What is a gravatar, you wonder? It means “globally recognized avatar”. The word root is Avatar, kind of like the avatars your kids choose for themselves while playing video games. I’m waaaay too outside of that world to do a real comparison of the two, despite having 2 teenage boys! Avatar was actually originally a Hindu religious term, referring to the material manifestation of a deity on earth, but in the online world gravatars are photos that we choose to represent ourselves online. And yes, that means your gravatar could be a cat, or a daisy, or a photo of you at age 2. Or…your new gravatar account can use a current friendly, professional photo (this is obviously recommended over the choice of a cat if you’re looking to build your personal brand!)
When do gravatars (globally recognized avatars) show up online?
- When you post a new blog post, your gravatar & description will show up at the bottom of your post as an author profile (if your site is set up to use that feature!)
2. When you comment on someone else’s blog post, if you use the email linked to your gravatar your gravatar account will make your chosen photo will show up next to that comment.
Here’s an example of what your gravatar account photo & author profile will look like at the bottom of those blog posts>
Why create a gravatar account?
Your gravatar photo and author profile are a great way to build your relationship with readers, making it clear that you are the one providing them with such great information or thought-provoking articles, and inviting them to take the next step in getting to know you. It serves as a supplement to your “about me” page, introducing readers to you on each and every blog post. That way, even if they find you for the first time via a blog post, they can start getting to know you right away!
Most importantly your gravatar image is a simple & FREE way to quickly up your professionalism profile online!
NOTE: The globally recognized avatar (gravatar) tutorial below is specifically for WordPress users. Not on WordPress? This is still important. If you want your photo to show up when you comment on other people’s sites, then you do need to create a gravatar using the steps below, irregardless of your website platform!
- Go to https://en.gravatar.com and click on the Create a Gravatar blue button
- It will go to a login page where you can login using your WordPress.com login info. If you don’t have a WP.com login, create one. Then click activate account in the confirmation email they will send you.
- Go back to https://en.gravatar.com. If you use the login link in your email you will end up in wordpress.com and it will direct you to build a site. Don’t go there!
- You are now logged into the gravatar site. It will give you the option to upload an image to represent yourself. Note that this could be a photo of yourself OR your log image.
- It will give you the choice to use the email you used when you set up the account, or to add a different one. You will need to select your primary email to link the image below to.
- Your image upload needs to be < 1 MB as you will see in my video tutorial below in which I make that very mistake! The system will give you the option to crop your image to the correct dimensions if needed to fit into the gravatar structure.
- Approve your chosen image & you’re good to go! You can then add your profile text into the settings on your website dashboard. If you are on WordPress, that is under the “users” section in your dashboard! (Just make sure you are using the same email for your site user profile & your gravatar so they can match up!)
How to use your gravatar on squarespace and wix:
If you’re on squarespace, follow these instructions instead.
Using weebly, learn how to create your own gravatar within their platform.
If you’re on WIX, click here.