Google Authorship - One simple thing you should do now

You know how sometimes, you search for help on how to do things, say "why should I use Google+" or "how to do something" (sorry, I'm blanking on things I usually search for right now but you get my drift!) and someone's headshot shows up beside the link to their article?

That's Google Authorship, and if you're a blogger, if you write for publications and your articles show up online, you should a) use Google+ and b) have your sites linked to your profile.

Here's how:

First, set up your Google+ profile if you haven't already. Just do it. I think we're way past the point of "but no one's using Google+ except Google employees." People are using now and if you want more traffic to your content, it's time.

So go to plus.google.com and get yourself a profile. Do it now, I'll wait.

Done? Cool. Next, setting up Google Authorship and linking to your blog/s. There's 2 ways you can do it and 2 ways you should if a lot of your content isn't just at yourwebsite.com:

Go to plus.google.com/authorship. It's going to ask you to enter an email to which it'll send a verification. Do that first and follow the directions.  **This method didn't work for me (if any of you know why that might be, let me know) and the next option worked better and this will be the start towards getting your profile picture and links to show up in search.

1) Go to your Google+ profile and click About

google-authorship-set-up

2) Scroll down to the Links box (bottom right) and click on Edit. An edit screen will pop up.

3) Make sure your links are public. In fact, make sure everything on this screen says "public."

4) At the bottom, click on "Add Custom Link" and add the links for all the blogs and sites you write for, starting with your own. Be honest about it, if you were a past contributor, say so.

5) Click save

 

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

There you go! Bear in mind, Google doesn't guarantee that your profile will show up but, as a start, this is the simplest way to link everything to your Google+ profile. There are other factors that determine whether you show up like your profile picture (make sure it's a good one), whether your email is verified, and that your content is then linked back to your Google+ profile.

I use Squarespace, and there's a form in which I can enter my profile's link. Wordpress should have one as well.

If you're ready to get even more in-depth with this (and I'll admit, I'm currently trying to work out the kinks myself) check out this article by Andy Crestodina on Kissmetrics on how you can test to see if your linking is working, and also how you can link to sites on which you're a guest blogger.

Hope this helps you a little!

**Have you run into any problems verifying your email through Google's Authorship set-up? How'd you fix it? Let me know in comments or shoot me an email!