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Friday, 19 August 2011

Getting the cute profile picture in Google search results

Looking for something this morning and I noticed peoples picture appearing next to some searches :
Some random person
Apparently easy. Well the first part was, getting a full sign off on the webmaster snippets testing tool took a fair amount of reading.
You need :
  1. Website, Blog, or I think pretty much anything online would work as long as you can edit the code
  2. Google profile
Your going to create a link between those two things which Google magic uses to look you up in searches that hit your content.

On your site/blog create a link to your Google profile :
Your profile url will be something like :

NB// the rel="author" is the super important bit.

I already had a Google+ link (top left) on my blog so just added the rel="author"

Next step is to edit your Google profile so that it includes a link to the site you just added the link on.

Running the snippet test tool against this blog gave me a single error :
Warning: Missing required field "updated".
4 hours later and much reading I came across this which talks about enabling your blog for hatom, part of the microformats initiative - and way out of the scope for this post.

The pertinent part for me was the class='timestamp-link' section with the class 'updated'. And the part missing from my blogger template.

Edit the design of your template and go into raw edit HTML, enable the widget check box and then search for the text 'timestamp-link'.

In my template there were two entries. Add 'updated' to the class. Save and re-run the snippet test, you should be good.
<a class='timestamp-link updated' expr:href='data:post.url' rel='bookmark' title='permanent link'><abbr class='published' expr:title='data:post.timestampISO8601'><data:post.timestamp/></abbr></a>
So now you wait <insert Google time> until they get around to crawling the site and updated the index.


  1. Helpful post but for the lack of clarity about the critical part about "adding 'updated' to the class". Could you please elaborate ?

  2. Added some text ... See if that helps, if not let me know.