Search engines are constantly seeking new ways to improve the user experience. They want to make it easier for all of us to find exactly what they are looking for. Enter ‘Rich Snippets’ or structured data. This update, introduced in 2009, includes information such as image and text in different combinations.
So what are they exactly? Rich snippets are a type of on-page markup; the extra bits of text that appear below your search results. They add additional context to the search results, thereby presenting them in a more organized fashion.
WHAT KIND OF CONTENT SHOULD YOU APPLY RICH SNIPPETS TO?
You can use Rich Snippets for any of the below pages on your website:
Products: You can showcase the price, rating and availability. If it’s a product review page, using rich snippets (structured data) to add a rating bar can help improve how it appears in the search results.
Businesses: This type of snippet can showcase the type of organization this page is about, as well as its location and logo.
Recipes: When structured data is implemented for a recipe listing, search engines will grab the recipe steps and list them in the search results. This improves the page’s likelihood of being clicked. Include the reviews, the cooking time and the ingredients in such rich snippets.
News and articles: This listing shows when the article was first published, along with the article image found on the page.
Events: For events, details can be listed in search results, including where the event is taking place, what time it starts, who the organizer of the event, as well as any other information that a user needs.
Video content: This type of snippet applies to videos on your webpage, with information about the production company, the owner and the video duration.
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT TO HAPPEN AFTER APPLYING THE RICH SNIPPETS
Just because you’ve added rich snippets doesn’t mean that it will be recognized immediately. Below we list the different stages your content will go through to get recognized:
- First, Google will analyze the structured data markup on the website before starting to display it in the search results. This occurs about 2 weeks after it’s introduced
- If the markups are working fine as per Google’s guidelines, rich snippets will start to appear for some pages in the search results. They will disappear again after a couple of days (so don’t panic!)
- After several days, the rich snippets will re-appear again for the same pages or different sets of pages
- After approximately 2 months, the website will be rewarded with semi-permanent rich snippets. However, they will continue to remain under assessment to ensure it works without any errors
WHY ARE RICH SNIPPETS IMPORTANT FOR MY BUSINESS?
Rich Snippets can take different shapes and formats. They include more information about the content of a certain page that users will be able to view in the search results, giving the result’s page owner a competitive advantage. It’s one of the few ways to make your content stand out on search engine results pages (or SERPs). Many companies have seen a 20-30% increase in click-through rates after implementing snippets.
In the battle to dominate search, making constant improvements to your site, could make or break your brand’s online visibility. Therefore, it’s critical that you keep up with all the latest updates and ensure your website remains compliant. Should you need additional support to get there, get in touch with us.