Rel = author (or how to get your picture in Google search results)

I have been meaning to highlight this for ages… how to get your picture displayed in Google search results.  The image below will best describe what I mean…

rel=author

It’s been shown to improve click through rates (although presumably it’s somewhat dependant on the picture you have…?).  The benefit is understandable, as it makes the results stand out from the crowd a little.

The good news is that this is incredibly easy to achieve if you have the WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast installed (if you don’t, contact me to discuss having it installed & configured on your website).

First, you need a Google+ profile.  Check that:

  1. You have a profile picture uploaded (and one that you want to appear in the search results!)
  2. Your +1’s are public on your profile
  3. You have a link back from your profile to the website you want the author highlight to work on (e.g. in the ‘Contributor’ section of your profile).
  4. While you’re looking at Google+, make a note of your profile URL.   You can find it by viewing your profile, and copying the URL from the browser address field, taking out the ‘posts’ or ‘about’ at the end.  Mine, for example, is: https://plus.google.com/114957239003207613439/ (rather empty at the moment… set up for the express purpose of demonstrating how this works!)

Then comes the nice and simple bit.  Go to your user profile in WordPress (Users -> [your username]), and scroll down until you see the Google+ field.

Paste your Google+ profile URL into this box.

Lastly, tell WordPress SEO which ‘author’ to show for your home page (if any).  From the WordPress main left hand menu, go to SEO -> Titles & Metas -> Home, and set the  ‘Author highlighting’ as per your wishes.

You can read more from the author of WordPress SEO here.

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