Why You Need One and How to Create One
Okay friends, time to customize your blog’s Gravatar, a terrific FREE tool to use to increase traffic to your blog! Did you read FREE? That’s a good thing, right?
What is a Gravatar?
A gravatar is a picture that appears next to your name when you comment on another blog. Your picture follows you like this if you have tied your logo or profile image to your email in a gravatar.com account. If you want to increase traffic to your blog, it is important that you set up a gravatar. One way to grow your blog traffic is to leave comments on other bloggers’ posts. But to make your comment reveal your blog, you have to have your email address tied to your gravatar.
Here’s how it works: If you comment on another blog using the email you tied to your gravatar, then your comment will carry your gravatar image as well as a direct link to your own blog. Someone interested in your comment or gravatar, might click on it and – ta da! – you have a new visitor to your blog! See my sample comment screenshot below: You see that I (Green Smoothie Gourmet) have a working gravatar, but the commentor above me named Taylor does not, instead of her gravatar, there is a blue circle is a generic filler that certain blogs pop in when a commentor has no gravatar of their own. A grey ghost symbol is another generic one, it depends on the blog’s framework. Either way if your comment carries a generic gravatar, and not your own, then you are losing valuable traffic to your own blog:
Convinced you need a gravatar? Then let’s get to it!
Set Up Your Gravatar
Step 1: Login into Gravatar.com. If you have a WordPress.com account already, you can use that login since the folks who created WordPress.com also created Gravatar.com; if not, please register create an account with Gravatar.com.
Step 2: Within your new panel, click the “My Profile” tab and fill out at least name and details, photo gallery, websites. I personally did not add a background color, verified or currencies.
Here is how I filled out “Name and Details”. As you see, I wanted my blog name to show up, not my personal name, so I set it up accordingly:
I uploaded only a few images to the gallery..
And this step is SO important, I assigned the blog URL that I want my gravatar to be linked to. I want my comments and gravatar to be clickable to GreenSmoothieGourmet.com so that is what I inserted into this page.
Step 3: Once you are done with the profile tab, click on the “My Gravatars” tab and proceed to upload your images and assign the email address. First, add an email address and set it to primary – please use one email address that generally represents your blog well, and that you will always use when you are commenting on blogs or logging into panels that use a gravatar such as image gallery sites like Foodgawker.com or Food52.com, etc. As you see from the image below which represents my own gravatar account panel, I have set my primary email address to be: “firstname.lastname@example.org”.
Step 4: Once you have inserted an email address, next upload an image. This image is your gravatar. Hooray, we finally get to the actual gravatar! Although the gravatar panel solemnly says you can upload any size, don’t listen to them. Size your image square at 180 px by 180 px. (You can use Canva.com or PicMonkey.com if you don’t have image editing software.)
As you see from my panel pictured below, I have actually created two gravatar images – one is my Green Smoothie Gourmet logo, and the other is my profile picture that I also use on Instagram. As you know, profile pictures of a person are considering warmer and friendlier and more likely to get you clicked, so I recommend always using an image of you personally as your primary gravatar. You can also create a logo gravatar and attach it to a less used email address as I have done with my leaf motif, attaching it to “email@example.com” . In those rare instances I want to comment or sign up as a business, I will use the logo, but I haven’t yet – the personal image is always more valuable.
Step 4: Now that you have learned how to create a gravatar and tie it to the email and blog address – let’s see this gravatar in action! I’m off to visit one of my favorite blogs today, heavenlynnhealthy.com. Lynn has created an astonishingly interesting hot chocolate recipe and since it’s getting chilly here on the East Coast, I want to check it out!
And found the hot chocolate recipe listed in her recipes, and I was thrilled to see how interesting it is, so much more than an ordinary hot chocolate recipe, healthy, spicy and so easy to make. I wanted to show her some appreciation for her kind share of this recipe by leaving a comment. And so I did….
Now, normally I would use my primary “firstname.lastname@example.org” email address and thus my personal image of me would show up as my gravatar. For the purposes of this tutorial, however, I wanted to try out my logo gravatar, so for this comment on Lynn’s post, I used my “email@example.com” email address. Because I had attached my leaf logo to that email address, the leaf logo gravatar image is what showed up when I submitted my comment — see it below?
And if you want to check out this comment in person visit her hot chocolate post, scroll down to the comments, find mine and click on the leaf and see if it takes you to my own blog at “greensmoothiegourmet.com”. If it’s not there yet, it means she hasn’t yet approved the comment on her end. Any questions? Follow me on my Instagram and comment on any post, or leave a comment on my blog and let’s see your own gravatar! I hope you enjoyed my tutorial. Take care, Dee xx.