Have you ever wondered why some people have a cute photo next to their name when they comment on websites?
In some cases, it’s really a photograph of them, while in other cases it’s just a clipart, known as an Avatar.
In some cases, moreover, the image that appears could be the icon of a person on a gray wall “the mysterious man”.
Whatever the case may be, these icons “follow” users on the websites they visit, comment on or manage.
The icons to which I refer are called Gravatar and the good news is that anyone with an email address can create one for free.
Today I will explain the benefits of having a Gravatar and how to have one.
What is a Gravatar and why you should have one.
Before Gravatars were created, internet users used avatars to identify themselves in forums and other websites. Usually, you had to register on each site if you wanted a unique avatar associated with your name. But not all websites allowed registration so it was rather difficult to identify users who had made an effort to post a comment.
That’s why Gravatars were created.
Gravatar means Globally Recognized Avatar and is used to associate your email address with your unique photo. In short, it’s the same as an avatar. The difference is that Gravatar is located on a single server and uses the use of emails on associated websites.
The best part of Gravatar is that you can only use one image and this makes it very easy for people to recognize you, regardless of the site you are on. The chosen image will appear on all websites that support Gravatar regardless of whether you want to comment on a blog, forum or otherwise.
Remember that you can choose only one image per email address, you could also choose the same image, also for other email addresses. There is no limit of email addresses or photos, which you can associate with your Gravatar account. If at a certain point you change the image, the change will take place in all the sites where you use Gravatar.
Why should i use Gravatar?
A Gravatar is very simple to set up and it’s also free. Other than that, there are a couple of reasons why you should set one up and use it for your online identity.
- You can use the same Gravatar on every site you actively participate in.
- You can easily change your Gravatar once.
- It helps you build authority on different platforms and helps you establish a personal brand. If you decide to use the Gravatar photo on different social media like Twitter, Facebook and Google+, people will start to recognize you more easily and if they recognize you, they will be more inclined to follow you, and this will help you increase the crowd of followers.
- It can drive traffic to your website. It is not unusual for people to click on your username after you leave a comment on a blog. If you use an image that proves that you are a real person, people will be more likely to see what else you have to offer on your site. Using Gravatar makes it easy for you to identify yourself, showing who’s behind the name.
Now that we’ve talked about the why of Gravatar, let’s move on to how it is set up.
Here’s how to set up Gravatar.
1. Sign up for an account.
To sign up for Gravatar go to their website. Click on the sign up button and on the next screen, you will see a notification telling you that you need to sign up with a WordPress.com account.
If you already use WordPress.com, all you have to do is write down the username and password you use to log in.
If you have never created an account for the version of WordPress.com, click on the “create an account”. Write your email address, the username you want and then click on subscribe.
You will receive an email containing a link to verify your email address. After all this you can go back to Gravatar and sign up. Write the email you used for the WordPress.com account, then the password and you will be inside your Gravatar account.
2. Manage Gravatars.
The next step is to add the image that will accompany your email account, defining your online identity. Click on “add a photo”.
In the next screen, you have to choose an image from your computer, from the internet, from the webcam or maybe use one of those already loaded. Choose where to upload the image by clicking on “next”.
Right now, you need to crop your image and choose its size. Remember that most websites don’t accept Gravatars rated R or X, so be careful.
Once finished, your email will be associated with the image you uploaded. From now on, you can add more email addresses or upload more images.
There is just one more additional step we need to do, we need to complete your Gravatar profile.
3. Create a Gravatar profile.
Whenever someone clicks on your Gravatar, they will be able to get brief information about you and click to find out more. It is a practical way to show links to your profiles and a short biography.
You can add links to your site and connect your Gravatar account with additional services such as Blogger, FourSquare, Twitter, Facebook and others. If you are looking to grow traffic on your site or are looking to grow your business, this is the ideal way to put all the information in one place so that people can easily follow you.