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Add An Author Box Easily With WP Biographia

Posted on by in Blog

Inspired by WP About Author, WP Biographia is a fantastic free WordPress plugin that lets you insert an author box easily into your front page, posts, pages, archives and your RSS feeds.

The plugin inserts the author box automatically therefore you don’t have to do any template edits. All you need to do is select what areas of your site you want bios to be displayed. Everything is controlled from the WP Biographia settings area.

You can set the background colour of your author box and the border style. You can also set what social media profiles are displayed and whether a link is added to the authors older posts.

WP Biographia

Previously, the author box on WP Mods was hard coded into the single.php page template. The old author bio area was basic but did exactly what I needed.

Old Author Bio

The author box that WP Biographia inserts is a marked improvement over my previous one. The example below shows the author area with a thick top border.

New Author Bio

You can also set the box to have a thin border round the whole box rather than having just a border at the top.

Thin Border

Alternatively, you can remove the border altogether.

No Border

I really wasn’t looking for an author plugin to control the author bios on WP Mods as I am trying to keep the number of queries here low (more plugins = more calls to the database). There are 3 reasons why I decided to use this plugin instead of hard coding it:

  1. The author box styling was better than what I had previously (granted, I could have some time simply modifying the old box).
  2. The plugin adds social media fields to user profiles and then inserts them automatically into the author box. I was looking for a good way of displaying authors social media profiles so this was a big plus for me.
  3. You can add the author box to RSS feeds.

For me, adding the author box to RSS feeds is a fantastic feature. I’ve written a lot of guest posts on the web though one thing that frustrates me is that when an author box is used instead of a small bio at the end of the post, there is no link back to my website(s) in the RSS feed (for the record, I prefer author bios being used instead the blog owner posting the article themselves as most people don’t even realise you wrote the article!).

A large percentage of subscribers read directly via their RSS reader therefore 99% of the time and when an author bio is used on a website for guest authors, they don’t get any credit for their contribution. On my old website Blogging Tips I used to manually edit the core files so that a link to an authors website and profile was included in the RSS feed, though this became a real pain as it meant manually editing core files every time I upgraded WordPress.

The author box inserted into the RSS feed isn’t styled like the box on your website however it does include links to all the authors website, social media profiles and their author profile. HTML links within the authors bio at included too.

Author Bio In RSS Feed

As you will have established by now, I think WP Biographia is a great little plugin. Being able to insert the author box directly into an RSS feed will benefit anyone who runs a multi-author blog or website (or those who accept guest posts regularly). The plugin also adds new social media profile fields to users profile and displays them in the author box automatically.

I encourage you to try it out yourselves and see what the plugin can do.

Thanks,
Kevin
Link: Download WP Biographia | Information

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Comments (7)

Comment by Gary Gale says:

Thanks for the nice write up of WP Biographia. Version 3.3 of the plugin was recently released and includes a lot of new features designed to support multi author sites and sites with guest authors. It also allows you to specify where you want the Biography Box to appear (on top of a post or underneath), what types of post the Biography Box should appear on (front page, posts, pages, archives, etc) and includes comprehensive shortcode and template tag support if you really need finer grained control. It even validates all your social media contact links and nudges you if they look wrong, so a Twitter profile URL of @vicchi (my Twitter ID) will be nudged to tell me to enter the URL as http://twitter.com/vicchi. Take a look if you get a spare moment.

Comment by Talha says:

Thank you for this, I was looking for a suitable plugin for author profiles, and this seems like a perfect fit.

Comment by Kevin Muldoon says:

It seems to be working fine on WP Mods (see above). All I did was enter the full URL in my profile field e.g. http://twitter.com/wpmods

Did you only enter the username e.g. wpmods

Comment by David M. Kasprzak says:

Hi, Kevin

I came across this plug in, and love it. I’m no code writer, however, and I’m having a problem with linking to an author’s twitter account. While every other link is fine, the URL that results on the twitter link simply tries to append the twitter handle to the end of the current page’s URL.

example: my twitter handle is @FlexiblePencil, and the resulting link is: http://myflexiblepencil.com/2011/08/08/how-much-did-you-make-at-your-last-job/FlexiblePencil

Any ideas on why this would be occuring, and only on the twitter link? Thanks!

Comment by Kevin Muldoon says:

I agree Jay. When I get time I would like to reproduce the plugin by borrowing code from the plugin core. It’s a great plugin though, particularly for allowing you to add author boxes to RSS feeds.

Comment by Jay Andrew Allen says:

Yeah, this is definitely something that can easily be hacked into a template. Adding plugins for something this simple just bogs down your site’s performance. Nice idea, though.

Comment by George Serradinho says:

Well, the plugin will surely help the newbies to WP. The options available to the user to select are awesome, just a few clicks and it’s done.

BTW, I have used a function to create the author bio as it lowers the count of plugins I have installed on my blog.

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