Running a blog can be a great way to communicate your ideas, expose your brand to new audiences, and grow your business. But in order to really find success, you need to let your audience know who it is who’s actually writing the content they are consuming. Your readers want to know who is behind the words. So, you’ll need a quality About the Author box.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to add such a box to your WordPress.com website and why it’s so impactful.
There are several elements that all “about the author” boxes should have, including the following:
- A picture of the author — ideally, something that’s personal, informal, and fun.
- The author’s name, clearly visible.
- A short bio — a single paragraph on who the author is, what they do, and what their blog is about.
- Social media and other relevant links — e.g., links to their other projects on the web.
Getting all those individual components prepared is up to you. You can inspire yourself by browsing your favorite blogs and taking notes on what you see in their author boxes.
1. Add a Gravatar Profile Widget
Before we get to building a custom About the Author box, you should start by using a widget that’s built right into WordPress.com.
Log in to your account, go to My Sites, and then in the left sidebar, click on Design → Customize. Click on Widgets and then Add a Widget. From the list, pick Gravatar Profile.
The widget provides you with a couple of customization options:
- Title — optional; you don’t have to add one
- Show Personal Links and Show Account Links — also optional, but you should enable them to get the full profile card experience
Once you click on Done, and then on the main Publish button, your Gravatar Profile will be added to one of the widget areas on your site. It’s going to look something like this:
Note: you need to have a valid Gravatar account to get this feature working. The good news is that all WordPress.com accounts also get a Gravatar profile. All you need to do is customize it and add your info.
The second thing you can do is add a custom author box under your individual blog posts via the WordPress.com editor. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do that.
Start by creating a new post as usual. When you’re done, at the bottom of the screen, add a new block called Media & Text.
This block consists of two sections: the media area on the left and the content area on the right.
Add your profile picture in the media area. If the picture takes too much space on the screen, grab onto the blue bar in the center and move it toward the left edge, like so:
In the content area, add your bio box and any other piece of info that you’d like to have featured in the author box. A finished box can look like this:
You probably don’t want to have to redo this whole box every time you add a new post. To avoid that, we can turn this box into a reusable block. To do that, click on the Add to Reusable Blocks button in the block’s settings:
Give it a name and click on Save. From now on, you can find your author box on the list among all the other blocks.
That’s it! You’ve just learned two methods to add an About the Author box to WordPress.com, better positioning your blog for success.
Photo Source: Unsplash
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