Click Networks - IT Support Glasgow

Click Networks - IT Support Glasgow
Click Networks - IT Support Glasgow

Friday, 28 May 2010

Enhance your website through Microformats & Google Rich Snippets

Microformats and rich snippets allow you to enhance your website in the SERP's (search engine result pages) and indirectly increase your clickthru rates and visitor traffic. Over the past year, search engines such as Google have started using Microformats to enhance their search results for users. Let’s look at how this can work with reviews, people and events.


You may have noticed in Google's search results product reviews appearing before the rest of the search result listings. Sometimes these reviews feature star ratings. Google calls such listings ‘rich snippets’, which are most often based on the hReview microformat standard. If you have product reviews on your website, hReview gives you the opportunity to mark up single user-generated reviews and an overall score of multiple reviews. In the image above, reviewer name and date of review can also be included in the search result.

More information on how Google uses the hReview microformat


If you have searched for a collegue or friend in Google before you may have noticed that sometimes their name, location and job title is in the SERP's. These results are rich snippets that Google uses based on the hCard microformat standard.

hCard is dedicated to marking up data that describes contact and social networking information. hCard can describe names, job titles, locations and the name a person is associated with.

More information on using the hCard microformat from Google


Some website's like The List, have event information displayed in Google's SERP's. This is because they have marked up their events data using the hEvent microformat standard. hEvent describes information such as event location, start date and time, and event name.

More information on using the hEvent microformat from Google

Benefits of Microformats

Microformats benefit the search engines in that it enables them to understand the data they collect more semantically and to easilly extract this data and incorporate and syndicate it across other contexts and mediums. This means they are able to deliver more relevant and timely results faster and easier to the end user.

Microformats also enable website's to distribute their content more effectively and thus indirectly gather more visitors through increased click-thrus to that data. If you are a website with lots of information on reviews, people or events then you should consider investing the time to convert your existing data to a microformat that will have a real effect on the bottom line of your business and give you a major advantage over you competitors in the SERP's.

Google do not accept all website's that have rich snippet microformat data, but are instead reviewing sites on a case by case basis. To be included in Google's rich snippet SERP, they recommend webmaster's submit their website's for review through this form.

If you would like to find out how Clicknetworks can help your company or organisation enchance its online presence and gain more traffic through microformats and rich snippets then simply contact us.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Google Caffeine and its impact on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

There has been a lot of buzz recently in the blogosphere about Google's new planned search architecture update codenamed "Caffeine". This new architecture has been designed to return results faster and to better deal with rapidly updated information from social media services including Facebook and Twitter. Google claims that the new search tool will improve the speed, accuracy, size, and comprehensiveness of Google search.

In the latter half of last year developers were given a preview opportunity to test out the new search architecture in the Google Caffeine Sandbox. Our initial testing showed that the new search update was very quick returning results in around half the time of the current setup. Other differences we noted was the impact upon search engine optimisation which seems to focus more on heavier keyword weighting and the importance of the domain's age.

So when is Google Caffeine going live?

There is a lot of speculation on blogs that Google Caffeine is live on around 80% of data centres. Unfortunately, there has been no official confirmation from Google yet that the new service is live, however some users will note a different Google search and results interface and some website owners will notice a shuffle in their rankings.

Ensuring your website does not lose its current ranking

We suggest that website owners and SEO specialists should take notice of Google’s rules in Webmaster Central to ensure they do not lose their rankings in the search results for major keywords. More specifically we suggest the following:

1. Do not copy other website’s copy. Google now checks for duplicate content and will penalise site’s with similar text content. Obviously, the website that has been online the most will contain the original content and won’t be penalised.

2. Do not duplicate the same content over and over again through doorway pages on the same domain. Your website may be flagged for duplicate content and you might lose significant positions for all your major keywords.

3. Do not hide keyword text or provide different results for Google other than what a normal user would see. Google has made it algorithm more sophisticated recently to catch out people who abuse the system. Exceptions to this rule can include tabbed content. As long as the content can be opened and closed by a user script this should not be a problem.

4. Do not link to suspected link farms or site’s which seem to be setup only for the purpose of obtaining a better Page Rank.

5. Do not Spam the Open Directory or Yahoo Directory with multiple listings for the same URL. Google does take into consideration whether a site is indexed with ODP and Yahoo and awards a higher weight for sites that have been included. Yahoo informs us that they are currently in the process of weeding out and penalising sites that have attempted to bypass their one URL policy. Those websites that have multiple listings in Yahoo may very soon find out that there domain has been permanently banned.

We advise all our clients to play by the rules. Yes there are unscrupulous SEO companies out there that will perform black hat techniques to get their client’s website to the top of Google, but for how long will their shady techniques last? I suspect not long as the major search companies perform ever more sophisticated checks to ensure the quality of their indexes. Matt Cutt’s from Google tells us that the single most important thing for webmasters to ensure good future rankings for their website in Google, is to provide high quality original and engaging content for their key audience. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it?

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Epilepsy Scotland's 2010 WAGS Dinner

Clicknetworks were proud to sponsor Epilepsy Scotlands 2010 WAGS Dinner at the marriot hotel Glasgow, Friday 29th april.

This years event was extremely well attended, Guests were entertained by Still Game Host – Sanjeev Kohli, along with Guest Speakers former Rangers Player Kevin Drinkell, Radio Clydes Lorraine Herbison, Well Known Ayrshire Speaker, Hugh Drennan and Slvia Kelly.

One of the main Prizes on the Night was the Chance to win a new Apple IPAD, by purchasing a key for the safe, over 120 keys were sold on the night and 1 lucky winner will soon be the proud owner of the new IPAD.