Do you often wonder how some commenters have their profile picture displayed even when they are commenting on blogs which is not their own? Have you always wanted to get rid of that mystery man grey image next to your name when commenting on Blogs and Sites. In this post, I will show you how you can set up your own profile picture to be displayed along with your comments on sites.
Gravatar – Globally Recognized Avatar
If you are new to blogosphere, you may not have heard about Gravatar before. Gravatar is a free service from the team behind WordPress and is recognized as one of the best ways to associate a profile picture along with your name and e-mail.
Gravatar is being used by almost all bogs that are powered by WordPress. Even when blogs are not using WordPress or if their commenting system is powered by third party services such as Disqus, they would still often support Gravatar profile pictures.
How to setup Gravatar Profile Picture
If you decided to setup your Gravatar Profile picture then doing so is quite easy and free. Just head over to Gravatar’s Website and signup. Remember to provide the same e-mail address that you use when commenting on Blogs. If you want you can also associate more than one e-mail address with the same profile picture. Setting up your Gravatar profile picture is a one time job and once it is set, your profile picture will start appearing in blogs that support it. Even for comments you made in past will happen to display your picture now.
Gravatar also supports displaying a global profile of yours along with some information such as your websites, social network handles etc. In case you want people to know more about you and visit your blogs, I recommend you setup these information as well on Gravatar. Many blogs have Gravatar hover card enabled, which displays a short summary (as shown in the first image) about you and will present a link to view your complete profile on Gravatar. For e.g. here is the public Gravatar profile of Matt, co-founder of WordPress.
Setting up your own Gravatar profile and picture would mean more readers back to your own site when you leave a comment on other blogs.
How to support Gravatar on your Blog
Most WordPress themes come with support of Gravatar and you should definitely choose the one that supports it, as your visitors would get more reasons to leave a comment. If you are not using WordPress but want to support display of Gravatars for commenters on your blog, you may want to refer to Gravatar’s list of libraries and plugins. You may also consider switching your commenting system to Disqus, which not only supports Gravatar profile images, but also from other social networks such as Twitter, Facebook etc.
Other services using Gravatar Profile picture
Blogs are not the only one using Gravatar profile pictures. Many popular services such as Stack Overflow and GitHub also use Gravatar to display user’s profile picture associated with their e-mail address. So there is a good chance that once you set up your Gravatar, many such sites will start displaying your profile picture without you needing to upload a profile picture on their respective websites.
Say goodbye to mystery man avatars and setup your Gravatar now!