Earlier today, John Mueller hinted at a potential new Google ranking factor: structured data. Although Google has recommended using structured data for years, this is the first time that an employee has suggested that someday, structured data could potentially help sites rank higher in search results.
Three years ago Schema.org was introduced as the preferred structured markup method for webmasters and SEOs, with the goal of providing industry-specific vocabularies for describing various entities on the web.
According to a recent study conducted by Searchmetrics, websites with Schema implementation rank higher by an average of four positions when compared to websites without markup. However, the study also concluded that less than one percent of the world’s websites currently use Schema markup.
According to the New York Times, Starbucks and The Economist recently admitted that they use Google+ for SEO more than social media. “When we think about posting on Google Plus, we think about how [it relates] to our search efforts,” shares Alex Wheeler, vice president of global digital marketing at Starbucks. And Starbucks isn’t the only company reaping the SEO benefits from a building a strong presence on Google+.