Getting Started With Google Authorship - For Authors and Webmasters!

By: Daniel Imbellino
Updated: May 14, 2013

Learn How Google Authorship Can Help to Add Authority and Validity to Your Content and Boost Your Search Engine Rankings. We will show you how to implement Google Authorship into both your standard and Wordpress websites, as well as how to create a Google plus page to link to your site and implement Google+ social networking buttons on your site.The power of social networking today lies with Google+. We're going to cover some of the best ways to take Google's powerful social networking platform to the next level.

Google Authorship provides a way for web content creators to add identifiable information about themselves to their posts online. Here we’re going to show you how to implement this feature in different ways, both with standard websites you’ve coded yourself and with Wordpress sites as well. Google Authorship will display a picture and sometimes additional information about a particular author in search results. Google feels that being able to identify with an author of an article online helps to add validity and authority to your content since viewers will have an actual person to identify with, and not just here say. If you are only using Wordpress you can skip down to that section below.

Let’s Get Started with Authorship!

You will first need to setup a Google+ profile under your Google account. By default your Google profile is set to public, which is what you want if you want to be identified in organic search results. Use your full name to identify yourself, not a shady name that no one can make sense of. The whole point of Authorship is to add validity to a post, not a screen name on a forum. Take a good screen shot of yourself to include in your profile, you will get the chance to crop the image as well from your profile page under the edit section.

After you’ve created and setup your Google+ profile you will need to create a link from your page or pages that you want to include your authorship information using an anchor in your HTML body somewhere, like so:

<a href="[profile_url]?rel=author">Google</a> Simply replace profile URL with your plus ID.

To get your profile URL simply go to your Google+ page and click on profile, then copy and select the entire URL up to the point where the digits end. It should look something like this:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/1138121787137873670

Don’t copy past the end digit like this:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/1134121787193873670/posts

The series of numeric digits makes up your profile ID and this is the only part you want to include! So a full anchor link should look like this with the question mark included:

<a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/113421787193873670?rel=author">Google</a>

Now you need to add a reciprocal link from your Google+ profile that points back to the site you have implemented authorship too. From your Google+ page click on profile, then edit towards the top of the screen, then click on “about”, scroll down to the contributor to section, click on contributor, copy the URL of the site you are implementing your authorship to. Now your Authorship information is verified and Google can return your pages in search results using your picture and author information. You can include the anchor tag anywhere you want within your HTML body. In an opening paragraph would be a great place to implement this, or in a by: line. Keep in mind the method we just showed you is strictly on a per post basis! This means you would need to include the anchor with every post you create.

Method Two:

If you own your domain and have a verifiable email address on that domain, you can verify with your email and just include a “by whoever” line or “author: your-name-here” (without the quotes) in each post to identify to Google that you want to include your authorship info in this post. If your domain is called “seonow.com” for instance you will need an email on that same domain that you can use to verify with. You could create an email using your name for instance like so:

Karen@seonow.com

You can verify your email here:

Verify your email with Google

This will add your email to the work section of your Google+ profile and Google will use this to verify your domain. Remember, every post must have a “by” or “Author” line with the same name as you have listed on your profile, otherwise this will not work! No anchor tag is required to implement this procedure.

Method Three – Implementing Google Authorship with Wordpress:

From your Wordpress dashboard, select appearance, widgets, then create a text widget from which you can copy and paste the code shown below.

For your widget title type: Follow Me on Google+

Now in your text widget box copy and paste the code below:

<a style="cursor:pointer;display:inline-block;text-decoration:none;color:#0000FF;font:16px/16px arial, sans-serif;" href="https://plus.google.com/11178793787670?prsrc=3" rel="publisher"><span style="display:inline-block;font-weight:bold;vertical-align:top;margin-right:5px;margin-top:8px;">
<strong>YOUR NAME HERE</strong></span>
<span style="display:inline-block;vertical-align:top;margin-right:15px;margin-top:8px;">on</span><img style="border:0;width:32px;height:32px;" src="https://ssl.gstatic.com/images/icons/gplus-32.png" alt=""></a>

Replace the URL on line 3 with the URL from the address bar of your Google+ profile up to the last numeric digit with no forward slashes, make sure to leave the question mark in place. On line 5 between the “strong” tags enter your name as it appears on your Google+ profile. You can add the text widget wherever you choose, a great place would be a side bar of some sorts towards the top of the page where it’s easily visible to others.

Method Four – Creating a Google+ page to link to your website and adding Google+ social networking buttons and badges to your pages.

Here we’re going to show you how to create a Google+ page for your website and link your site to your plus page. First go to: Google plus to create a new page . If you are a localized business, be sure to select “local” from the options listed so you can include your geographic location. Follow the prompts and complete all the necessary steps to finish building your page. You can now switch between both your personal profile page and your websites page by simply clicking on your name at the top right side of the screen from your plus pages profiles.

You need to create a logo or include a personal pic to include in search results, although a logo seems a bit more professional in this case. Simply click on the profile photo to upload your new photo and crop it to your liking. Your profile picture can be 250x250 pixels in dimension. You can also upload a cover photo which sets next to your user profile photo, this can have a max width of 980px and max height of 180px. There’s just one problem, the profile photo actually overlaps a large portion of the cover photo! If your cover photo has text or a design you want users to see then you will need to re-size the image smaller so it fits in the refined space. 600px or lower would be a good pick, or crop your text to left side of the image.

From your new Google+ page, click profile, edit, select website and include a link to the full URL of your homepage. Now you need to go to your websites home page and copy and paste this link into the head section of that page, like so:

<link href="{plusPageUrl}" rel="publisher" />

For example:

<link href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/10644157724537326031" rel="publisher" />

Now people will be able to view your sites Google plus page and will have the option to add it to their circles. In most cases Google will include your plus page’s logo in search results.

Now we can add social networking buttons to your site. Make sure you are logged into your Google profile, then proceed to:

Google+ badges and social networking buttons

Under “Google+ user” near the top left of the page use the drop down box to select the correct plus page you want to use. Now select the corresponding badge that you prefer. There are 3 general options for badges, icon, small badge, and standard badge. The icon is the smallest and takes up the least amount of space, while the standard includes your page name, a plus one button, a Google badge, and a “follow” link. The small badge doesn’t unclude the plus one button so it takes up much less space. The large badge has the advantage of including example images of your most recent followers next to the “+1” button below your badge. If you have the space to spare, this is probably not a bad idea. Once you have selected the badge you want, just click inside the box below and copy and paste the code into your page or pages where you want your badge to appear. You can also use just the plus one button alone if you prefer by selecting “plus one” from the menu on the left of this page.

Note: Many users have found working the image constraints in Google plus to very intimidating. If you are having trouble getting your images to the right size, consider downloading the free graphics program paint.net. Install and launch the program, click file and navigate to and open the image file you need to resize. Now click “image” at the top left of the navigation menu, then select resize, and you will notice a dialog box popup that show the current dimensions of your image file. By default the “maintain aspect ratio” box is checked, and this will cause your image to scale accordingly if you change either the width or height of your image. If you don’t want your image to scale in proportion just deselect the box before changing the values. When you are finished click file, save as, and assign a name to your image file, click ok. You can download paint.netHere .

We will be updating this article in the future to keep up with changes to the way Google Authorship is implemented. Google has made several revisions to this program in the past, and we are making every effort possible to make sure this page remains up to date!