How to track and improve the reception and success of your Open Access paper.

Your paper......

has just been published as an Open Access publication, i.e., it may be distributed widely and without restriction. You may (and should), for example, make it available on your home page, deposit it in repositories of your choice and send it to relevant colleagues in your community. This should considerably boost the number of citations of your paper.

Do you know how often (and by whom) your paper has been cited already? Does your institution request information about the impact of the journal you published in?
There are ways and means to find the number of citations of your paper and the impact of the journal.
We will explain below, where to find this information online1,2,3.

1 Thomson Reuters Web of ScienceTM (WOS, ISI Web of KnowledgeSM)

At WOS, you may search for your papers and those of any other author and create citation reports for them showing the development of citations to it since the year of publication. Your Hirsch factor (h index) is indicated as well. You may download the results as spreadsheets (XLSX). WOS also provides links to the publications citing your papers. You will need credentials to access WOS. These may either be available from your institution; alternatively you may have to order them from Thomson Reuters.

1.1 Thomson Reuters Journal Citation Reports

Journal Citation Reports® (JCR) are part of the Web of Knowledge (see above). They are accessed via the above link to WOS. JCR allow analysing the impact of scholarly journals. For instance, 2-year impact factors for MetZet are available there back to 1999, 5-year impact factors back to 2007.

1.2 Thomson Reuters ResearcherID

Please, go to Upon registration you will be assigned a unique identifier which enables you to manage a list of your own publications and to view the number of citations of your papers and simple citation metrics including the Hirsch factor (computed from the data stored in WOS). You may also make your publication lists (or parts of it) freely available to other researchers. Managing your publication lists is easy if you have access to the Web of Science (see above), but is also possible without this access. This is a free offer.


At ORCID you will be assigned a unique identifier (different from your ResearcherID) which enables you to manage a list of your publication. Orcid does not provide citation data. The lists of your publications (or parts of it) are freely accessible to other researchers and provide an additional way to make your papers known to the world. This is a free offer.

3 Scopus (Elsevier BV)

Scopus allows searching your papers (and those of any other author) in order to create citation reports and citation metrics - including the Hirsch factor - for them. You may download the results as a spreadsheet. Scopus furthermore provides links to the publications which reference your papers. You will need login credentials to access scopus. These may be available from your institution; alternatively you will have to order them from Elsevier BV. Scopus is a paid service.

3.1 Scopus Preview (Elsevier BV)

At Scopus Preview you may search for your name or those of other authors. You may view the number of citations to your papers and some simple citation metrics including the Hirsch factor. You may not manage your publication list yourself (but you may request to merge your lists in case Scopus has generated more than one list of your papers). Scopus Preview is a free offer and provides a limited part of the information available in Scopus (see above). You must log in to Scopus in order to follow links printed in grey colour.

3.2 SCImago Journal and Country Ranking (SCImago Lab)

SCImageo Journal and Country Ranking offers journal and country rankings back to 1999. The journal rankings are partly comparable to Thomson Reuters JCR (see above) but offer some additional information. This is a free offer, based on data in Scopus (see above).

3.3 CWTS Journal Indicators (Leiden University)

CWTS Journal Indicators provides journal rankings comparable to those of Thomson Reuters JCR (see above) back to 1999. The information listed here is different from JCR but similar to a subset of the information available at SCImago (see above). CWTS Journal Indicators is a free offer based on data in Scopus (see above).

4 Google Scholar

Google Scholar allows searching for your papers and papers of other authors. It displays the number of citations to a paper and provides information (including links) on the papers citing it. Google Scholar defines a citation much broader than the ISI Web of Knowledge and Scopus by considering references in books and web pages. This leads to higher citation rates.
If you register for a Google account and log in while you are searching you may click to “My citations” in the top line of the screen. This displays a list of your papers and the Google citation count (see above) and some simple citation metrics including the Hirsch factor. This is a free offer.

4.1 Publish or Perish (Tarma Software Research Limited)

Publish or Perish (PoP, is free desktop software which may be downloaded and installed on your computer. The software analyses the citation data available from Google Scholar and produces citation lists and statistics including the Hirsch factor.
PoP provides several types of searches for author names or journals and produces clickable lists. You may store the results as spreadsheets to your own computer. Google Scholar without logging in does not offer any statistics. With logging in to Google, you only get simple statistics for your own publications.


The success of your publication today very much depends not only on the journal you publish in, but also on what and how much you do to make your paper known to other scientists. Thanks to the Open Access, availability is no longer an issue today. The selected services listed in this document may help you in tracking the citation (hence success) of your papers.

Services 1, 1.2, 3, 3.1, 4, and 4.1 listed above are suitable for obtaining the citation statistics of single papers. Services 1.1, 3.2, and 3.3 are suitable for checking the impact of scientific journals. Services 1.2, 2, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 4, and 4.1 are free; services 1, 1.1, and 3 require credentials.

Are you satisfied with your citation statistics? If not, enhance the visibility and distribution of your paper. For instance, you may use the services given under points 1.2 and 2 above. The publisher makes sure that relevant information (=metadata) of your new paper is transferred as fast as possible to the services listed under points 1, 3 and 4 (and others too).

The simplest way of citing your paper is by its DOI which is indicated on the front page of your MetZet paper. Try entering the URL (for example: of the DOI resolver, followed by the DOI of your paper in the address line of your browser. It immediately forwards you to the paper carrying this DOI. If it is an Open Access paper everybody will have full access to your paper via this URL. The publisher makes sure that the resource location information behind a DOI is always up-to-date. There is no easier way to pass an Open Access paper to a colleague.

If you encounter any problems in locating or citing your MetZet paper with one of the above mentioned services, please report to

1 Some of the product names mentioned in this document are registered trade marks, even if they are not marked appropriately. The use of these names may be restricted.

2 The publisher of MetZet is not linked to any of the web offers listed below and does not recommend the use of a specific product. We take no liability for the use of the products listed below. We are not responsible for the contents offered by the web pages listed below.

3 All internet addresses listed in this document have been accessed on September 1, 2015.