Thursday, June 14, 2012

How To Integrate with Google+ and Create a Rich Snippet

Last night I was determined to figure out how to integrate my website with Google+.  It took me a little bit to figure out the correct procedure, but in the end I got it.  So to save you loads of time I thought I would share How To Integrate With Google+


But before I begin, a little background on what Google Calls Rich Snippets.  Google tries to present users with the most useful and informative search results. The more information a search result snippet can provide, the easier it is for users to decide whether that page is relevant to their search. With Google+ and rich snippets, you can now provide a picture of your Google+ account to go along with an entry.  Now it is still up to Google as to whether the Rich Snippet gets displayed.

Google needs 2 pieces if information to connect a website to a Google+ Account
1. Your Website or Blog must be listed as part of your Google+ Contributor's links and must be public.
2. You must add your Google+ Author account information to the website

Setting Up a Google+ Contributor link

If you haven't already created a google plus account, create one.
Once your Google+ account is created follow these steps

1. Log Into Your Google+ Account
2. On the sidebar click the [Profile] Tab
3. Once the profile page opens, click on the [Edit Profile] button
4. Scroll down to the {Contributor} section and click it
The Contributor section allows you to display what websites or blogs you contribute to.
5. Click the "Add Custom Link" link.  2 fields will display.  The first field is a website/blog description and the second field is the actual url for the website/blog.
6. Enter your website information into the 2 provided fields and click [Save] button
Make sure that the Contributor section is set to "Public"

Adding Google+ Author Information to the website

You will need admin rights to your website if your using wordpress or FTP or RDP access to be able to modify your main template.

1. Log into your Google+ Account to get your Google+ Id information
2. On the sidebar click the [Profile] Tab
In the Address bar at the top, the URL is your Google+ Id information
The address will look something like ""
3. Copy the entire address and add it between the 2 quotes.
<link rel="author" href=""/>
The above string represents your Google+ Author string
4. Connect to your website via FTP or RDP or via an admin panel.
5. Add the <link rel="author" href="YourGoogle+IDInfoGoesHere"/> to your main template in the header section of the code.

It appears Google has changed their formatting.  The new formatting is
<a href="[profile_url]?rel=author">Google</a>

Here are some warning you might have received 

Warning: Missing required field “entry-title”

This error occurs when Google snippet cannot find the title.
<h1><?php the_title(); ?></h1>
<h1 class=”title entry-title”><?php the_title(); ?></h1>
note: some themes has h2 instead of h1.

Warning: Missing required field “updated

This error occur when Google Snippet cannot find date it was published or last updated.
To solve this find,
“<?php the_date();?>”
and replace it with
<div class=”date updated”>
Published on <?php the_time(‘F S, Y’); ?>

Warning: Missing required hCard “author”

This error occur when Google is unable to find the author of the post. This part use elements from hCard microformat which are ”vcard” and ”fn”.
To solve this,
Find : <?php the_author(); ?>,
and replace it with;
<span class=”vcard author”><span class=”fn”><?php the_author(); ?></span></span>

Test Your Work

To test your newly added code works, you can used Google Webmasters Tool called RichSnippets.


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