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Rich snippets – the idea sounds great in principle. Enter data using a special code that the search engines recognize and have that data added to your pages listing in the search results. Ratings, prices, telephone numbers, opening hours; it all sounds great – in principle.

Judging from many of the responses on Google’s Knol page on the subject (unanswered questions at that), you would have to wonder if they were worth the effort. I think it is for a number of reasons, namely:

  1. It’s the way of the future. While Google isn’t using them extensively as yet, the time will come when this data is used across the board. Including them now means your pages are prepared and you wont have to go back through your pages to update them later.
  2. They are being used now. While there is no guarantee that your rich snippet will appear your search results, many are. The only saying “you have to be in it to win it” comes to mind. If you don’t include rich snippets, you wont see them in your search listings.

When it comes to winning a click from a user, the more relevant information you can have displayed in the search results the better. If your competitors are showing rich snippet information and you are not, there is a good chance they will win the clicks – that’s not good for your business.

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