Google Authorship is dropped from search results

After just a few short years, Google Authorship is no more. I posted about how they were dropping author photos from search results to clean up their design, but now it seems they are dropping the rel=author markup altogether. John Mueller announced it’s death here saying that not enough people were using it and when they were they weren’t properly completing the steps. Google Search users will still see posts from Google+ friends and pages so expanding your Google+ circles still has that benefit. Google Authorship was the only reason I, and many others, used Google+ to begin with. Now Google Authorship has been removed from search results but posts and profiles from your Google+ circles are still there. This may attract people to focusing on growing their connections on that platform, increasing usage rather than accounts. In general, this shouldn’t affect your SEO. Having a Google+ profile and posting your content there is still recommend for the other reasons I pointed out in this post.

You can leave the authorship markup in place, it won’t do any damage to your site. The publisher markup is not affected. What’s the difference between author and publisher? Publisher markup is about connecting websites (not people as with author!) to a Google+ page (not profile!). You can implement rel=publisher markup if you have a Google+ page setup for your blog, it’s done basically the same way as Google Authorship (blogger tutorial/ wordpress tutorial) but using rel=publisher instead.

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6 comments

  1. Melissa A. on

    I didn’t know about this until I read it here. I’m actually relieved that they quit doing this. It seemed to unfairly reward Google+ users who had huge circles, as opposed to those just starting out who might not be in a lot of circles, but yet still had good content.

    One question: what did you mean by Google+ ‘author profiles’ as opposed to a ‘page’? Should I set up a page on Google+ that has the same name as my blog? It seems author profiles are automatic on Google+ if you sign up for anything on Google, such as gmail.

    Great blog, btw. Glad to have found you and I have you bookmarked ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
    • Elaine M on

      Hello Melissa. Thank you very much! They didn’t really reward G+ users with a large following, they just show content from who you follow on Google Plus because if you follow them you must like their content. They haven’t removed this and theres a button on the homepage to switch back and forth from this feature. They removed Google Authorship, which allowed bloggers who had personal profiles on Google Plus to claim their content all over the web including blog posts, articles, videos and guest posts.

      On Google you can have a profile or a page, similar to Facebook. As a profile you can claim content as an author, as yourself. As a page your company/business/blog can claim content under the business or blog name. Does that make sense?

      Reply