Yandex and Snippets

This isn’t in anyway ground breaking news, but it is something that is very different over in Yandex and as such I figured would make an interesting topic for a small post. This really probably won’t hugely impact Yandex SEO aside from how it impacts your CTR, although this is still an important factor and this does make for a pretty quick win.

Yandex actually offers webmasters a much greater deal of customisation over their snippets through Yandex webmaster tools than Google does so it becomes very important to utilise all of these features properly if you intend to actually achieve a decent CTR.

Here is a quick bulleted overview of the differences in the Yandex snippet to the Google snippet most of the key differences are that you can add things into Yandex WMT as opposed to battling with Microformats.

  • Yandex will often ignore your Meta and just take from content anyway
  • Favicons can and really must be added to your snippets in Yandex WMT
  • You can capitalise letters in your domains like in the above image
  • You can remove sitelinks that appear in your snippet in WMT
  • You can add in social links that appear in your snippet
  • You can add your contact info into Yandex webmaster
  • You can add prices and product info separately (it’s a pain because you need to submit Yandex’s special type of XML file the YML to Yandex WMT, probably worth it though as long as you’re not overpriced.
  • It Can take from Yandex Catalog and Dmoz (a bit like Google on that front but Yandex Catalougue instead of the Yahoo! Directory).
  • There are numerous unique types of snippets for official organisations, so if you’re an affiliate you can’t use them.

Out of these points the two that I’m going to go into in a little more detail are the unique types of the drawbacks of the social snippets and producing the YML file.

Social Snippets

The thing that you need to remember when choosing to add your social media accounts into your snippet is that they probably aren’t going to convert particularly well if you’re in the wrong industry, for someone like Spartak Moscow, that is fine as the users are likely looking for news, however I wouldn’t recommend it for say Pokerstars where it is less likely the user cares about following them on social and it is likely that they may just be offering the user an extra distraction.

Creating a YML feed

This is really easy to do in Drupal (http://drupal.org/project/yml_export) or Magento (http://www.magentocommerce.com/magento-connect/yml-export-module.html), just use a plugin; however I don’t know if the Magento one works.

Now in terms of actually converting an XML file to YML which is what most of you reading this in English will probably be looking to do, this post explains it reasonably well, http://blackrat.org/ruby/xml-to-yml-conversion/ although this isn’t really for marketing managers it’s much more something for the dev team.

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