Diaries Magazine

Where Did My Profile Picture Go in Google Search Results?

By Nicoleao @momfever
google authorship missing

Did your profile picture go missing from Google search results?

Did you jump through all the required hoops to get Google Authorship, zo you could have your picture in Google’s search results?

I did!

And it actually worked.

Where did my picture go?!

Until sometime during december 2013. Suddenly my picture went missing. At first I though it was my fault. That I had done something wrong, or my profile picture wasn’t good enough. But it turns out I didn’t do anything wrong. Google did it! Google changed the author algorithm, and suddenly lots of bloggers saw their pictures disappear.

It caused quite a ruckus.

But after everyone recovered from the shock, people started a search party to determine how to get their profile picture back in the Google search results. One of the things they did was look at those lucky ones who still had their picture up.

What it takes to get your picture in the search results

What made these authors different from the poor sobs who could kiss their picture goodbye? It turns out the Lucky Ones had four distinguishing features

  1. These authors had a reputation for high quality content
  2. They had a long history of publishing high quality content
  3. Their posts got lots of social shares
  4. Their blogs attracted lots of quality links

Nothing new really. Every blogger knows it’s important to write quality stuff. But apparently it’s become even more important, if that’s possible.

There’s something strange in the blogger neighbourhood

However there’s something strange going on. As you may know, even though I started a relationship with WordPress.org, I also kept seeing Blogger. I just can’t say goodbye to Blogger!

And if you search for my Blogger blogs you can see my profile picture in the search results! And though I don’t want so speak ill of my Blogger blogs: I don’t think they’re the same quality as my WordPress blogs are.

google authorship picture

My not very succesful blogger blog

But when I google my blog about running Mom’s Home Run I get this:

google profile picture gone

WordPress.org blog, not even my name is in there!

Second class authorship

Apart from the disappearance of many a profile picture, there appears to be a kind of second class authorship. That’s when you don’t see your profile picture, but you do get a mention as the author!

That’s what I get for my Blogger blog that hasn’t seen a new post in years:


Dusty old Blogger blog, but still I get a mention as the author

Investigative report: summing up

So in the case of the disappearing profile picture in Google search results it is said it’s all about quality content and authority as a blogger. I would totally believe that if not for the fact that my Blogger blogs do offer my profile picture, or at least second class authorship.

So I’m a bit confused.

How to check for your profile picture

It’s easy to check if you profile picture is shown: just google your blog. If it’s not there are two options:

  1. You never connected your blog to your Google+ account! Go and do that! You can check if you did it right with the Google Rich Snippet Tool. Just type in your url, and if you did it right you’ll see your picture!
  2. You successfully connected your blog to your Google+ account, but your picture has disappeared. There’s really not all that much you can do. Just make sure you write great quality content and work on your Google+ profile.

Is your profile picture still showing up Google search results?

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