Google has renamed its rich snippets testing tool in webmaster tools to Structured Data, improved it to better reflect what the search result will actually look like and has expanded the types of structured data supported.
Google first launched rich snippets — enhanced markup of search results — in 2009 and has been adding the types of support markup ever since. In 2011, in conjunction with Microsoft and Yahoo, they launched schema.org, which expanded the types of markup available, although not every type of results is in the enhanced display (yet).
Implementing structured data that results in rich snippets can improve the click through rate of your pages from search results and better engage your audience.
The Structured Data Testing Tool shows not only what the search results display will look like, but what structured markup Google has extracted from the page.
The tool currently supports the following types:
- products with many offers
I’m having a bit of trouble with the tool. For instance, looking at the page they show in the blog post: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/banana-banana-bread/, the rich snippet appears in the tool correctly, as you can see in the screenshot above. However, the image is missing for this page in the actual search results.
Why isn’t the image showing up?
Webmaster tools has also launched stats about structured data. Choose Structured Data from the Optimization section to see the number of pages on your site from which Google has extracted structured data and how many types were found. You can click on a markup type to see the URLs that were found. I don’t quite get what this data is telling me, so I’m going to see what additional details I can find out from Google. What’s the difference between items and pages? If you have structured markup on significantly more pages than are shown on this graph, how can you find out what’s gone wrong?
As always, I’m happy to see Google provide more data, and a mechanism for debugging problems, these tools could just benefit from a big more debugging details.