Rich snippets, Search Monkeys and clicks… oh my!

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On May 12, Google announced a few changes at their Searchology event. Some think these changes will transform the way we search forever and the skies will soon part, while others think it’s just another expected day of innovation coming from the best minds at Google. For those of you who aren’t in the know, Searchology is an annual event where Google lifts up its skirt with the purpose of giving reporters a sneak-peak at all the shiny new stuff being delivered. Soon after the announcement, the tweets, posts and feeds were working up such a frenzy I swear I could feel extra throbbing heat coming from my Mactop screen. For a nice breakdown and good commentary on the event, visit this blog post by SEOmoz’s CEO.

One of the things I found interesting was the announcement of “Rich Snippets”. “Rich Snippets” is similar to Yahoo’s SearchMonkey in that Webmasters can deliver information to search engines that can display the meaning of a search result in a brief, semantic way. If you want a better definition, you can see an official explanation and pretty pictures of it in action here. What perked my eyes up was that Google will allow webmasters, yes, real live humans with flesh and everything, to add markup formats in the code that Google will recognize and display as a rich snippet beneath the search result, making the search experience for Joe common a more fruitful one. The only kicker (OK, there may be lots of kickers, but this is the only one I could think of) is that from my experiences, a lot of webmasters out there can’t even add proper Meta-tags to their sites, so to rely on webmasters to deliver a richer experience may take some learning on their part. Or, it may take the fact that those who don’t adapt will not survive because with Rich Snippets, you can drive more qualified traffic to your site. And who doesn’t want that?

Enzo F. Cesario

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