The Non-Programmer’s Guide to Setting a Google Authorship Picture for WordPress Pages

Fahrenheit Marketing in Design

Code can be scary. And adding snippets of code to the header.php of your WordPress installation is one operation you don’t want to botch. At Fahrenheit Marketing, we’ve created a 10-minute guide to establishing Google Authorship for your WordPress pages, without touching a line of HTML.

“What’s a Google Authorship Picture?”

Google Authorship pictures are fun. They say, “I’m here on the Internet and I know what I’m doing.” They add visual interest to your search engine listings and (can) make people more apt to click on them.

Here’s Fahrenheit’s Google Authorship picture:


Without even clicking on the search listing, you know that Fahrenheit is run by Ricardo Casas and he’s having a great time doing it.

Now let’s get your smiling face posted.

Step One: Install the Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin

You don’t need to worry about what Yoast or SEO means, (the former is a Dutch company, the latter is a form of Internet marketing we excel at) you just need to know that this plugin will make your life easier. Aside from letting you write page titles and meta descriptions without touching your html (both posts for another day), the WordPress SEO Plugin will automatically add the code for Google Authorship once we complete the remaining steps.

Step Two: Make/Add to Your Google Account

Most of you will probably have some sort of Google (Gmail, YouTube) account. If you don’t, you can make an account here.

Login to your account. If you haven’t already, you can add your picture and then crop it.

Now comes an important part: Click edit your profile and scroll down to the Contributor field.


Click the contributor field and then add the website you’d like your picture to be associated with.


Click Save.

Step Three: Add Your Google Plus URL to Your WordPress Profile

While still logged in to Google Plus, copy the URL associated with your account. Ricardo’s personal URL looks a little like this:


With your URL copied to your clipboard, login to your installation of WordPress. Go to Users>>Your Profile. You should see something like this:


Now paste your Google Plus URL into the Google+ field.

Click Update Profile.

Step Four: Make Sure You’re the Author Associated with Each Page

If you only have one log-in to your WordPress installation, you’re probably done. Drink a hot chocolate in triumph.

If you have multiple usernames/logins to your WordPress site, you need to check that you’re the author on each page. Then drink a hot chocolate in triumph.

Click Pages.

Here you can see that Ricardo is the author of each page:


If your user isn’t the author of each page, click Quick Edit and change that:


Step Five: Wait for Google to Recognize Your Change

The big G should recognize your changes within a few days. If it’s been more than a week, you’ve probably done something wrong. Post a comment and we’ll try to help.

Best wishes on your journey and let’s make the Internet smile!

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