Rich snippets in Google SERP’s have previously only been available to authors using the rel=author markup, linking their Google+ profiles with the website they are writing for. However, a few weeks ago there was a lot of talk in the SEO world about Google testing displaying businesses Google+ profile pictures in the rich snippets area of their SERP’s. All that’s required to achieve this is a verified website in your Google+ profile.
Note: It appears that this was just a test from Google and these rich snippets don’t appear to currently be displaying. BUT, if this is a sign of things to come, you need to verify your Google+ links now to be ready to see the benefits!
So how do I verify my website to my Google+ profile?
Use the Rel=Publisher Markup!
Rel=Publisher is just like Rel=Author (see my article on author rank)…but for websites and businesses instead of people. All you need to do to successfully link your Google+ profile to your website is add the Rel=Publisher tag to the sitewide link to your Google+ profile.
So if you don’t have a Google+ profile for your brand or website, create one now! And actually use it! An active Google+ profile will be required and be influential in the future, so get started now!
Implementing Rel=Publisher is easy! All you have to do is add rel=”publisher” to your link code. See the example below the Search Factory website:
Once you’ve added the code, check that it’s been implemented correctly with Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool. If you’ve done it correctly you will see your Google+ profile image appear in your preview.
When you go back to your Google+ profile you will see a small tick next to your website address. This also confirms that the Rel=Publisher tag has been successfully implemented and Google knows!