Are you one of those bloggers who cannot put HTML 5 authorship markups in their “About Me” citation because of HTML sanitizers? Since June 2011, Google bots have been reading rel=author and rel=me markups inside the link tag to improve the relevancy of search results. Since these markups are new, the HTML sanitizers of most web publishers are not yet configured to recognize these tags, leaving their contributors incapable of adding this Google-friendly attributes in their bio links.
The good news is that Google came up with bulletproof alternative to these markups that works despite webmasters’ HTML restrictions.
Standard vs Shorter Implementations
Let’s first discuss how the standard authorship markups are implemented. You can implement the following steps in your own blog.
1. Use rel= “author” attribute in any links pointing to your profile page in the same domain where the article is published. The link can be in the citation section or just below the title of the article with your name as the anchor text.
<a rel= “author” href=”http://www.wordpressblog.com/myprofile” > About Me </a >
2. Use rel = “me” attribute in any links pointing to your Google+ Profile page. The href element should be the URL of your Google+ Profile page.
<a rel= “me” href= “https://plus.google.com/0000/about” >+My Google Profile </a >
3. Link your Google Profile to your blog or any websites that published your articles: ie. http://www.wordpressblog.com/myprofile.
Shorter Alternative: Using Rel=Author Parameter
Google came up with a parameter that you can use instead of markups to add authorship indicator in hyperlinks. To do this, just add the rel=author parameter at the end of the Google Profile URL you used in your article, “About Me” or citation links. A question mark should precede this parameter.
<a href= “https://plus.google.com/0000/about?rel=author” > + About Me </a >*
*Google recommends the use of + character before or after any anchor texts linking to your Google+ Profile.
Outbound Links From Google+ Profile
For those who are new to Google+, you may stumble upon outdated Google+ tutorials on authorship markup integration. At the time of writing, the About section of Google+ Profile is where you need to go to link back to websites that contain your bio links. You need to link back to these sites to verify your authorship.
To do this:
1. Go to Google+ Profile (look for a human avatar at the menu bar or upper rightmost corner of the page) and click Edit Profile.
2 Click About .
3. At the left panel, click Contributor to.
4. Add the URL of the web page that contains a bio link pointing to your Google+ Profile.
Going back to the previous examples, your Contributor to link should be the URL of the web page displaying either one of this Google+ Profile links:
<a rel= “me” href= “https://plus.google.com/0000/about” >+ My Google Profile </a >
<a href= “https://plus.google.com/0000/about?rel=author” >+ About Me </a >
Yes, Authorship Is a Potential Ranking Signal
Google’s recent move to simplify rel=author implementation is a strong sign of AuthorRank-based algorithmic overhaul in the future. It’s not a secret anyway. As Othar Hansson, head of The Authorship Project, publicly declared: “We hope to use this information [rel=author]… as a potential ranking signal in Google.” Let’s cross our fingers and wait how AuthorRank will fare under than hands of black-hat guys.