Google authorship is a great way to add a layer of personal branding to your posts and hopefully increase the click-through rate of those posts when they appear within Google’s SERPs. In this post I’m going to talk about the importance of Google authorship(verifying yourself as the official author of content with Google), and how to do it.
Importance of Google Authorship:
Say you do a Google search for “Search Engine Optimization Tips” and you see the following two results at the top of the page.
Which article are you more likely to click on?
I find myself clicking on the one with the authors photo nine times out of ten, even if it’s below the other. Now why? I can’t help but to see the article with the author photo as more trustworthy, a safe bet for a good read. Well, more often than not I find this instinct to prove helpful because these articles are from authors Google trusts to write good content. Google uses it’s social network Google+ to link authors and their articles. Google can then learn about the authors past success and use it to rank their future posts. Authors can now build credibility through their verified authorship connections with their Google+ profile. The results you see at the top of your pages are written by writers with authority that they’ve gained from past results. If you have a blog and have been able to build some authority with Google, you need to get verified as the author of that content. Not only will your picture come up along side your article in search results making it more attractive, but your future posts may receive better rankings because Google now knows they can trust you to write good content.
Instructions on Verifying Yourself:
On board? Alright great. I really hope you made it to this part and weren’t bored to death by my blabbering. This is the most important part of the post because now I’m going to show you how to get verified (This pertains specifically to blogs built on the WordPress CMS, but regardless of your platform, this should give you an idea of how it works). There are a few different ways of doing this which you can read here but for the sake of keeping the article as short as possible, I’ll just walk you through one.
Step 1: Add a link to your site in your “Contributor To” section on your Google+ Profile. Google crawls these links to see what sites you say you contribute to.
Step 2: Add the “Better Author Bio” plugin and activate it.
Step 3: Add a link to your Google+ profile from your wordpress user profile bio section. Use this format for the link – https://plus.google.com/YourProfileID?rel=author . The key is the ?rel=author as this tells Google that you are the author.
Step 4: Check that Google is reading everything correctly entering the url into their Rich Snippets Testing Tool.
If everything is setup correctly, you should see your G+ profile image in the test results like this.
That’s it. If you had any problems leave a comment below and I’ll try and answer your questions. I hope everything went smoothly and that you’ve found this article helpful.