use later to copy and paste the submission for review.

If you've done your homework and established your reputation, you should already be fairly familiar with how the CMS from Wikipedia. I will only highlight a few points here.

First of all, the infobox template that fits the business profiles:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

You will find it under Insert -> Template -> Company info box:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Then comes the citation, which is very easy. Wiki generates citations from a URL or theISBN of a book.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The system is not perfect, however. I have encountered some inaccuracies in the citation information. Be sure to double check what
Wiki generates and correct them if necessary.

Finally, it is a good idea to include categories to better connect your page with the rest of Wikipedia.

Although you can do this at the writing stage, links to categories should be disabled until the page is approved. It is easier to add categorization after that.

You must first activate the option in Preferences -> Gadgets -> Edit -> HotCat:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Then, simply use the categorization template at the end of your message by clicking here :

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Again, get inspired by looking at related business categories. This is what I chose:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The last thing I recommend you do before submitting the article for review is to browse the current discussions on items to be deleted (AfD).

Check out some of the proposed AfD pages, the arguments of the Wiki editors, and learn from them. Particularly useful are the discussions of specific sources and why they cannot be used to establish notability.

Once you have finished refining the article, you are ready to go through the article process to be created.

The ACS process tells you everything you need to know and do, including disclosure of your COI before starting. I chose the "I get paid to edit" option as an Ahrefs employee:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

It is also recommended to disclose it after finishing the page via the comments.

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

... and the discussion pages :

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

The box you see on the discussion page above could make the review process faster. It categorizes and highlights the project for the most appropriate editors.

You can consult the WikiProjects directory and add it to the end of the post on your talk page. In my case, it was {{WikiProject Marketing & Advertisement}}.

The review can take anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks. My first proposal was turned down in a day or two:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

So what went wrong?

I probably made the mistake of including too many sources where the Ahrefs mentions were rather insignificant. While it's still valid to use them as references, they don't count towards your notability.

As mentioned earlier, you should not expect reviewers to click on all of your references. I diluted the large sources with less significant ones.

I would still include some sources that would not be considered important. Their purpose is to support the information that makes the page flow and to highlight some interesting facts.

The second submission took much longer. I received an early notification from an editor with an additional question about the COI..

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

... but they did not continue the conversation.

A few weeks later, someone else made a comment about our sources and some parts that may not have been neutral. I thanked them, corrected the problems and the page was finally approved two months after the initial submission.

No matter how good your submission is, there is always room for improvement. Be prepared to engage with editors on the talk pages and in the comments. If the acceptance criteria for
are subjective to some extent, so don't try to argue.

Yes, some of your competitors may have approved wiki pages that are worse in every way, but that is not a valid argument to get your page approved.

Someone actually commented on our discussion on the delete page in our favor, and one of the arguments was about other referencing with approved Wiki pages:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

Well, it got out of hand. The discussion on our page triggered discussions about DFA for all software companies in referencing having a Wiki page. Some industries just have more difficulty on Wikipedia.

Your work is not finished even if your page is approved and remains in place. Some pages are more likely to be attacked and poorly edited than others. This is the price you pay for having open collaborative projects.

Be sure to keep an eye on your page to be notified if someone makes a change. Just check the box when you submit an article or post changes:

How to create a Wikipedia page (step by step), Maintenance Hosting Security and Wordpress development

That said, keep in mind that you should only go back or edit changes that are not verifiable. If someone adds something bad about your company that is backed up by valid sources, let them. This is what keeps the pages neutral and objective.

I hope you are good writers.

Last thoughts

I had three goals with this guide:

  • Help you understand if your brand is notable enough for a Wikipedia page.
  • Get you through the Wikipedia submission process as efficiently as possible.
  • Convince you to contribute regularly to Wikipedia.

Of course, the best case scenario would be to have a brand that is so popular and interesting that independent contributors would create the page for you. This will probably happen when you reach a certain level of fame.

You may also be wondering about the paid services that claim to provide you with your Wikipedia page. To me, the mere existence of these services seems questionable, so I haven't even looked into them. One person contacted me on social media, claiming to be an editor who would accept my proposal. I ignored him, and you should ignore him too.

As you already know, an approved submission can be easily deleted anyway and a questionable approval would only give reviewers more ammunition. Everything you need to know about evaluating your reputation can be found above.

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