Pop quiz! What’s the best way to garner more visits to your site from search engines? Answer: Get ranked on the first page of Google. This is common knowledge, however, so you haven’t quite earned your gold star for the day if you answered correctly. The question to really be asking right now is: What else can be done to improve click through rate once we’re already in Google’s top 10? That’s why we will be discussing “rich snippets,” and its impact on SERPS CTR.
Glad you could join us for today’s lesson. First, we’ll start with the basics. What’s a snippet? It’s the listing that appears in the search engine results for a website. Here’s an example of the snippet that appears for everyone’s favorite search engine:
So if you didn’t know before, now you do. That’s a “snippet.” We’re sure you’re all too familiar with these, and if you aren’t quite sure how they work, here’s a nice little video of Google’s Matt Cutts explaining the anatomy of a snippet for you to check out.
Are you back with us? Great. Let me ask you this: Have you ever really stopped to think about how bland the typical search snippet really is? To advertise your website to the billions of users who use Google, all you get is a piddly title/link, URL and description. Oh, you’ll definitely see a boost in organic visits from Google if you’re listed in their top 5 or 10, but wouldn’t it be nice to do a bit more with that space?
Let’s brainstorm for a second. What else could be added to make a snippet attract more attention? How about a photo? Imagery is food for our eyeballs, and you can be sure a potential customer would be much more likely to click on a search snippet for a product if they can actually see what it looks like.
What else might work? Adding product information, or better yet, reviews from customers! I know I’m personally more prone to checking out products on a website like Amazon.com that have five star ratings.
Rich snippets let you add all of the above to your search results if you so choose. It’s just a matter of picking a markup format from these three lovely choices:
Then you mark up your content accordingly. We suggest looking over this very handy guide provided by Google (it comes complete with videos and images). With it, you can create rich snippets for reviews, products, recipes, videos, music and more.
Once you’ve implemented your markups, you can use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to test the result. If you’ve done it correctly, your rich snippet should look something like this:
That’s all for today’s lesson! If you’d like to discuss how rich snippets can be implemented on your website, feel free to leave a comment below or get in touch with a BBEX project manager, and we’ll be happy to discuss your project.