One the best things you can do for your blog and your online presence is create a Google + profile and link it to your blog and then link your blog to your Google+ profile.
But what happens if you want to claim authorship for a blog in Google and you realize that you already have another Google account under your name that you want to keep private?
Or if you want nothing to do with Google+ but Google has created a profile for an email or other Google account that you do not want to make visible?
Here is how to remove profile visibility in Google Search for Google accounts you want to keep private.
1. Sign into google with the profile you want to keep private
2. Go here: https://profiles.google.com/
3. If your profile is visible you should see a page that looks like this:
4. Choose to Edit profile
5. Scroll down
6. Click on line that reads Profile visible in search and unclick the box:
Your profile should now read Profile not visible in Search like below:
7. Save and exit and that should remove your personal profile from search.
One of my blogging best practices recommendations is using your metrics to guide future topics. Topics that get a lot of traffic and keyword referrals deserve revisiting. Topics with no traffic are duds. While I’ve always intended to blog about search and social and other technology topics, I see that [evil kittens] is one of my top referrals. What this tells me is:
- I’m not getting the majority of my traffic for the keywords I’ve optimized this blog for
- The market for [evil kitten] posts is not saturated in the same way that blogs about SEO and Social best practices is (hence my ability to capture traffic related to [evil kittens])
- I may need to address the evilness of kittens because the public needs to know
- However,this blog is not about [evil kittens]
I came across this article, AuthorRank could be more disruptive than all of the Panda updates combined, this morning and decided it was time to practice what I preach. I’ve been advising our bloggers to link their blogs to Google+ as well as work on their Google+ visibility, and this post persuaded me it was time to update my blog.
There is a great Rel=Author Step By Step Tutorial For WordPress here for people who may not be on Google+ yet and it may work for most people.
But the instructions vary depending on your blog host and your theme. I host my own wordpress blog and it just so happened that I’m using a theme that does not support menus or allow for automatically adding a bio to each post. And despite the fact that it probably is time to update my blog theme, I was not feeling it this afternoon.
So I looked for another solution. Because this post, rel=”author” and rel=”me” in WP and other platforms, went a little deeper I was able to figure out why I was getting this error over and over again:
linked author profile = http://www.ljbanks.com/author/admin/
Error: Author profile page does not have a rel="me" link to a Google Profile. Learn more.
The good thing is, you can test how your snippets will theoretically show in the SERPs here as many times as you like: http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/richsnippets
Here is what worked for me (YMMV so refer to the links above for more complete instructions):
- I finally updated my wordpress profile to reflect my actual name and not “admin” (I know, I know…)
- I linked my “Contributor to” to field in the right nav of my Google + profile page to my “About” page on my blog.
- Then I linked my blog to my Google Profile. To do this I added a badge with a link to my Google profile in my sidebar. However, if you use this tool to create a badge it will give you a “rel=”author” and in my case I needed a “rel=me.” Easy enough to change, but something to keep in mind. The Google instructions for tying your blog to your Google + profile did not make that part clear.
- Tested it in the Rich Snippet Tester
Now I can make recommendations to our bloggers with a clean conscience. And it was a good exercise for me to set my Profile up to claim my own blog posts and start tying the topics I post about to my name and increasing my ownership and hopefully future visibility in Google.
This Wednesday I drove out to my local IBM HQ to get a new badge. After 10 years, my magnetized badge no longer works with most of the new badge readers. I had to turn in my old badge, and when I hesitated a moment in handing it over to the security guy who made my new one, he was apologetic. Apparently I’m not the only IBMer who feels nostalgic about his/her first badge. But it’s not really the badge I’m nostalgic for, it’s the me I was a decade ago. Ten years ago I came into IBM as an intern with training in Usability and Testing, Technical writing, and HTML. I was so proud of my HTML skills. I had several Geocities Web sites and a blogspot blog. I cringe now when I think of the graphics and the coding and the silly stuff I posted to the internet (in Web 2.0, you post pictures of your cat on Facebook, not your blog). Mercifully, Yahoo finally put those Geocities sites out of their misery a year ago. And the good thing is, I have learned so much in the past 10 years that those early sites do not reflect who I am and what I know anymore.
Ten years at one of the largest technology companies in the world, working with some of the most talented developers, marketers, and business people in the world (seriously), has taught me a lot. Over the years, I have learned how little I know (apparently there is more to the Web than basic HTML) and how valuable it is to surround myself with a team of people who know more. And the best teachers I’ve had at IBM were the people who never came right out and pointed out the gaps in my knowledge, but instead patiently walked me through what I absolutely needed to know to get my job done. I cannot thank those people enough — especially knowing that initially, I probably pissed a lot of them off coming in with my “great ideas” without a clue of what needed to be done to implement them.
My decade of learning experiences (many of them painful) have not made me give up on “great ideas” but I have a better understanding now of what it takes to be a good colleague in a large, multi-skilled, multi-country and time zone organization. And one action I’ve learned is key no matter where you sit in the organization is to be respectful. Some people call this by different names — having patience, being flexible, practicing kindness, etc. But if you always have Be Respectful at the top of your ToDo list, you will come to the end of each day with more goals reached and more of your humanity intact. And being respectful helps you create those teams of smart people you need to surround yourself in order to complete those complicated projects. Some days it’s hard to remember and I let my eagerness to get the job done at any cost get in the way of being my most respectful self — I’m not perfect. But each day is a work in progress.
Audience, Relevance, and Search: Targeting Web Audiences with Relevant Content
I’ve worked with many people on Search Optimization over the years I’ve been Search Solutionating and James, Frank, and Cynthia belong to a small subset of people I’ve met at IBM who truly “get” what the purpose of Search Optimization is.
I’ve never had to waste any time with them describing the “why” behind Search Optimization and Findability. That alone is a treat — but also, I’ve learned a fair amount from working with them and a whole lot more from reading their book “Audience, Relevance, and Search: Targeting Web Audiences with Relevant Content”.
This book is of a far higher quality than many of the search marketing books I have read (or attempted to slog through) during the search engine book boom of the past 10 years. James, Frank, and Cynthia provide a thoughtful approach to creating content that improves the user experience of search AND of your Web site. Because it’s all about the content — a little detail that Digital Marketers often forget in their quest for #1 rankings in Google.
As a Technical Search Marketer I said “amen” to many of the ideas presented in this book – not because I had already thought them myself (I wish!), but because James, Frank, and Cynthia put into words a way of talking about search that built on what I already knew and put it in a broader context of user behavior and relevance. I did want tips and guidelines — and I got that. But I also came away with something I would not expect: A greater understanding of why the user experience of search works or doesn’t work the way it does.
This book also goes even further, providing suggestions as to how to use that new understanding to not just write content for a #1 ranking, but instructions on how to create better content for the user.
I think this book would be of use, if not a revelation in some cases, for anyone in Digital Marketing (from novices to experienced SEOs), bloggers, journalists, Web content creators, and anyone who does anything on the Web.