Rich Snippets are one of the ones that has been giving the most talk in recent months.
The field of SEO encompasses a wide range of disciplines and actions that we carry out with one objective: to increase the capture of quality organic traffic on a website by improving its positioning.
Among all the aspects that we can work within an SEO strategy, on and off-page, there are some with greater and others with less impact on the ranking of positions on a website. Rich Snippets are one of the ones that have been giving the most talk in recent months (despite the fact that Google announced its introduction to SERPs more than 10 years ago). Since they have evolved over time and Google periodically introduces new features, we will answer questions related to enriched fragments, and analyze the current status of rich snippets, defining what they are, their influence on positioning, what types we can use on our website, etc.
What Are Rich Snippets or Rich Results?
By default, when we do a Google search, each of the organic results (leaving out ads and Local pack results) is made up of a title, a URL, and a description. For many years, this was the standard aspect of the results for most pages present in Google SERPs.
For some time now, Google began to show more elements associated with snippets on websites, such as a featured image, the publication date, or the price of a product. This means Google “enriched” the visual aspect of the search results, and named these improvements as rich snippets, or enriched results.
As we mentioned above, the variety of improvements made to snippets has been increasing over the years, with some available for any type of page and others specific to some content.
But where does Google extract the information to generate these rich snippets? To answer this question, we must first explain what schema is.
What Is Schema and How Does It Relate to Google’s Rich Snippets?
Schema is a collaborative project that aims to create a standard in data marking that allows better categorization of the information available on the Internet. To do this, it defines entities that represent elements of the real world and their relationships between them.
One of the main purposes of this initiative is to provide search engines with a better understanding of web content. Since schema data markup specifies which element or elements we are defining on a web page, Google, Bing and other search engines’ tracking bots will be able to understand and classify this information more easily. And, in the case of Google, use it to generate rich snippets.
For example, if we have a business with several branches in different locations, it is common for us to have a page on our website to list these subsidiaries. If, in addition, we include data marking with schema to this page, we will be able to explain the data of each branch (location, contact information, etc.) and its relationship with the main brand.
It should be noted that Google only uses a small part of the schema specification for its rich snippets. So not all the marking of data with schema of a website will result in a rich result in Google.
What Benefits Do Rich Snippets Bring to a Website?
In general, rich snippets provide a visual improvement compared to the traditional result of SERPs. In many cases, allowing us to stand out from other competition results.
In this sense, a rich result should be more attractive to users compared to other normal results and cause an increase in our organic search CTR. The reality is that it will depend on each case.
Consider, for example, the introduction of structured data for product sheets of e-commerce. In these cases, Google can choose to directly display its price or rating in the rich result. If the former does not match user expectations or the latter is negative, the presence of this information on the results page may cause rejection.
On the other hand, beyond the visual improvement of the snippet, incorporating structured data on a website will allow us, as mentioned above, to facilitate the task of classifying information for search engines.
Do Rich Snippets Improve SEO?
As in many aspects linked to SEO, the answer to this question will depend. On the one hand, improving the visual aspect of our result in SERPs can translate into an increase in CTR. In practice, this means that with the same number of organic impressions, we will get more clicks, increasing SEO traffic to our website.
On the other hand, Google has not specified that the presence of the Schema markup is a positioning signal.
Types of Rich Snippets That Google Allows
Leaving aside SERP elements that do not directly depend on the presence of data markup with schema on our website (for example, result 0), we can classify the rich snippets allowed by Google into two types:
- Linked to the business and the entire web.
- Specific contents.
The first ones refer to the possibility of specifying through data marking aspects such as information about our company (logo, social profiles, contact actions…), breadcrumbs for all the pages of the site or the internal search engine.
The latter are those that describe specific content on each page of our website, providing additional information in the SERPs. The list of those currently accepted by Google is as follows:
- Local company
- Multimedia actions
- Critic Reviews
- Data verification
- Live broadcast
- Local business
- Question pages (eg forums)
- Paid content
- How to
The list has been growing over time. You can check the official Google documentation here.
Rich snippets are a very attractive functionality for most websites that have organic traffic as a source of attracting visitors. If you have questions about them or need help to incorporate them into your website, do not hesitate to contact us.