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Authorship for Ecommerce?
Tonearm




msg:4620845
 8:34 am on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Should authorship markup be used on ecommerce sites which don't contain articles?

 

Shepherd




msg:4620853
 11:21 am on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Author of what? So, right off the top of my head, I think maybe author of the product description. Not an all bad idea if you have unique product descriptions UNLESS google takes the authorship markup and overrides the product description markup labeling your product description as an article. If this happens it would likely be a short, not really in depth article and likely subject to the wrath of panda.

netmeg




msg:4620855
 1:09 pm on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

I'm not doing it yet.

JD_Toims




msg:4620884
 7:07 pm on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

The official word I remember reading/hearing is: No

Collieman




msg:4620892
 8:14 pm on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Depends what you are selling. Most times no you should not use it.but let's say the website owner is a singer song writer...one song per page to download.do I tell him he can't use the author tag?

EditorialGuy




msg:4620898
 8:48 pm on Nov 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google seems to be backing away from authorship markup, probably for two reasons:

1) Most authors (other than SEOs and their clients) don't mark up their pages with authorship code, and...

2) Authorship markup is so often misused.

If you feel that you or a client are in a grey area in terms of authorship, the best approach might be to:

a) Use Google Authorship's "e-mail verification" approach, which simply tells Google that John Doe at [Google+ Profile number] is a contributor to the domain with the content. Google can then decide which individual pages are "authored."

b) Use a byline on any page that you want to be considered as "authored."

c} You might also want to use schema.org structured markup on the page, choosing a category like "CreativeWork" or "Web page" if it isn't an "Article." Think of this as a kind of disclosure statement: It tells Google and other search engines what the page is, and if they incorrectly think it's an "article," the misunderstanding is their fault, not yours.

JD_Toims




msg:4620920
 12:28 am on Nov 4, 2013 (gmt 0)

one song per page to download.do I tell him he can't use the author tag?

If the lyrics to the song were on the page, then that would be "authored text" a search engine could "see", so yes, I'd feel free to use it -- If only the "download" of the song is on the page, there's no content for a search engine to see as being "authored", so I wouldn't use it.

SevenCubed




msg:4620944
 4:28 am on Nov 4, 2013 (gmt 0)

c} You might also want to use schema.org structured markup on the page, choosing a category like "CreativeWork" or "Web page" if it isn't an "Article." Think of this as a kind of disclosure statement: It tells Google and other search engines what the page is, and if they incorrectly think it's an "article," the misunderstanding is their fault, not yours.


That's the way it should have been from the beginning. Google et all were the ones who inspired schema then turned their backs to it because they realized too late that it would be competing against them. Same is true for the highlighting feature in WMT. They want us to be dependent on them.

However, that statement sparked something in me that I've been wanting to start a new thread on for some time now. I can just never find the time to empty it outta my head in into my fingers to convey it. So, here's a chance to introduce it while staying on topic (it happens sometimes).

I really do agree with that statement as a whole from the perspective that I've noticed at times the googrhythm cannot differentiate between a local business site as an informational site or a local business. By that I mean the googrhythm, in some instances, doesn't recognize the difference between a discussion about a widget versus one who is a provider of the widget.

I suspect that the fault is partially with the site owner. Someone who is passionate in describing their product or service may sometimes write too much about it -- to the point where it dilutes the clues that it's actually about sales and not informational. It's one of various forms of over-optimization.

I say that based on an experience I've had over the last 1+ years with one site. The owner is passionate about what she does. I usually have to pull teeth to get owners to provide me with content, this one was the opposite. The site has just over 50 pages of info discussing a local service. The other end of the spectrum are ecommerce sites that publish a product name, a price and a big "buy now" button and then wonder why their sites don't rank.

The original one did well initially then sputtered and inherited a -50. When it happened, and while I was still trying to decode the fall, she hitched a ride on the tail of a passing comet and it moved her to a different region. As a result I had to 301 everything to a new domain name from EMD "region-service" to "newregion-service".

I decided to use the occasion to also revamp the underlying code to update it with what I had learned during the preceding year from discussions here at WW. I changed it over to HTML5 AND applied schema.org markup to identify it as a local business. Within a VERY short span of time in the new (as competitive) market she was on page one for many terms. Nothing else had changed except for the markup. All intext links and menus remained the same.

As it turned out the shooting star was as cold as ice so she moved back to her original location 9 months later. The original domain which I had been redirecting to the new one still had not expired so I simply redirected the whole site once again back to the original "region-service".

Guess what. There was no longer a -50 on the domain. Within a very short span of time the site began ranking for targeted terms onto page 1. The only thing that had changed between the time she left and returned was some basic markup and the addition of schema.org local business identification.

Actually there were many other things that changed during the interim, but not on the domain -- googrhythm is now experiencing vertigo from it's perpetual changes. I don't have enough evidence to say definitively that the minor markup changes were beneficial based on only one domain this was observed on. It might have simply been a coincidence.

I point that out because I don't want members jumping up and down flipping everything to schema markup then coming back and flipping me the (humming)bird.

It may be worth testing on a small scale of a small percentage of a site for owners who have thrown in the towel on adversely affected sites. As an aside, keep in mind that schema.org markup is INVALID code on any doctype less than HTML5. Sites developed using older doctypes would need to apply something like microformats. I have no opinions or observations concerning microformats so I cannot attest to the value or lack of value.

I'm providing the info based on observations, right or wrong, I think the schema markup helped in properly classifying the nature of the domain.

And another cautionary suggestion: If a site owner is humming the same tune as one of googs properties in might work against oneself to clearly identify it as such. Just sayin'.


<looking up at the title of the OP once again, dang I think I kept it OT>

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