Search engine optimization is a marketing discipline that overlaps with web development, thanks to its more complex, technical elements. Following best practices for content, code and user experience will give you an advantage over many competitors. However, some advanced practices provide an edge over even those with a good foundation in place.
Microformats can improve the appeal of your organic listings, and make them more click-worthy. Click-through-rates for your organic listings are important, because they are a factor in rankings — the position at which your website appears in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs).
Let’s talk about how microformats can improve the appeal of your listings, and drive more traffic to your website.
What are microformats?
Microformats are a type of structured markup. In layman’s terms, microformats are bits of code that bookend information on your website, and tell search engines what kind of data it is.
Think of them as “labels” for parts of your content. For example, if your business’ physical address is listed on your website, microformats will tell Google “This is the street address,” “this is the city,” “this is the state,” and “this is the zip code.”
If your website features movie reviews, microdata can tell search engines what is a title, what is a user rating and other useful information.
What is their impact on SEO?
Google can use the information from your microformats to present your SERP listing with what’s called a “rich snippet.” Basically, this means instead of your listing being just your title, URL and description or some random text pulled from the page, it might actually present the recipe. It might show your hours of operation, or your location. If you have an average rating or review score, it might show your star rating.
As you can imagine, a local restaurant with a five-star rating and hours of operation visible in the listing might be more appealing to a searcher than one without those additional pieces of information. Thus, an improved click-through-rate for the listing and better overall SEO.
What businesses can benefit from microformats?
Microformats benefit some businesses more than others. If your website includes articles, reviews, products, locations, hours of operation, or events — you might benefit from applying microformats. A look at the microformats helper from Google will probably give you a good idea of what kinds of websites benefit the most.
If you’re still not sure, that’s okay. We’d be happy to set up a time to talk with you about whether this is something worth trying for your business.
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