We get a fair number of questions on our support portal such as this:

Why am I an ugly grey silhouette beside my comments, and you have your profile picture beside yours? How do you do that?

The simple, one word answer to this is Gravatar.

What is a Gravatar?

Gravatar stands for Globally Recognised Avatar. It is a service that is deeply integrated into WordPress and allows a photo or image of you to be associated with your email address. So when you make a comment on yours or another website running WordPress, your ‘avatar’ will transform from an ugly grey sillhouette to the image or photo of your choice.

gravatar logo

Why use a Gravatar?

The main benefit of using a Gravatar is that it lifts you out of an anonymous obscurity. The interwebs are getting noisier everyday with people trying to get noticed and have their message heard. Having your brand or an image of you next to comments not only on your site but on other websites, helps you stand out from the crowd. It may even inspire some clicks back to your website by curious readers.

Another obvious benefit of using a Gravatar is that is just looks infinitely more professional. Using a Gravatar raises your profile, makes you look professional and helps people start to (or continue to) recognise you as the authority in your field that you are.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that the question isn’t ‘why use a Gravatar’, but why aren’t you using a Gravatar?

How Do I Get a Gravatar?

Getting yourself a Gravatar is simple, and it’s free. If you head over to the Gravatar website, you just register the email address you wish to use, and upload an image or photo. You can use a photo of yourself, a company brand or logo, or an image that relates to an interest or hobby. My suggestion would be to choose a photo or an image which emphasises the brand or image you are trying to project.

The beauty of Gravatar is that you are not limited to registering just one email address. You can associate multiple email addresses with the same image, or you can have a different image for each email address. So for example you could use a photo of yourself and associate it with a personal email address, and use a company logo with your company email address.

Then, the next time you comment on a WordPress website, Gravatar will automatically send your picture to the website to help make you and your comment stand out.

That’s all there is to it. It’s a small thing, and easy to do, but the payoff is a more professional you!

Want to see it in action? Go set up your own Gravatar and comment below!