NOTE: This functionality has been removed from Google search.
There’s no longer any benefit to registering authorship on your site. Read more about why Google stopped this program here and here.
Your identity and trustworthiness as a publisher and author is fast becoming a vital part of your ranking with the lord of searches.
That’s why Google created authorship.
It’s yet another way that Google is putting emphasis on relevance and quality content.
NOTE: Even if your authorship verifies in the Google snippets testing tool it may not show up in search results straight away.
This feature is being rolled out gradually, and ranking will be implemented algorithmically, so author information will not always display in search results. ~ Google
1. Your profile image shows up in search results, which look more personal and increases click-through rates.
2. When a user clicks on an authored link, reads their content for about three minutes and then clicks on the back button on their browser, Google adds three additional links to articles underneath the initial one.
3. Users can click on more articles by the author just by clicking on their name within Google results.
4. Google are sure to progressively make authorship more important in the rankings, to help better determine relevancy.
Read the official page on authorship here.
How to setup Google authorship in WordPress
1. Create a Google+ Profile that uses your full name and a clear profile image of your face.
2. Click the Edit Profile button and complete your Google plus profile. Most of this is accessible in the About section.
Fill out your profile and contact information, including other social networks you’re connected to.
Add the sites that you author for into the Contributor to section.
Click the +1’s tab while in edit mode and tick the Show this tab on your profile box.
3. Sign-up for Google authorship here, by verifying your email address. It must use the same domain as your blog URL. e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Verifying that email will add it to your Google plus profile. You may want to change the visibility if that address to private here.
4. Make sure the SEO for WordPress plugin by Yoast plugin is installed and activated.
5. Add your Google+ profile URL to the Google+ field in your WordPress profile at Users >> Your Profile.
To find this, click the profile button on the left-side of Google + and copy the URL from your browsers address bar.
For this to work, the name on your Google+ profile must exactly match your profile page in WordPress.
If you’re using the Genesis framework you will already have an SEO system in place and have no need to install the Yoast plugin.
Log into your WordPress and go to Genesis >> Theme Settings >> Header and Footer Scripts
Paste the code below into the head section, replacing your Google+ Profile URL:
<link rel="author" href="https://plus.google.com/XXXXXXXXXXXX/posts/">
6. In WordPress go to SEO >> Titles & Metas and on the Home tab choose the main site author in the Author highlighting drop-down.
7. Check that authorship is working with the Google rich snippets tool by entering your blog URL home page, or a specific article link you have authored.
NOTE: You can check, and edit the posts that authors have created by going to Posts >> All Posts in WordPress.
Three weeks after implementing this I’ve finally started seeing authorship show up in Google results. But only on some articles. Ahh the mysterious Google algorithm.
If you had any trouble with this implementation, or just want to share your shiny new Google+ profile, please do so in the comments.
You can also join the WordPress Tribe Google+ page here.