Use structured data to optimize your content for search
It’s really hard to get Google’s attention. While content marketing is all the rage, it’s also provably effective. But let’s understand: There are ways of wooing search engines beyond starting a blog.
Google loves structured data. In a perfect world, we humans would be communicating in Extensible Markup Language instead of the unstructured data we kibitz on about in our sentences, paragraphs, and articles. We try to make it clearer by using categories and tags, but it’s often for naught.
One way to make things even clearer is to take advantage of structured data that Google understands immediately: events, reviews, recipes, etc.
Google also understands ecommerce and products and so forth, but that’s not what I do. But I do love to intersperse cool recipes, book reviews, events, product reviews, and general reviews into my blog posts, especially over at my health, sport, and fitness blog, rnnr.us, all built up on a very vanilla WordPress installation.
I have been using the WP Review, Recipe Card, WP Product Review, and Book Review Wordpress plug-ins to turn my long-form verbose blog posts into something that Google can more efficiently digest and regurgitate in search results.
And, if you do it right, your search results will be at least as pretty as these:
You’ll see that, unlike generic search results, your blog posts that are wrapped in a review or a recipe will be rendered with either a thumbnail photo or a rating.
In a world of text-only search results, having a splash of color or the added integrity of a proper review can be just enough competitive advantage to get you the click.
All things being equal, which one would you click on? Text on text on text or a splash of color from a pretty little square photo and/or a Google-endorsed review with stars and a rating?Surely, the prettier one, right? The one that appears to have an explicit Google endorsement, right?