Google’s Authorship in 3 easy steps

Having a strong web presence takes a little work but once complete, the results will speak for themselves.  One of the tools you can utilize is Google’s Authorship Program.  In the screen shot below the first thing you notice is the image of Nancy’s profile pic.  By placing a face to your web presence you automatically become recognizable to your audience.

Google launched its authorship program last year, which allows authors to get more enhanced listings in the search results by using the rel=author markup.  To have your authorship information ie: “author snippets”  appear in search results for the content you create, you will need a Google+ Profile with a good, recognizable headshot as your profile photo. ( Google specify’s a good profile headshot because images such as logo’s may not show up.)  Then, verify authorship of your content by associating it with your profile. 

Note:  Google doesn’t guarantee to show author information in Google Web Search or Google News results.  [source: Google Webmaster Tools]

Why bother?  You may ask:

  • Your results will stand out!  Something we love to do, just like the purple cow.
  • It’s easy to do by following the steps above and helps build a stronger online presence and helps establish a personal brand.
  • It will increase the credibility of your blog and website, by displaying your profile image and  linking to your G+ profile page, your audience will know that Google has verified the site and author, and thereby lends credibility to the search result.

Thus,  increasing the all-important  CTR of your site.   Clickthrough rate (CTR) is a way of measuring the success of an online advertising campaign for a particular website.

Ok now let’s take a quick look at how to do it. 

First Step:  On your site goto your about me page, and add a link to your Google+ account, that has the  rel=”me” attribute on it.

our code looked like this:  [<a href=”” rel=”me”>Google+</a>]

Second Step:  We will assume that you have a Google + profile.  In your Google profile you will need to add a link in the “Contributor to” section that points to your Author page where we had placed the Google link with the rel=”me” attribute.  Here’s a screen shot of the editing screen in Google under your profile.

Third Step:  The page where we placed the  rel=”me” attribute on needs to have a rel=”author” attribute added to it.   Don’t panic, we are almost done. We need to do this to prove authority of the content on the site.   From your WordPress Dashboard goto Menus, then select the about me page ( in our case the page was call Our Story),  and add the author to the Link Relationship field as shown below, and save your changes. 

HINT:  If you do not see these options, go to the  upper right corner, select screen options, and make sure to have the Link Relationship checked to show under “Show advanced menu properties”.

It will take time to see the results show up in searches, as Google re-indexes the pages.  If you are like me and cannot wait, you can use the Rich Snippets Testing Tool from Google to see if things are working properly.

I give most of the credit for this blog to Brian Gardner.  I followed his instructions and was pleased that I was able to get things to “work”.  And; of course, I had to write a blog explaining the steps.  Basically, if I can do it you can too! 

If you really want to dive into this subject, here’s an interview with Google’s Sagar Kamdar.


[Blog by Chrissie ]

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About Nancy Bain

Our services include building optimized, functional and self managed WordPress websites, Nova Scotia social media training and consulting, interactive full screen high definition virtual tours with lead capture and print advertising. For most of our clients, we are their one stop solution for all things marketing, branding and small business development related.