Favicon, Gravatar, IRS tax EIN or SSN for New Blog

new favicon for WordPress via Jetpack
new favicon for WordPress via Jetpack

Today I created a Favicon, a Gravatar, and determined that I do NOT need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS.


I noticed that my Genesis WordPress theme automatically had a ‘G’ on the browser tab above the URL. I at least wanted to remove that, and even better, learn how to make my own little symbol for my new website.

So, I googled the words “remove G from browser tab” or something like that. I landed on How to Add a Favicon to WordPress, at WPBrain, which did explain a handy plugin, and Change the Default Genesis Favicon, a post by Jennifer Baumann at Dream Whisper Designs. Both indicated the need to create a tiny .ico favicon image. I tried the favicon builder links provided in the Dream Whisper post, and though I was able to create a crude favicon, and even pasted the ‘remove favicon’ code provided into my php functions file as instructed, I was still seeing the G and couldn’t figure out where or how to upload a favicon.ico file to my site.

How to make a custom favicon for new website or blogSo, next I found this post from Virendra’s Tech Talk, How to add favicon in WordPress using Jetpack, which clued me in to the fact that Jetpack, already installed on my site, could enable a Site Icon created in any format (PNG, JPG, GIF) as long as it was 512 x 512 pixels. (Thus, the image I had created in the favicon builder was too small and wouldn’t work.)

I used my Photoshop Elements (which I hate, and I mutter with irritation every time I use it, but eventually create what I need) to start with a new image, at the 512×512 size, and added text at 250 pt to make three letters in my three site colors. I saved it as a PNG.

Next, I went to Plugins -> Jetpack, and enabled Site Icon. Once enabled, I went to Settings -> General and found the Site Icon upload button. No cropping needed, just find my new PNG file, upload, push Crop without changing anything from my uploaded image, and voila! So proud!

Here’s an example — now my tiny logo appears on the browser tab for everyone who goes to my website.

Favicon example hertechability
Tiny favicon (can be any image) appears on browser tab.

However, I was still sometimes seeing the ‘G’. If I clicked refresh it would disappear and be replaced by my new favicon, but that ‘G’ was appearing a lot. So, I moved the ‘remove favicon’ code provided in the Dream Whisper post higher up, closer to the top, of my Theme Functions php file for my child theme. It worked! The ‘G’ no longer appears, even for a second.

Here’s the exact code: remove_action(‘wp_head’, ‘genesis_load_favicon’);



I must admit, that in my quest to remove that ‘G’ on the browser tab, I learned the words ‘favicon’ and ‘gravatar’. The little ‘G’ is a favicon, but since I found gravatar articles, I decided to go ahead and create one of those, too. A gravatar is the tiny photo, or any image you select, that gets attached to your email address(es) so that when you comment on anything online on any website, it appears there alongside your comment. You can also enter a profile description of yourself, and link any websites.

Here are articles I found:
From John Saddington’s Ultimate Guide to Launching a WordPress Powered Blog Series, Do You Have a Gravatar? Get One!
From Blog Tyrant, 4 Vital Gravatar Tips to Get Your Comments Clicked & Noticed

I still didn’t know how to get a Gravatar, so I googled the word, and found Gravatar. It was really, really easy to upload a photo and crop it to the right size and link it with my email address. There was a momentary wait while a verification email was sent to my email address and I had to click a link in it to confirm that the email address belonged to me, but all in all, the process was very easy. I even went ahead and created a second gravatar for my personal email address.

Here’s an example — now my tiny picture even appears at the top of my WordPress edit page.

Gravatar image appears anywhere my email address is used. Even on WordPress edit page.
Gravatar image appears anywhere my email address is used. Even on WordPress edit page.



Wanting to plan ahead for Adsense and other ways to monetize my blog in the future, I new I’d need to consider tax filings and business licenses, and be prepared for which ID number to enter in any advertising account setup.

I learned that I DO need a City license ($45), and a State business number (free), but the IRS website states that my new blog, a sole proprietorship, can receive income through my personal social security number, and when I file our joint tax return, the income and expenses for my blog ‘business’ gets inserted. In other words, I do not employ anyone so I do not need an EIN, and I do not need to file a separate tax return. Just what I wanted to hear!

Here are the references I used:

IRS Q&A: Does a small company that operates as a sole proprietorship need a tax ID number? Short answer: NOPE.

US Small Business Administration: Making Money Online: When Are You a Business? Goes over how to determine when you’ve become a business, and the regulations and checklists required by local and federal governments.

ProBlogger: 7 Things That Every Blogger Should Know About Tax Great description of the difference between hobby blogging and business blogging.

City of Seattle: Business Tax Rules Essentially, anyone planning to make money in any way needs a business license in this city. For those making, or anticipating to make, under $20,000, the fee is $45 per year.

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