The major search engines announced yesterday that they are uniting to launch schema.org. Google, Microsoft and Yahoo have launched the site to offer webmasters a collection of tags to use on their content pages for optimal search result displays.
Why should marketers care what their content looks like on search engine results pages? As Brafton has reported, Google's Matt Cutts suggests certain elements of the rich snippets can impact click decisions. For instance, he has defended the inclusion of the date in rich snippet results because “users love” that it is an indicator of whether “[a result is] relatively recent or evergreen content … or something that is really stale and out of date.”
With schema.org, the major search engines are uniting with the hopes of making the whole web richer. Google acknowledges it can be hard for webmasters to add markups when each search engine requires different codes. This offers a one-stop shop for brands that want to improve their sites' appearances on SERPs.
Of course, businesses should remember that using these codes won't impact ranking. Marketers might want to focus on building up their own sites before worrying about this microdata. Those looking to boost SEO and organic rankings should consider recent insight from Google suggesting that focusing on quality content is key.