If you’re wondering what the bacon butty has to do with rich snippets… well, nothing. Or everything? If you were to search for the term, the above entry is a top-ranking result. This underscores the power of rich snippets. Note the star rating, review count, minutes to make, and calorie count (not to mention the mouth-watering picture, but images are a post for another day) under the title and URL.These elements, or rich snippets, draw searchers’ attention, increase trust and generate more click-throughs compared to other sites. To make sure that your pages are eligible for rich snippets, you need to add structured data to your content. Find out how, and improve your rankings and CTR.
Structured data allows search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo to index your sites and better understand your content. You add it to your HTML markup, and engines use this data to generate rich snippets, which will appear in search results.
Google currently supports rich snippets for the following content categories:
One of the best ways to add structured data to your website is to use Schema.org. This is a collaborative initiative between search engines Google, Bing, and Yahoo, and it is designed to ‘create and support a common set of schemas for structured data markup.’ In other words, it’s a ‘vocabulary’ or set of tags that webmasters and owners can use to mark up their content and enable rich snippets.
(Another search result that displays rich snippets; note the concise description, reviews, address, and phone.)
Let’s say that we’re the owners of a restaurant, such as the one in the search result above. How would we markup our content? We want to emphasize our many great ratings. To do this, we’d go to the ‘Thing’ category (which includes restaurants) on Schema.org and navigate to ‘AggregateRatings.’ Here’s what we would see:
You enter the relevant information and ‘plug’ it into your code. This is an example from Schema.org of entry without microdata markup:
Now here is the same entry with markup:
Yes, that is a bit of extra work! But the benefit is that the entry in the search results will have rich snippets that attract the attention of your target audience. Using Schema.org, you can input the relevant data (you do not have to fill in every field, don’t worry) to create a rich snippet. The results are more attention-grabbing results that can improve click-through-rates.
Because there is fierce competition for the top spots in the search engine results pages, it pays to take every step possible to ensure that you are at or near the top. Leveraging structured data enables search engines to generate rich snippets – and these act as a magnifying glass for your business or brand.