Google kindly emailed me today to let me know that I’ve established authorship on one of my blogs. Which means my Google profile photo and a link to my Google+ profile can now appear next to my content in search results.
It looks like this:
My example doesn’t use an actual article from Confessions of a Social Media Junkie because I literally just activated Google Authorship on this blog today. However, I’ve had it set up on my work blog for several months now.
Setting up the Google Authorship was pretty easy.
You need a Google+ account (of course) and an email with the same domain as your site or blog. Google gives the full instructions for setting up Google Authorship here.
If you don’t have an email on the same domain as your site there is a
more clunky second option where you can embed a link to your Google+ profile on the pages you publish. It’s better than nothing but requires you to randomly embed a link to your Google+ profile somewhere on your blog post.
Which is alright, but not if it seems completely unrelated to the topic you’re writing about. I don’t want to have to think that hard so I went with option 1.
Note: Apparently there are some WordPress plugins you can use but I’ve not tested any of them.
Why should you care about Google Authorship? Because you’re you.
When it comes to being viewed as an expert or authority on a particular topic, authorship matters. And not just for business sites and blogs either. You have a personal blog? Well who knows more about the content you write (be it about motherhood, quilting or how fabulous your hipster kitty is) than you?
Google Authorship ensures that you are are seen as the original source of your content.
And when your article appears in search results, Google anticipates that your friendly face beside your article is more appealing to the searcher than a plain old link is.
Not only that, there is a chance your article could rank higher in organic search results because your mug appears with it (aka you’re seen as a real human). Note, there is some disagreement over this.
This all goes a long way in helping to build your brand presence online. People connect with people and Google Authorship creates a tie between your online identity and the content you’re creating. (Here’s a great article on Author Rank and why it matters.)
So what do you think? Will you give Google Authorship a try?