When marketing and advertising are the topic of conversation, it’s only natural that everyone wants more eye-catching results, rather than dull ones. Rich snippets are in that regard something that all website owners want. They’re here to ensure more attention from possible consumers, which automatically leads to more sales. There are several questions behind the whole concept of rich snippets, but the most common one is how long does it take for rich snippets to appear?

It can take anything from 2 to 12 weeks for your rich snippets to appear. This is because Google needs time to analyze all the data, calculating which results match more with searched keywords. You shouldn’t panic if your rich snippet isn’t appearing after four or five weeks either.

Defining, developing, and using rich snippets properly isn’t as simple as one might think, that’s why the position of an SEO expert exists, to help companies with these problems. Today, however, we’ll be looking into answering these questions: how long does it take for rich snippets to appear? What’s a rich snippet? Do rich snippets help SEO? How to know if your website has rich snippets? And how to get rich snippets? Let’s get started.

How Long Does It Take For Rich Snippets To Appear?

There are several reasons why the length of time for snippet arrival varies from snippet to snippet. Firstly, there are rich snippets that won’t even appear. This is because Google’s algorithm doesn’t think that the structured data in question would be of any value to the searchers. When that happens, you need to think about redoing your snippet.

Google’s algorithms are constantly overwhelmed by the amount of various requests, not just rich snippet ones, so it’s natural that it’s going to take some time before the algorithm allows your snippet to be shown.

There are extreme cases where a new snippet appears within a few days, but those are terribly rare. It’s important to stay patient since it’s really not rare for Google to take two months to start showing your new snippet. Google’s algorithm is constantly analyzing your new snippet, and if you stop it from doing so in the middle of its job, you’ll be restarting the whole process – prolonging it. A lot of people just assume that their new snippet isn’t showing because Google didn’t find it to be good enough, so they start re-editing it; when in fact, the snippet was perfectly fine, it was just taking Google a lot of time to analyze it and post it. It’s recommended to wait at least for two months before taking another look at your schema markup, at which point you might want to think about seeing a SEO expert for help.

What’s a Rich Snippet?

Rich Snippets are Google Search results with additional data. They are sometimes also called Rich Results. That additional data can be a review (for example a rating of 5 stars, both individual rating and that of collective reviewers), a recipe (time to prepare the dish, reviews, recipe images), music (release date, length, track listing, etc.), product markup (gives search engines information about a specific product, price, and product images), organization (crucial information about an organization (like a business, or an NGO); contact info, logo, address), top stories (this allows the site to appear in the ‘Top Stories’ box in the search results, but it applies only to Google News approved websites), events (information on dates, times, locations, etc.).

These are all different types of rich snippets. It’s important to understand that they come in different shapes and sizes and that different kinds of snippets attract different kinds of audiences.

Do Rich Snippets Help SEO?

Rich snippets do not help SEO, at least not directly. Having structured data markup (or a Rich Snippet, in case you’re not a developer) will not improve your SEO on its own, however – it will improve it indirectly. Google lists search results based exclusively on search matching, meaning that no matter how good your rich snippet may be, if someone else’s (non-rich) result is a better match than yours, then their site will be shown before yours. Google is really determined to keep as unbiased as they possibly can, meaning that they only care about matching.

However, if your snippet shows more than someone else’s, then it’s likely that users of the search browser will click on your snippet, rather than someone else’s. Google’s algorithm will pick up on this, and just the fact that your snippet is so much more popular is going to improve your SEO, meaning you’ll move up on the list of results. Your rich snippet isn’t directly determining your ranking on your result list, but it’s definitely influencing it heavily.

Rich snippets on their own aren’t a sign of any official ranking, but they certainly possess the potential to boost your SEO and improve your ranking.

How Do I Know If My Website Has Rich Snippets?

There are several ways to do this. One way is to wait for Google Search Console to form their own report on rich results. This can, however, take anything from a week to a month, depending on how active your site is and how often does Google crawls through the information there.

It doesn’t matter whether or not you’ll be waiting on Google Search Console for their results, you should definitely check the source code on your website. When checking, look for your markup.

There are websites that populate the schema markup dynamically (for example websites using Javascript), for those sites only Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool will show results.

You can use a Structured Data Testing Tool to check that everything’s working properly in the background, while you’re waiting for Google’s Search Console to form their own report. Rich Results Test is another way to try out your schema markup, and it’s a tool developed by Google, as well.

How Do You Get Rich Snippets?

A lot of websites do this with the help of Schema.org, a collaborative project by Google, Bing, Yahoo! and Yandex – Schema supports all search engines. Schema just documents the schemas through code, and stores in it a place where developers and digital marketers can find all the structured data markup needed to communicate with search engines.

Schema is a community with the explicit purpose of creating, maintaining, and promoting schemas for structured data on the internet.

However, if you’re not a developer and don’t know how to add a snippet to your site, you shouldn’t feel intimidated. There are schema generators, created by Google, that let anyone create a schema markup, and the generator simply writes it down in the form of code and implements it to your website.

Prementioned Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper is one of those tools, but the one we want to draw attention to is Google Data Highlighter. Using it, you can literally highlight sections of your website, the ones you’d like to apply to your rich snippet. The tool will then write down your chosen information in the form of code, and implement it – can’t get much easier than that!

However, there is a drawback to this. Since you’re using plugins, these can get in the way of a template or theme set for your snippet. This is why developing the snippet is always better, if possible – developers can see the whole picture and resolve these issues before they even arise.

The best way is always hiring an expert to help. SEO specialists remove all the stress you could possibly experience when working with implementing foreign code and schemes. This also ensures the quality of your final product.

One should always tread carefully when working with snippets, as it’s the first thing your potential consumer will see once you pop up in search results. That’s why it’s best to hire a professional to do that job for you if that’s at all possible. However, if not, there are several ways for you to implement these snippets on your own, without the help of a professional.

The most important thing is not to underestimate the importance of first impressions, which is exactly what rich snippets are there for. You should always remain patient when waiting for the snippets to appear, as well, since it can sometimes take Google’s algorithms some time to start showing them, as they’re constantly bombarded by new requests. These snippets will not help your SEO, but will (if they’re good enough) help you grow the number of visits to your site, which in return can improve your SEO.