Would you like to have your face, your name and your Google+ account show when people find your content in Google’s search results? Just like my details show up in the image above? This is the post for you. It is actually a 5 minute job so keep reading.
You can now claim your content and make it more personal by showing the name and face behind your content in Google’s search results. Google has introduced the display of author information in search results to highlight the content creators and help users discover great content. They call it Google Authorship. Social media and the blogosphere are centered around people. It is no longer enough to just blog under a nickname or be totally anonymous. Building your personal brand is crucial and Google authorship helps you do just that.
UPDATE: On June 26th 2014 Google announced that author profile photo and circle count will no longer be shown in search results. Only the author name with the link to the Google+ page will remain.
What’s Google Authorship good for?
“What’s Authorship good for?” you may be asking. These are the benefits for bloggers and other content creators that are part of the Google Authorship markup and have the rich snippets display in Google’s results for their content:
- It brands you better.
- It will help your content stand out and make it more prominent.
- It distinguishes your content from your competitor’s content in the search results.
- It gives more exposure to your Google+ profile. Hopefully more people will circle you thanks to this.
- It will give you the social proof by showing how many people circle you in Google+.
- Your content will be more credible and more trustworthy
- Your content will get more clicks from search results compared to anonymous authors.
Adding your site to Google Authorship
There is a process you need to go through to get your blog added to the authorship program:
- Create your own Google+ profile. Make sure to fill in your profile details and include a nice profile image.
- Connect your content by verifying it to your Google+ profile. Edit your “Contributor To” section on your Google+ and add a public link back to your site.
- Link to your Google+ profile by using the rel=author tag from your blog - the link should point to your Google+ profile URL like this: https://plus.google.com/+username?rel=author . You can add this link in the footer of your site for example like I do or in the author box, in the sidebar where you share your other social profile links or in the author byline.
- An easier way is to activate a plugin like WordPress SEO and include a link to your Google+ in your “Users” – “Your Profile” in your WordPress admin.
- Include your Google+ rel=author tag on other content you post around the web including guest posts and other syndicated content.
- To check if it was setup properly, use this rich snippets testing tool. Insert any of your post URL’s and you should see a message in green: “Authorship is working for this webpage”.
More visibility, more clicks
When everything has been sorted and you have been added, your content will rank with your profile picture, your name and link to your Google+ (plus the number of people that circle you there) as the byline of your search listings. You will be more visible in search results, start building a more credible name and you will be getting more clicks than a blogger who is not in Google Authorship.