What are Rich Snippets and How to Use Them?
When you search on Google, you have certainly discovered conspicuous results that are out of the ordinary more than once – such as star ratings, links, images, or price information. This is possible thanks to rich snippets, which we take a closer look at in this article and which help us to position our website better.
Technically, rich snippets are segments of HTML code with content that expresses their function within the website. They are used by systems that interpret the content of web pages, such as search engines. In this way, they can better understand and categorize it correctly. Rich snippets have been around for a long time. Even if you’ve never heard of them specifically, chances are you’ve encountered them every time you search.
For example, below you can see search results:
The “site links” displayed here lead to the various product categories. The site links offer added value for the user as well as a faster route to the preferred product. In addition, the result is visually enriched in this way, making it more attractive for the user and taking up more space on the search result page.
You can also use a rich snippet to catalog different parts of a website’s content, e.g., the content author, companies, books, videos, events, or contacts.
Other well-known examples are:
Recipes Structured Data:
A special type of structured data that applies only to recipes. The recipe labeling includes data such as the preparation time for the dish, ratings, and recipe images.
Organization Structured Data:
Helps Google understand important information about an organization (like a business), including address, logo, and contact information.
These display a star rating (up to 5 stars) and can present an individual rating or an overall rating from users.
Provides search engines with information about a specific product (including price and product images).
At schema.org you will find various classified rich snippets that you can use. The good thing is that classification is supported by entities like Google, Bing, and Facebook. So, if you use their recommendations, you can be sure that Google and other search engines will take them into account.
Why rich snippets are important for your website:
A website that contains rich snippets helps the search engine understand your HTML documents and explains what function certain parts of their content have. As we know, any initiative that helps to better understand a website is viewed favorably by Google, so using it will benefit the ranking.
As mentioned before, a Google search result gets more attention when it contains rich snippets. This gives your website a better chance of standing out from other search results, regardless of its position. Although using a rich snippet is no guarantee that Google will show them and position the page better, in practice, it is known that the ranking algorithm takes rich snippets into account when sorting its results.
How to Use Rich Snippets
Using a rich snippet is an easy task as each is just a few lines of code to paste into the page content. There are several ways to achieve this:
JSON LD. A script in the head or body that specifies the data to be cataloged as rich snippets using a JSON object.
microdata. A set of new attributes in the tags that allow the search engine to understand what content they are presenting.
RDFa. An extension of HTML5 that also allows new attributes to display the information.
Google recommends JSON-LD but warns that the information specified in JSON must later be rendered in the visible part of the HTML content that the user sees when visiting the page.
Rich snippets play a very important role in the website’s Click Through Rate (CTR) and are an essential factor in the evaluation as well as the ranking of websites in the search results. So, if you haven’t implemented these yet, now is the time to do so!