We now support markup that enables websites to publicly link within their site from content to author pages. For example, if an author at The New York Times has written dozens of articles, using this markup, the webmaster can connect these articles with a New York Times author page. An author page describes and identifies the author, and can include things like the author’s bio, photo, articles and other links.
Authorship is a great way to identify and highlight high-quality content. Plus, the web is centered around people. People discovering content on the web often want to learn more about its author, see other content by that author, and even interact with the author.
The new author markup is currently showing up in search results for a select group of authors but will be expanding to include more. A picture of the author appears to the right of a search result with a link to their Google Profile. Here is an example of what it looks like:
Advantage For Lawyers Who Publish Content
I think it’s fairly obvious that this is a worthwhile thing for attorneys to investigate setting up. Having your photo and information next to articles you write and distribute on the web can help build your reputation, increase click-through rates, and establish your credibility.
How To Setup Authorship Markup
Setting up authorship markup requires a very basic understanding of html and hyperlinks. Google’s authorship markup help section explains:
To identify the author of an article, Google checks for a connection between the content page (such as an article), an author page, and a Google Profile.
- A content page can be any piece of content with an author: a news article, blog post, short story, etc.
- An author page is a page about a specific author, on the same domain as the content page.
- A Google Profile is Google’s version of an author page.
In confirming authorship, Google looks for:
- Links from the content page to the author page (if the path of links continues to a Google Profile, we can also show Profile information in search results)
- A path of links back from your Google Profile to your content.
These reciprocal links are important: without them, anyone could attribute content to you, or you could take credit for any content on the web.
Setup Your Google Profile
In order to lay out the path of links Google describes above, we will need to first create a Google Profile. Doing so is fairly self-explanatory and frankly is a good idea even if you choose not to establish the authorship markup. Here are a few tips from Google on getting the most from your Google Profile:
- Update your Google profile with links to any of your other author pages around the web. For example, you could add your Twitter and Flickr profiles, or sites you contribute to. (To add links to your profile, click Edit profile, then click the Links box on the right of the page and add the links you want.)
- Your profile picture must be a picture of yourself and of high quality in order to be eligible for be shown as a thumbnail in search results. Consider using a headshot—it’s more easily recognized.
- To easily link to your Google Profile, add the Profile button to your site.
- When Google detects content you’ve marked as yours, we’ll list that content on the +1 tab of your Google Profile (we’ll do this automatically as soon as you’ve +1’d at least one webpage). You’ll need to create at least one +1 on your own (look for the button on search results or around the web) before we can add authored content to your +1 tab. Then go to your Google profile, click on “Edit Profile”, and then click on the checkbox “Show this tab on my profile”
Finally, you will add a link to your author/bio page on your Google Profile. To do this, select “About”, the blue Edit Profile button next to your name, and click on the links box on the right side of your profile. This will allow you to edit and add links. You are going to give your link a title, add the link to your author/bio page, and then check the box that reads “This page is specifically about me”. Your Google profile is now ready to go.
Setting Up Your Bio/Author Page
I would suspect that most attorneys have a bio page or author page setup on their law firm website or blog already. However, if you do not then you will want to create one. Next, you will add a Google profile button to your author/bio page. Google provides an easy to use tool that will take care of creating the snippet of code for you.
To use the tool, you will need to know the url for your Google Profile. You can find this on your Google Dashboard under the profile section. Here is a screenshot of what it looks like:
Next you will copy and paste your profile url, select “author page” as the type of page linking to your Google Profile, and select the size of the profile button you wish to use. The code will be automatically generated and you should add this to your bio/author page.
Properly Linking From A Content or Article
When you write an article, you are going to want to create a link back to your author page or Google Profile. To do so, you will simply add a link that contains the rel=”author” tag. Most blogs have a byline you can create that automatically creates a link back to your author page. You can see mine at the end of this post. If not you can do this by hand and add the info at the end or beginning of your article. Here is an example of what the link will look like:
<a rel=”author” href=”https://www.attorneysync.com/about/jeff-berman/”>
If you have any questions about the authorship markup or setting it up, don’t hesitate to contact us.