There are many ways to attract users to click on your website, and creating rich snippets is just one of many ways to do this. Take care not to confuse these with featured snippets – they’re actually not the same thing. Both featured snippets and rich snippets stand out more on the search engine results page (SERP), by taking up more space and appearing different to other links. But, while a featured snippet does so with text or lists that are taken from your content, rich snippets are a little more complicated. Read on to find out all you need to know about Google rich snippets.
What are rich snippets?
Rich snippets appear on the SERP and include extra relevant information that a user may want to see. As you can see in the image above, the second link features a rich snippet that displays a rating and an image, which looks much more appealing than its competitor. Reviews, prices, images, and other rich snippets are all helpful for increasing visibility and improving click-through rate (CTR). Although rich snippets are not a ranking factor, users are much more likely to be drawn to your site if it has a rich snippet.
Whilst on the surface this sounds pretty similar to featured snippets, the data for a rich snippet is actually taken from the HTML code of your site. This means that it’s slightly trickier to create rich snippets, as you need to delve into the coding of your page to add structured data markup. We know, this all sounds pretty complicated if you’re a reluctant coder. But fear not, as we’ll walk you through how to create rich snippets below.
How to create rich snippets
1) Define what you want Google to focus on
What information do you want Google to display in your rich snippet? There are many types of rich snippets that all depend on what your page is actually about. For example, a product page may want to display the price, stock availability, and reviews in a rich snippet. These all add relevance to how your site appears on the search page, increasing the likelihood that a customer will click through.
But, what if your content is purely informational? Rich snippets can be effectively used here, too. For example, a page about a new film may want to tag the genre, release date, runtime, and any other specific information that will improve its relevance to a user’s search.
2) Use Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper
Technically, rich snippets can be written directly into the code on your site. But, this is time consuming and pretty difficult if you don’t have much experience. Luckily, Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper is a quick and easy solution for those who don’t want to spend their time struggling with code. The tool helps you add structured data markup to many types of pages by simply selecting a data type and pasting your URL.
3) Create microdata
Once you’ve completed the previous step, Google will take you to a page with your content laid out on the screen. During this step, you can create microdata by adding tags to your page. For example, if you want the author’s name to appear as a rich snippet, then you need to highlight their name within your text. You will then have the option to add a tag to the text – in this case, select ‘Name’. Complete these steps for any data you wish to have featured as a rich snippet in the search results.
4) Use the microdata to create new HTML
Now that you have tagged all the necessary information, click ‘Create HTML’. You’ll see all of the tags you created in a block of HTML. Copy and paste this into your article’s HTML using your content management system of choice. It’s recommended by Google to insert this code into the “head” section of your HTML.
5) Test your rich snippets
Your rich snippet should now be set up and ready for use. To be on the safe side, make sure you test that Google can actually read your markup data. This is straightforward to do using Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool, which lets you know if rich snippets are appearing on Google.
With functioning rich snippets now added to your page’s SEO, be prepared for an increase in traffic to your website. Optimising content for Google is one of our many skills as a digital marketing agency. If you’d like to learn more and speak to a member of the team, get in touch with TAL Agency.
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