How to Increase Traffic 150% to Your Blog

Google Authorship FeatureChances are, that you’ve been seeing pictures of people show up beside your search results for some time now. Well, these pictures that show up are due to rich snippets that are put on your website. Specifically, authorship rich snippets.

By now, you may be asking how adding pictures to your posts on Google could increase your traffic, and that is a valid question.

Catalyst wrote an article where they proved a theory that rich snippets include CTR, which will increase your traffic. Below are the results that Catalyst saw.

Catalyst Rich Snippet Results

This will become increasingly important in the future as the internet becomes more social. Your website appears more welcoming with a picture beside your website on Google search results. There are also theories that Google will begin including more and more social data into their algorithm.

After seeing results like this, the question becomes, “If adding rich snippets to a website can create such positive results, then why isn’t everyone using them?”

The Process

Bottom line, the process is a little bit complicated.

  1. Have a Google+ profile
  2. Have a byline for every post with your name
  3. Make sure the byline name matches the name on your Google+ profile
  4. Have an email address that matches your url. Ex. eric@artofblog.com – OR- You can link your content with an “?rel=author” link

It’s not crazy difficult to set up, but it sure is a pain in the rear-end. But, there is an easier way. One that I wish I knew of when I hand coded authorship for Art of Blog!

AuthorSure

AuthorSure is a free plugin for WordPress that will help you get the Google Authorship Rich Snippets set up on your website. In the plugin settings, you are given several options for how you would like the Google authorship markup implemented.

AuthorSure Options

I personally recommend the Author Box option. We had issues on Art of Blog when first implemented Google Authorship with multiple authorship URLs showing up on a same page. If you have a single author blog, this shouldn’t be an issue though.

You should go to your Google+ profile and add a link to all websites you blog/guest post on in the “Contributor to” section. Below is a screenshot.

In Closing

Once you have gone through the necessary steps above, you can test your Google Authorship Markup by going to the Google Rich Snippets Tool. You can type in a URL, and Google will give you a preview of what your page will look like in Google search results. Below is a screenshot from when I tested my article, “How I Manage Blogging with a Busy Life.”

Google Rich Snippets Tools

This process has several steps, but with the help of AuthorSure, it is not super difficult. If you have any questions or comments, leave them below. I’d like to know how the process went for you, and if you are seeing any increase in traffic from using Google authorship and/or rich snippets.

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Written by Eric Binnion

Eric Binnion is a computer science student at Midwestern State University. When Eric is not online, he is usually volunteering in his community or enjoying time with his family. You can find Eric on Twitter.

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Comments

  • Marcus says:

    Hey Eric,

    Thanks for this was always wondering how to get my pic onto Google like this. I think there is one step in the process that isn’t clear – you need to add your WordPress author link to your Google+ profile.

    Your author link will be something like domain.com/author/user.

    Not exactly sure what this did (the AuthorSure help pages told me to do it), but the pic’s weren’t showing until I added this.

    Note: I’m using an author box, maybe it’s only needed for that…

    cheers
    Marcus

    • Eric Binnion says:

      Hey Marcus,

      There are a few ways to do it. You can link to your author page, or you can have a link to the main page in the “Contributor to” section. I personally use the second option on Art of Blog and other sites.

      If I remember correctly, there is a double and a triple link method. As long as you got it going, then I am happy :)

  • Will says:

    Thanks for sharing this Eric, I had no idea how those images appeared in google search results. I’m off to try this out for myself. Looking forward to seeing if it makes a difference to visitor traffic numbers.

  • Shelley says:

    Do you think an Gravatar would be beneficial or do you think a photo of yourself would be better?

  • Sreejesh says:

    Great! I just installed this plugin, is there any way to make the links in the author bio section nofollow.