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The Evolution of Google Authorship Rich Snippets

Google Authorship has been the most intriguing developments in the search industry for the past couple of years.

With exciting predictions like one that Google will identify “subject authorities” or another one that author-verified results will be ranked higher, it’s obvious that search marketers have been watching it with much anticipation.

authorshipSo far, despite the bright predictions, Google is obviously struggling, going after the low-hanging fruit (quoting Mark Traphagen) and using domain trust and backlink power and transferring those metrics to Authorship results (thus trying to identify who of the authors deserves a rich snippet, for example).

The good thing we still have NOW is author identities in search results! And it’s already very rewarding! Authors do get a much higher exposure from search results thanks to the authorship-powered rich snippet.

There have been a lot of experiments, so let’s see how Authorship rich snippets have been evolving and changing over time!

The Evolution of Google Authorship Search Snippets


Have I missed any? Please share your screenshot!

[I have also put together the Google Authorship FAQ at SEOchat trying to address most common questions. Please let me know if anything needs to be added to it!]

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  1. 15 Responses to “The Evolution of Google Authorship Rich Snippets”

  2. The thought of subject authorities is very exciting. State-level identity verification? Less so!

    So, where so publisher”ship” fit into all this? Have there been many changes in Google’s publisher verification, or are we still in phase one?

    By Matt on Jan 31, 2014

  3. Hey Matt! I’ll publish the Authirship timeline at IMN blog tomorrow and I’ll link it here! So far it seems to be still a phase 1 though!

    By Ann Smarty on Feb 2, 2014

  4. Looking forward to reading it.

    I just incorporated publisher verification into every page on Springboard SEO. I’m curious to see how long it will take to see my icon appear in the serps..

    By Matt on Feb 2, 2014

  5. rel=”publisher” markup is only needed on the home page and it only works for navigational queries (those when people are specifically searching for your brand. Please see the Authorship FAQ here:

    By Ann Smarty on Feb 3, 2014

  6. @Matt, here’s the Authorship timeline:

    By Ann Smarty on Feb 3, 2014

  7. Heading there now, thanks!

    By Springboard SEO on Feb 3, 2014

  8. Hi Ann
    You really do have a great advantage in the SERPS if you can get your picture next to your listing.

    Obtaining Google Authorshp can be complicated but fortunately I use a Genesis child theme, which makes it very easy to implement.

    By Keith Davis on Feb 4, 2014

  9. Hi Ann,

    Great post denoting the importance of Google authorship. I love the fact that Google is now giving importance sites with Google authorship.

    If I were the case, I’d click on an article with picture (Google authorship) because of the trust factor. I have also studied that articles with Google authorship gives definitive answers to my queries, so I tend to click them more.

    By Mainak Halder on Mar 21, 2014

  10. Hi Ann,

    Superb post. I think that authorship will only become a factor in Google offering great content and giving author credit for that great content.

    By Rob Broley on Apr 10, 2014

  11. I dont get the part, where there is no photo on google authorship. 10 – 15% to be dropped, what does that sum up? could you explain it? cause i have seen it many times and didnt understand why. Thought it is because of there was no legitimate photo on the account.

    By SEO Take Over SK on May 15, 2014

  12. The Google and its new features … are surprising, cutting-edge and truly useful enhancements.

    By Nida Simons on May 19, 2014

  13. great post Ann, very useful.

    By Tom Wason on Jun 9, 2014

  1. 3 Trackback(s)

  2. Feb 9, 2014: Google Authorship: Notable Events in its History By Ann Smarty
  3. Feb 23, 2014: How Google Authorship Has Been Evolving - Infographic | Doc Marketing
  4. Feb 26, 2014: The Past and the Future of Google Authorship | Search Engine Savvy

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