The world of online business has been revolutionizing trade in general for quite some time now. The opportunities it provides for both the business owners and their clients are virtually limitless. At the same time, the progress in the scope of products and services offered is visible on a regular basis. All these changes and improvements have a universal goal, to make the trade as efficient and straightforward as possible.
One of the latest trends that is becoming increasingly favored by users, and thus the owners too, are rich snippets. Search engines favor them and make rich snippets a go-to option for online advertising and keyword ranking. Being a relatively new feature, there is quite an ambiguity on what rich snippets actually are, how they benefit the business owners, and what they should do to get their rich snippets to appear in SERP. Let’s discuss all this in detail.
What are, in fact, rich snippets?
The best definition of a rich snippet is they are those search results that have a more attractive and inviting appeal, something that grabs users’ attention and gives them an additional reason to click on the link and find out more. The adjective rich is quite self-explanatory since these snippets feature additional information related to the featured URL, for example, the price, reviews, address, upcoming activities, and a photo if applicable.
Appearing among top SERP’s means that online business has a superb SEO. However, the ultimate goal of a good search ranking is enticing browsers to click on the link and visit the website, the experts in SEO company in Dubai emphasize. This is where rich snippets provide the most significant advantage. Now, how to make sure they get featured in SERP?
An initial and obligatory step
For a search engine, and we can say Google here since it is by far the most frequently used one, to consider showing a rich snippet, it needs to recognize it in the website data. To make this happen, structured data markup needs to be implemented. Adding structured data or schema in a manner that the search engine algorithm would have no problem recognizing is a complex task that needs to follow a particular vocabulary.
However, adding an appropriate code to a website does not guarantee that Google will automatically feature its rich snippet. And, this might happen out of a dozen reasons. Now, what else needs to be taken into account to maximize the chances for a particular rich snippet to be featured in SERP?
Google supports only certain types of schema markup
Being unaware of the fact that Google does not support all kinds of structured data is the number one reason why business owners get disappointed when they realize that their rich snippet is not featured after schema markup was done on their website. The list of featured markups gets expanded every day, but it does not cover all markups available. Therefore, before going through a structured data markup, website owners should check whether the rich snippets they plan on creating will even qualify to be considered by Google in the first place.
Quality standards and relevance
Google’s search algorithm and ranking system are being continually changed and improved. The factors that are increasingly valued when it comes to keyword ranking are above all quality and relevance of the content. This means that the structured data markup needs to abide by Google quality standards and, at the same time, be undoubtedly relevant to the content of the website. Schema is what is, in fact describing content to the search engine. If structured data is misleading and imprecise, a search engine will not be able to recognize or incorporate it properly.
Not even a minuscule error is allowed
As you probably figured out already, structured data markup is a complex process. There is no room for error in the implementation process in order to improve the chances of a rich snippet being featured by the search engine. Bearing all this in mind, the job should be delegated to the professional.
The best way for structured data markup to be successful is a collaboration between a developer and an SEO expert. The former would naturally be in charge of coding, while the latter would provide a suitable content to be featured, with both tasks being equally important and mutually dependant in increasing the chances of a rich snippet appearing in SERP.
By far, the most common reason for a rich snippet not appearing in SERP is inconsistent coding during structured data markup. Even the most minuscule errors, such as unclosed HTML tags, will prevent Google from understanding the markup.
Another common mistake is the use of a variety of encodings on a single page. For example, RDFa, Microdata, and JSON-LD are all used for schema markup. However, if the two of them are mixed on a single page, the rich snipped would not be displayed correctly. Once again, consistency and precision are needed for the coding part of the schema markup to be successfully completed.
Remember the emphasis that was put on the quality standards and relevance a couple of paragraphs above? The content of the rich snippet is the culmination since it needs to feature precisely what the users are looking for. Suppose it reflects the user’s needs, answers their questions, and offers additional useful information. In that case, the rich snipped will very likely appear in SERP.
Let’s look at the example of a rich snippet for a cherry pie recipe. The one that features the necessary ingredients to make it, the duration and a cost it takes to have it done, user reviews, and the total calories it contains, followed by a nice picture of a final product, has excellent chances of appearing in SERP. Unlike the one that includes only a URL link to the website.
You get the drift. The content has to be relevant and encompassing, often exceeding users’ expectations. Otherwise, all the other steps taken to provide conditions for a rich snippet to be taken into consideration by the search engine algorithm will be in vain.
Rich snippets require time and money invested. However, having one featured in SERP significantly improves the website’s traffic and new customer generation. All in all, an investment that will, if seen through diligently, indeed prove to be worthwhile.