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Those searching for images on Google may have recently noticed results are appearing labelled with the word product, review or even recipe. This is part of Googles new markup feature, introduced in early August.
This new feature aims to allow searchers to discover more than just the images within results, with the new labels showing that there is much more to find out about the image in question. For example, if you’re looking for a specific product, in this case, mirrors, a label is shown to inform you that the image is a product you can buy, as well as including the price and a link through to the site.
Whilst these could be mistaken for ads, markups are applied manually by publishers, who can apply them to their pages in order to display badges for things such as recipes, products, videos, reviews, and GIFs.
There are a number of important benefits that come with product markups, including the following;
If you’re giving searchers more information about what is included in the image or what it links to you’re likely to give people much more accurate results that are often more useful for users.
Adding markups allows you to offer content that is much more engaging, as well as content that allows you to view content in a much more exploratory manner. Such as looking for recipes or reviews when carrying out research for food or products.
Ultimately product markups help searchers find more content, helping them discover content that is useful, accurate and content that can benefit them, rather than just letting them find an image and that being it.
Products that offer rich results and provide users with more in depth information such as the price, availability, reviews, and ratings are likely to generate more engagement, however, there are guidelines in place that do apply to the markup;
You have to include markups for specific products, meaning you can’t include them for something such as “our entire collection” if you wanted to apply markups to a full collection then you need to do so individually.
For example, when submitting reviews, it’s important that these reviews are valid, such as using your full name or using the name of the company, this is how Google is aware your entry is authentic.
In order to protect audiences, adult related items aren’t supported.
With Google looking ready to roll out a number of significant updates to its searching capabilities in the next few months it’s unsurprising that these small changes are starting to appear.
To find out more about how these badges can be used, check out the Google Webmaster blog.