Sites With Multiple Authors: Each Author Links Directly to Google Plus
The following is the simplest option for enabling Google Authorship on most Content Management Systems but the one I am using as an example is WordPress (need help with a different CMS?):
- Complete the process found in “What you Must Do Before Installing Rel=Author”
- As an Author access your Author Profile in WordPress after logging in to the their administration area and in the “Contact Info” section under “Website” copy and paste your Google Plus Profile URL with “?rel=author” (minus quotes) tagged to the end without spaces. Make sure everything looks good and then click Save. (i.e. this is how my URL looks:
- Go to your Google Plus Profile and under “About” click “Edit” in the Links section (far right column, lower down) and then add this blog URL (the domain of the site, i.e. www.xyzname.com) within the “Contributor to” field and then save.
- Revisit a post you wrote on this blog and check to make sure your byline (where it says “by <yourname>”) sends you to your Google Plus Profile page when clicked. If you end up with broken link or error then revisit the URL you placed in the “Website” field.
- Verify everything is working by testing one of your blog post URLs in Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool. If you run into any problems follow the suggestions provided by the tool and check over the process again to ensure you didn’t miss anything. If all else fails then contact an expert or qualified friend to assist you; sometimes another pair of eyes can fix it in no time.
- You are done! In time Google will have indexed all of your articles with the new rel=author link and if any of the posts are ranking well in search results they should soon show your Google Profile headshot and social connection information.
Sites With Multiple Authors: Use the Rel=Me Link from Each Author’s Bio Page
The other option for any multiple author site is to have each author byline link directly to their onsite bio page with the “rel=author” microformat added to the hyperlink as shown below.
<a href="http://www.stepforth.com/blog/author/rossdunn" rel="author">by Ross Dunn</a>
Now that all of the Author’s bylines are using “rel=author” and are pointing to their Bio page you then include a single link to their Google Plus Profile from their About Page using the “rel=me” microformat (shown in code below). You can place the link either as a Google Plus button or include the following code in the header of the Author page:
<link rel="me" href="put Author’s Google Plus Profile URL here" />
The trick with any Content Management System (CMS) is to ensure this process is automated using each Author’s unique information. This is not usually difficult for a website developer of even the most modest experience; however, that does depend entirely on the capabilities and datedness of the CMS in use.
IMPORTANT: If you happen to be using a Content Management System (CMS) which does not support Google’s Authorship markup then consult the makers of the program and request they add functionality as soon as possible. Why? Well I have already established how important Authorship will be in the near future but aside from that if the CMS provider hears enough requests for this functionality it is likely to be released sooner than later. That said if the CMS provider flat-out ignores or denies your request then I would strongly consider questioning the long term validity of the system you are utilizing.
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