Chris Silversmith writes “Should You Geotag Pages For Local SEO?” over at Search Engine Land today, giving a thorough overview of the hCard Microformat, its uses and possible alternatives.
In his post, Chris writes:
In the past, I’ve strongly recommended the use of semantic markup in the form of hCard microformats as a component of local search optimization. hCard allows contact info such as addresses and phone numbers to be disclosed precisely to devices that are able to read them.
Let’s take a look at a working example of hCard in action. For the purposes of demonstration, I’ve decided to use an example job posting – for our friends at Distilled who are recruiting for their latest Web Developer position.
Fortunately, the good folks at Microformats.org have built a hCard creator, which enables quick and easy templates that fit your available data. Here’s a screenshot:
Instantly, you can see how easy it is to markup your page using this Microformat, provided you have the correct data available.
Here are those newly marked up details as displayed on the bottom of the page in all of their glory:
And here’s the actual code…
As Chris puts it, “Will this give your pages some sort of ranking advantage? Not really.” – but there’s no doubt that rich snippets could one day give you an advantage over the other nine results in the organic results, visually. In my opinion, now is the time to start experimenting with structured data in your HTML markup, especially as search engines move rapidly towards supporting the standards.
To that end, my experiment will be to use the structured hCard approach in each of my job postings. Not too much of a problem, I just need to hack the markup into my Contact Form 7 output :-)