The goal of inbound marketing and SEO is to get people to your site, so increasing your Click-Through-Rate (CTR) is essential to the success of any digital marketing campaign.
Rich snippets, rich cards, and Accelerated Mobile Pages are all designed with this in mind.
All of these use HTML to provide a better user experience (UX) for the viewer and a better CTR for your business.
There are several tools to help developers (or dilettantes) create and refine schema code for snippets, cards, and AMP (there’s even a tutorial for AMP creation).
Implementing these types of code can significantly impact your site’s user experience, and the rewards can be substantial for both the user and the business, increasing page rank, CTR, conversions, and your company’s bottom line.
Here are three simple steps you can take to improve your CTR and add value to your SERP listing.
You might not recognize the term, but you’ve certainly seen rich snippets in action. Rich snippets are a way for Google to provide more information about a site to users directly from the search engine results pages (SERP).
There are two main benefits to using rich snippets in your code: visibility and relevance. Both of these factors are crucial in increasing click-through-rate (CTR), leads, and conversions.
In the days of the Yellow Pages, businesses would pay a premium for larger or bold type because they knew that people’s eyes were drawn naturally to this.
Rich snippets accomplish this for modern businesses, increasing the visibility of a listing by prominently displaying information from the page on the SERP and making it distinct from the other results posted on the page.
User’s eyes are naturally drawn towards this distinction, increasing the likelihood they will visit your page.
In addition, the additional information provided by rich snippets on the SERP gives users a better idea of the content of the page, making the content more relevant to users who do visit.
This means that visitors to your page actually want the information provided, improving the user experience. This will reduce the bounce rate while increasing CTR and leads generated from the page.
Rich cards are a more visual version of the rich snippets. Instead of additional information being provided as a part of a traditional SERP listing, cards are displayed separately at the top of the page in a carousel of cards (carousels can have cards from different pages of a single site or from multiple sites).
Just like with the rich snippets, users are provided with additional information directly on the SERP, and the benefits to user experience (UX), search engine optimization (SEO), CTR, leads, and conversions still apply to rich cards.
Currently, rich cards are only available for certain categories – movies, recipies, local restaurants, and online courses, but these categories will certainly increase over time.
The benefit to rich cards over rich snippets is the visual nature of the cards. The engagement rate of images is 650x higher than text alone, so the combination of the page placement of cards and the use of images makes rich cards something you can’t afford to ignore.
Google is basing many PageRank decisions on user experience, and one of the key factors to UX is page load speed. Page speed affects bounce rate, CTR, and conversions dramatically (we’ve discussed these effects previously).
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are designed to reduce or eliminate load times by reducing the use of tags, eliminating forms, and streamlining HTML and CSS.
The downside to AMP is the need to store the pages on Google servers. This is how the pages are able to load so quickly, but it means that the URL links will show a Google address instead of yours.
Code can be added to your AMPs that allows tracking in Google Analytics, so you’ll still be getting your data.
Google is also now offering the ability to place ads and CTAs on AMPs, so you now have the ability to generate leads and collect revenue from these pages as well.
Just make sure your AdWords accounts are set up for the Google Display Network and ads will appear on your AMPs, and all of your CTAs will work with the exception of A/B test and smart CTAs (AMPs will use your default CTA).
Adding these three types of code to your site can have a dramatic effect on your CTR.
Rich snippets and cards draw the viewer’s attention to your business’s listing and they let the viewers know what kind of information is available, which increases the CTR and reduces the bounce rate.
Sites using AMP allow users to access this information faster, which improves user experience. Better UX translates to a higher CTR, more leads, and a better ROI.
By providing more and better information faster, you can make your visitors and Google happy about your site.