Rich snippets and schema are two pieces that lead to, among other things, a better user experience. If this hasn’t been a cornerstone of your web work previously, then it’s never too late to start. By using these tools, you can create a better digital experience than ever for your clients or customers…and who doesn’t want that? First, though, it’s important to understand how schema began, and where it is now.
How Did All This Start?
We’ve discussed schema – and rich snippets – from time to time, but the history of schema is important to know, too, so you can best use it to plan for your future web endeavors. Tim Berners-Lee (the father of the World Wide Web) is quoted as saying that “We should work toward a universal linked information system, in which generality and portability are more important than fancy graphics techniques and complex extra facilities.” In short, tools like schema are essential toward the dream for the internet that Berners-Lee had from the beginning!
Of course, to start a conversation about schema, we also should return to what it (and rich snippets) is. Schema is a powerful optimization tool that “you put on your website to help the search engines return more informative results for users.” Rich snippets, then, are “a result Google shows to the user in the search results.” Think of when you perform a search and see that little text box right there in search results. It might include a rating, an image, and even ingredients and/or time required, if it’s something like a recipe.
The Website That Changed Schema Forever
So, with all that in mind, how have rich snippets and schema become ultra-relevant today? 2011’s introduction of Schema.org allowed for “a common vocabulary shared across search engines” where one didn’t previously exist. With this, there could be the linking of data in the way that Berners-Lee envisioned. There have seen been developments in the types of these different schema, so there’s more flexibility in it than ever.
In 2013, “actions” were added, which provided more than simple information by introducing the ability to…well, take action. If you’re searching for a restaurant, for example, then you could now click a button from the schema that would allow you to make a reservation right then and there.
Whats Being Done Today?
What’s in store for the future of schema? “Google is strategically focused on expanding support and features for Schema markup, as it helps them to better understand the web — which in turn helps them to deliver better services, voice results, ads, et cetera.” Fortunately, it seems like the search engine giant is still focusing heavily on how best to get you the results you need.
One of the best (and easiest) ways to make sure you’re setting up your website and its content for proper schema is to utilize the Yoast SEO plugin. Yoast “builds a full structured data graph for every post or page on your site,” which is obviously a HUGE benefit to you…and a time-saver, too!
Get Schema Help From Local Marketing Experts
This may be the first you’re hearing about schema and/or rich snippets, but don’t leave it at that! There are a number of tools, like the Yoast plugin mentioned above, that can help to get your website in shape for presenting its information in the best way possible to search engines. If you need help making these changes and getting things properly configured for optimal schema setup, then get in touch with Eyler Creative today!