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Schema Comes To Life
Today’s post is a bit geeky. OK, a lot geeky. Google recently introduced structured snippets in SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). I’ll explain why this is interesting and big news.
A Little History
Schema.org is a collaboration between the major search engines (Google, Bing, Yandex). It’s a collection of schemas (models or outlines) that webmasters use to markup HTML pages. The theory behind schema is to create a unified way of organizing and presenting code… thus making it easier for users to find relevant information on the web. Structured snippets in SERPs is now a very visible way that schemas are becoming mainstream in everyday search.
Research at Google launched structured snippets within SERPs as a way to provide users with a uniform architecture for bits of information. Google’s Research blog announced:
Structured Snippets is the latest collaboration between Google Research and the Web Search team employing that data to seamlessly provide the most relevant information to the user. We use machine learning techniques to distinguish data tables on the Web from uninteresting tables… We also have additional algorithms to determine quality and relevance that we use tot display up to four highly ranked facts from those data tables.
Translation: the algorithm now presents other information to human searchers they think will enhance their search experience. Looking at a photo? Structured Snippets will show resolution and display size.
Structured Snippets is a way to present data that in fact helps a searcher find what they need faster and easier. The danger with any new feature is abuse. We’ve seen this cycle over and over, where unscrupulous SEOs try to manipulate search algorithms to eek out undeserved rankings.
Our advice? Ask if the White Hat SEO technique is meant to improve/enhance your potential audiences’ experience. If the answer is yes, then continue. If not, rethink your strategy.
What do you think of Structured Snippets? Technical hooey or exciting times?
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