Proper microformats are vital. Search engines give preference only to accurate microformats. Clearly, the better your website pages are formatted, the higher position your website gets.
Let’s have a look at the principal microformat schemes for Google, Bing and Yandex and find out how to use them to perfect a search position.
Microformats for Google
Google highlights 5 main groups of microformat schemes:
- Structure – to easily navigate a website;
- Authority – to show corporate contact information, logos, icons with links to social networks;
- Content – to format articles, music, videos, reviews;
- Sales – to present information about local companies, events and products;
- Science – to format studies
Let’s take a closer look at them.
Search hierarchy can be complicated. This scheme is a navigation aid for users. It helps you to understand what will come next after clicking a link. And for Google, it is easier to categorize the content. For example:
An integrated search function saves time. You don’t have to open a new tab or window – just locate the search bar and inquire. What is good for Google makes your life a bit easier. Have a look at the following integrated search lines:
It’s almost too obvious: Use a scheme to make your website’s name appear in the SERP. Just make sure that the name is unique and coincides with the domain name. For example:
Contact information appears when you search by the name of a company. Google’s side panel displays all the contact info on the right (as shown below).
Add your company logo to the Google Knowledge Graph and it will show to the right of your website name:
Social Network Icons
Use microformatting if you want icons (with links to your accounts) to be displayed. Google supports the following social networks:
Utility scheme combined with AMP allows you to add a heading, image, description and date to your article. This variation:
is much more noticeable than this one:
Educational Programs and Courses
This function is indispensable for universities and colleges because it lists all programs and courses right on the search page. It is even possible to add an educational institution with its course names with short descriptions. For instance:
Keep in mind, you can only place existing educational programs, not advertisements, sales or fees.
Schemes ease music, album and singer searches. Results are available on the main page or in the Knowledge Graph. Then you can just toggle between pages and read singers’ biographies, listen to songs or watch video clips. How about, Guns & Roses?:
Excellent for chefs, searchers can view pictures of a freshly made meal, ingredient lists, ratings, cook time, calorie count etc. For example:
Reviews and Ratings
Google encourages the idea of leaving reviews and giving ratings for various companies, products, services, films and other content.
There exist two types of reviews:
- left by users
- left by critics
Knowledge Graph has both of them. This is what information for Kill Bill looks like:
Films and TV-Series
Like music, this is a fast and easy way to find information about films, TV series, or actors. Results show pics, descriptions, ratings, reviews, and links.
Perfect for cinemaholics, lists with episodes can be seen after switching from the Knowledge Graph:
This scheme is used to format YouTube videos and other video services. You can add descriptions, links, download date and duration. Google displays these videos in the carousel and place them the top for AMP.
This is what the carousel for Last Week Tonight with John Oliver looks like after switching from the Knowledge Graph:
When searching for companies on Google Maps, search results return an informative Knowledge Graph card that contains:
- Brief description
- Working days and hours
- Actions (to order food, to reserve a table, to download a file)
- Menu (for cafes and restaurants)
- Names of the different subdivisions and departments
And a company card is represented as:
Microformatting helps Google to find pages (with concerts/conferences/presentations/speeches) according to relevant queries. This is how David Guetta’s sets are displayed:
If you own a marketplace or have an e-commerce business, this is how your products (as well as prices, ratings, availability, reviews etc.) can be displayed:
Google collects datasets and scientific domains in certain repositories. These repositories are dedicated to different scientific spheres, so that scientists and researchers can find valuable information. Unfortunately, lots of these databases are hidden from indexation. If you have scientific data to share, tell Google and fill out this form.
Microformats for Bing
Bing has been supporting microformats since 2011.
Nowadays, it has 6 of them:
- hReview Aggregate
This format is easy-to-use. Utilize it if you need good-looking search results for companies, places, celebrities, events etc. The hCard consists of:
- Given name, family name, name
- Zip code
- Prefixes (Mr., Ms., Mrs., Miss)
Have a look at the Madison Square Garden (NY) page (deep linking used):
hReview / hReview Aggregate
This specification is used to format reviews about companies, products, services etc. Thus we see ratings and how many reviews have been posted.
hProduct is used to insert additional product characteristics in HTML, XHTML, Atom, RSS, and XML (name, brand, photo, price, description, link, category, availability, reviews and rating). For example:
This microformat function is ideal to tell the world about events. It is not used as frequently as hProduct, but still, you can share details such as: event name, brief description, date and place:
This standard is dedicated to recipes for cooking. For example:
This article considers the main microformat schemes and microformats for Google, Bing and Yandex. Although this article is only an introduction, we hope that you will pay more attention to these resources in future. For more info, see the following links: