Google Introduce Rich Cards Feature

24 May, 2016

Last week, Google released a new addition to their mobile search results – rich cards. Primarily designed as an upgrade on standardised rich snippets, it is the tech giant’s hope that this new feature will ultimately improve the mobile search experience.

Alongside what was effectively a final warning to webmasters regarding the importance of a responsive website, rich cards are just the latest evidence of their desire is to improve the mobile search experience in every way possible.

Rich Snippets vs Rich Cards – What’s the Difference?

Both traditional rich snippets and the newly-introduced rich cards deploy structured Schema markup to enhance the search results. In simple terms, this basically means that the search engines can use additional information specified in a web page’s HTML to offer more information to the searcher.

With rich snippets, this is relevant for things like user reviews (you’ll have seen the work in action lots of times via the stars that appear alongside certain product results).

Rich cards also use Schema markup data, just for a different purpose. According to Google, they have primarily been designed ‘to provide data to Google Search about events, products or opportunities on your website.’

When you view them in search, you’ll immediately notice a couple of key difference. Firstly, they use a ‘card carousel’ design. Additionally, they also feature a higher resolution image designed to improve the overall user experience.

rich cards comparison

Are Google Using Rich Cards For All Searches?

No. At the moment, Google are only displaying rich card results in English on Importantly, they are only being rolled out for movie and recipe websites as things stand.

Moving forward, this is likely to change and we could see the feature become applicable for many more sites.

I’ve Heard About Changes to the Search Console

There has now been an additional section added to the Google Search Console. This includes indexing rates and error reporting that will help you to implement the new feature if it’s applicable to your website.

Moving forward, Google will then be looking to include a ‘rich results filter’ within Search Analytics. Currently in a closed beta stage, this should ultimately help you to track how your rich cards and rich snippets are performing in search. It is understood that it will eventually be possible to view both click and impression data for both.

Written by Sean

As chief crafter of copy, Sean’s flair for writing engaging content continues to prove integral to our internal and client marketing activity. With more than 5 years' digital experience, he joined Evoluted back in 2015. He spends his days managing SEO strategy, producing content and assisting Evoluted’s clients.

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