Google is experimenting with a new way to help people find you in search results. Limited to India for now, the search engine is rolling out new ‘people cards’ which let individuals highlight details about themselves including your website, social profiles, and other relevant sites in one spot.
Anyone who has ever tried to make a name for themselves knows search engines struggle when it comes to finding individual people – especially if they aren’t a household name like Taylor Swift.
Now, Google is trying to tackle this problem with a virtual business card:
“Today, we are solving these challenges with a new feature called people cards. It’s like a virtual visiting card, where you can highlight your existing website or social profiles you want people to visit, plus other information about yourself that you want others to know.”
The cards were created with entrepreneurs, performers, influencers, and freelancers in mind and allow for a small amount of customization including a short blurb and contact links.
When viewed, the cards initially display a person’s name, profession, and location. When tapped or clicked, it expands into a full card complete with links.
When multiple people with the same name appear in a search result, the individuals will appear alongside each other, allowing you to select the person you are looking for.
How Creating a People Card Works
While they are not available in the U.S. or U.K. yet, some have found workarounds using VPN services to create a People Card for themself. If you decide to do this, you should know the cards will still only appear to searchers within India until the cards are expanded internationally.
If you still wish to create a card and can make the VPN process work (results have been mixed according to Twitter users), the process is relatively simple.
- Make sure you’re signed into the Google account you want linked to your People Card.
- Search for your name or query “add me to Search.”
- After clicking “add me to Search” on the prompt, you’ll be taken to a page where you can provide a range of details including:
- The image from your Google account
- A personal description
- A website link
- Links to social profiles
- Your phone number
- Your email address
While you can pick and choose which details you want to provide, Google says “the more information you provide, the easier it is for people to find you.”
The only exception is your phone number, which is required for authenticating your card. Users can choose to keep this information hidden from their card, however.
How Google Will Vet The Cards
Accompanying the rollout of these cards (and potentially explaining the limited size of the test), Google says it is launching a number of strict quality control measures to ensure the cards are reliable:
“Our goal with Search is to always make sure people can find helpful and reliable information, so we have a variety of protections and controls in place to maintain the quality of information on people cards.”
For now, there is no mention of when People Cards could be arriving in America. Based on the excitement from many, though, it feels safe to say you can expect to see something similar stateside sooner rather than later.