Snippet is a small information block that appears in search results and allows users to learn more about your company or product before they visit your website
Thoroughly made snippet allows to increase the level of trust to your company and its products and increases traffic. However, one shall know some rules to ensure this element is truly informative and attractive for potential customers.
Please note that you can’t create or set up a snippet manually, as it is created automatically. At that, its design depends on a number of factors that you can affect. The first method is to properly design the page that your snippet is linked to. The second one is to use microdata.
Affecting the snippet using page settings and content.
Snippet structure includes primary body (title, navigation bar, description) and add-ons, such as pricing information, company’s operating hours and contacts.
Title of the snippet also serves as a link to the relevant page of your website. In fact, it’s the page title that is determined by the search engine as the snippet title.
Therefore, naming your page properly is essential to have the efficient snippet title. It is important to follow these rules:
- Title text must be unique.
- It shall contain keywords that reflect on the essence of the page content. For example, it might include a name of a particular product or service. This being said, one shall avoid “overspamming” (extensive use of keywords).
- Title length shall not exceed 65 characters (for Google), including spaces. Otherwise, the entire text will simply not fit.
Navigation bar located under the snippet title contains links to those pages of your company’s website that are relevant to this particular offer. This allows users to go directly to the website section they need from the information block.
Those willing to create a navigation bar must make sure that:
- The website has clear and consistent tree-type structure.
- Page addresses shall be in form of humanly readable URLs.
- Title and URL text shall be similar and contain the name of the page/subsection/section. This information is used to create the relative page titles in the bar.
If you work with Google, you can use the “breadcrumbs” navigation tool on your website in order to create a navigation bar. They can be created using such tools as Microdata or RDF. Shortly one will be able to use Schema.org for this purpose.
This block shall contain information that encourages potential customers to go to your website to place an order or to continue working with your company and it’s products or services. Essentially, main body shall include a savvy business proposal that explains what you do and why your company shall be chosen over others.
Search engines derive this block either from Description, or directly from the page the snippet is linked to. It shall be noted, if your Description or page content is not optimized, it might display irrelevant information from footer, contacts, etc.
Google allows text size up to 140 characters including spaces.
Therefore, in order to display proper information in the main text, you shall:
- Write a quality business proposal that doesn’t exceed 140 characters including spaces.
- Make sure that the key word properly occurs in this text, in which case it will be highlighted in search results.
- Put your text inside the Description meta tag. Note that the Description text shall not repeat the Title.
<meta name="description" content="Why good workmanship snippet enhances the credibility of the company and its products, and also allows you to get good traffic? Read more in the blog!">
- Place your business proposal in the beginning of the page content (including by placing it higher in the page source code).
Additional information makes your snippet even more informative and increases users’ trust level towards your company. Therefore, it increases traffic and conversion by multifold.
Publishing your company’s address and phone number in the snippet makes it significantly easier for users to contact your company representatives. Therefore, the company receives an opportunity to utilize the most efficient leverage on potential clients via call-center managers in addition to interactive advertising, motivating them to cooperation, purchasing or ordering the service.
- To place contacts in the snippet you shall add your company to the Google Maps service.
- Add your company to the service Google Business and confirm registration.
Price and delivery
These are details that users are always interested in. It is especially important to publish such information if you really have something to impress your clients with.
You can use Schema.org microdata to specify prices in the snippet, which is supported by both search engines (use schemes Product, Offer, AggregateOffer).
They allow users to go to relevant section of your website directly from the search results page. For example, they can go directly to product catalogue, reviews, and company history.
This add-on is not available for all websites.
There are three types of graphic elements that can be used in a snippet: favicon, image and video preview. Without using microdata, you can only add favicon, which is a small icon displayed on the tab of the browser, where the website is open. It is also displayed in the snippet next to the title.
You can either draw favicon manually or process another image using special software. Given its tiny size, this icon has very few details, therefore you shall choose the simplest image possible, such as your company’s logo, for instance.
You can create favicon using the favicon.ru website, for example, and then upload the .ico file into your website’s root directory.
Editing snippet using microdata
When usual website design and setup tools are not sufficient to create a proper snippet, one may turn to using microdata. It was implemented by Google with support of Yahoo! and Bing in 2011 by introducing the Schema.org standard.
Microdata is based on using special HTML tags that help make your entire web source and each page thereof fully comprehendible by search engines. This in turn directly improves relevance of search results and overall search quality.
Webmasters will certainly see the true value of the fact that there’s no need to create numerous files customized for various search engines, when using Schema.org. Since all search engines are comparable with this standard, they can analyze site content and retrieve conceptual blocks marked with special tags and attributes from it.
Microdata provides you with a great opportunity to make your snippet as informative and attractive as possible, this increasing its traffic and conversion ratios.
Schema.org standard allows to publish information about product prices, its rating, availability of user reviews, etc. inside the snippet block along with main description. In order to do so, one shall use Schema.org to add information from relevant website pages to the snippet.
Schemes “Product”, “Offer”, and “AggregateOffer” are used to create product snippets.
For example, let’s take a look at the snippet on selling Iphone 6 at the Euroset online shop, which uses the following rules for coding the page’s HTML:
- Use the “itemscope” attribute to point out the description of a specific object to the search robot. The “itemtype” attribute is in turn names the object type. In our case, it’s the “product”.
- Object properties (in our example, it’s the “name” are specified using the “itemprop” attribute.
- It is also quite appropriate to activate such object property as the “description”, which can feature key information about the product
- To display the product price in the snippet, the following code shall be activated:
- Object type that shows product rating (based on customer reviews) can be displayed by using the following code:
As a result, we have a great exemplary snippet that will certainly gain attention of potential customers, which only required moderate coding.
All information on syntax requirements in the Schema.org standard and examples of writing the code can be found on the Schema.org website.
Using semantic microdata (schemes “Organization” and “Place”) you can submit your company’s contact details and business hours to Google.Knowledge Graph. This information will also be included in the snippet.
When working with Google you can also add your company’s logo or any other graphic element to the right of search results.
Where else can Schema.org be used
The Schema.org standard is not limited to being used by companies that sell some products and services. Informative and attractive snippet extensions provided by capabilities of this standard are actively used by:
- Information websites and blogs (there is even a special set of plug-ins for Wordpress to automatically include microdata elements in the page’s source code).
- News portals
- Online encyclopedias and dictionaries.
- Web sources that contain catalogs of films, books, music, research papers, etc.
- Video hosting services.
- Culinary websites.
- Event guides.
- Websites dedicated to mobile and online applications, games, etc.
This is only a short list of Schema.org capabilities. The standard is constantly improved and supplemented with new classes to describe virtually all objects and their characteristics, thus forcing the search engines themselves to improve in that direction. Nowadays they recognize significantly more microdata than back in 2011.