Earlier, the Google Blog walked us through the evolution of sitelinks. You’ve probably noticed sitelinks in your everyday browsing, even if you didn’t know what they were called. The sitelinks are the highlighted results that show up beneath a website’s main search result. These sitelinks point to deeper parts of the website that may be useful to you. Sometimes, these are very helpful. For example, check it out for Yelp.com:
Not only does this make it easier to get to the specific city you’re looking for, it also helps declutter the search results, since all of the results relevant to Yelp.com will be lumped into this search result.
The breaking news about sitelinks, per Google, is that they have upgraded sitelinks from a simple list of links to a full array of sub-search results, replete with full URLs and a very tiny snippet of description. Sitelinks are now a bit more dynamic and flexible, meaning that they will be different for the user depending on the search term they used.
While enlightening, the blog post that discusses the evolution of sitelinks leaves out the answers to the most burning of questions for webmasters and bloggers. Namely:
- How do I get Google to include sitelinks for my website?
- How does Google choose which links to include in my sitelinks? And can I change which sitelinks appear in my search engine results?
- How does Google choose the snippet text for my sitelinks?
Over the next three days, I’ll be giving you as much information as I can on these topics. As with most Google algorithms, the inner workings of sitelinks are a closely guarded secret. But there are some general best practices and guidelines that we can follow in order to boost our potential SEO value.