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Step 53: How to add Google Author to Thesis 2

Google Authorship

What is Google Author?

Ever wonder why some Google search results show the author’s name and picture?  This is called Google Authorship.  Google has provided a way for authors to help Google identify all of their articles.  You want to make it easy for searchers to find your content and this is another powerful tool for you to take advantage of.  Thesis 2 makes it easy to add Google Authorship to your site.  This may help with SEO.  My theory is, the the more Google “properties” you use (G+, Maps, Analytics, Author, Webmaster Tools, Custom Search Engine) the better off your are.

Let’s look a little more closely at the search results above.  If you click on the author’s picture you will be taken to a search page showing all of his articles.  Note that the author’s name is next to the search box and his name is on each of the search results.

Google Author Search

If we click on the author’s name in the search results at the top of this page, we’ll be taken to his Google+ Profile page.  Here, of course, the searcher will be encouraged to “Add to circles”, similar concept to “liking” on Facebook or “following” on Twitter.  This is a powerful marketing tool for you to take advantage of.

Google Plus Author Page

Google Author Rules

Before we dive into adding Google Author to Thesis 2, let’s review Google’s guidelines.  Google has outlined the steps here.  Be sure to follow the rules precisely.  Pay attention to step 4.  If you don’t have the right email address as outlined, there is a second approach linked on the page.  This is the approach I’m taking.  Scroll down to the Option 2 section.  Skip step 1, this will be addressed later in this step.  Note the instructions in step 2.

Google Author Option 2

On your Google+ page,  click on the “Profile” icon, then click “Edit Profile”.

Google Plus Doug Macklem

Scroll down the page and click on “Contributor to” link.  Type in your website URL and click “Save”.

Google Author Contributor Link

Scroll to the top of the page and click the “Done Editing” button.

Google Author Save Profile

Make sure you have a clear profile picture.  Google Author will not work without a profile picture.  If you don’t have one, move your cursor over the picture placeholder and click the bar to change or add a profile photo.  DO NOT PROCEED until you have uploaded a profile picture.

Google Plus Profile Picture

We are finished with our Google+ Profile changes.

WordPress Display Name

Be sure that your WordPress Display Name is the same as your Google+ Name.  Your Display Name will appear in your post byline.

Thesis 2 Google Author Byline

You can set your WordPress Display Name in the WordPress Users Profile page.

WordPress Display Name

Google+ Name.

Google Plus Name

Adding Google Author to Thesis 2 Theme

Now the easy part.  From your WordPress Dashboard click Thesis then Thesis Home.  Click on “Site” => “HTML Head”.

On the right side of the page you will see a box labeled “Google Rel Author”.  Perform a shift-click and drag-and-drop the Google Rel Author box onto the “Head” line.

Thesis 2 Head Editor

The Google Rel Author will now appear in the “Head” structure.

Thesis 2 Head Google Rel Author

Hover over the Author bar and click the gear icon that appears.  It will open a pop-up where you can enter your Google+ ID.

Thesis 2 Google Rel Author

In your browser, open a new tab and go to your Google+ profile.  In the URL you will see a long number.  Copy this number and paste it in the box shown in the image above.

Google Plus ID

Click the “X” in the top right corner of the pop-up.  Next, click the green “Save HTML Head” button.

Thesis 2 Save HTML Head

You can test your changes by clicking the Google structured data testing tool and entering the URL to your site.  If all is working well, it will show you a page with a sample search showing your picture.  It will also give you a message stating “Authorship is working for this webpage”.

Google Structured Data Testing Results

About the author: I’m a techie, a gadget geek, a former programmer, and all-around technology nut. Currently I’m a business analyst for a technology company. I love what technology can do for us. I love smartphones and apps for everything. Building sites with Thesis 2.0 and WordPress help me to reconnect with the feeling of building something tangible.

I’m on: Google+ and Twitter

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Shruti August 13, 2013, 5:21 AM

    I have verified authorship via email and rel=author tag in the structured data testing tool. My headshot appears during testing. But, it doesn’t appear in search results.

    Also, there are 3 instances of author tag in the page. One for G= and two for WP userid from post info. I’m not sure if that has an impact.

    I’m not sure what can be done to get the pic in search results.

  • Doug Macklem August 13, 2013, 8:07 PM

    Hmmm, my picture no longer shows as well. I recently upgraded to Thesis 2.1 and there is another place to list your Google+ profile link under Thesis => Site => Google Authorship. There is also a place in the standard WordPress User Profile page. I’ve added my link but will likely take some time to show up in search results again. I’ll keep an eye on my profile and see if it corrects itself after my change. Until then I can only suggest checking out Google’s information on this: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/2539557?hl=en

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