Microformats for casual / normal internet surfer, useful or useless ?

MicroformatsI’ve been thinking on using Microformats on this blog for a while after reading Lorelle’s post about this topic on her blog. Although implementing microformats on wordpress theme can be considered as an easy task, but i’m just wondering whether using microformats on this blog is really that useful, considering most of this site visitors can be considered as normal internet surfer. Other than that, currently enabling microformats on your website doesn’t really give you benefit from the SEO point of view (and SEO is important to drive people to your site via search engine)

Based from what i’ve read so far, it seems that currently Search Engine doesn’t really care whether you use microformats on your site or not, and like most of you already know that most casual or normal internet users use search engine to find your site. And when i’m saying about search engine they just using normal search engine such as Google, Yahoo, Live, Ask, and some small search engine (although those big 4, plays the important part on driving traffic to your site) …

Well, I’m afraid to say that this answer is very simple. Currently microformats affect SEO the same way content on your website affects it. From a web crawlers perspective there is currently no distinguishing factor between a microformat and standard content on your website. Why is this? Well, microformats are composed of common XHTML attributes and tags of information that are used in a standardized way, therefore engines such as Google and Yahoo treat it as exactly that, standard information.

Though it may change in the future …

So the question is … do microformats useful for normal internet surfer who’s not using Del.icio.us, know nothing about Digg or similar website ? i dont think so …


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3 comments on “Microformats for casual / normal internet surfer, useful or useless ?

  1. All that is likely to change when microformats get more support in the browser. Even a non-savvy user can use them if Firefox has an “add to address book” button. And Firefox 3 will have native microformat support.

    The short of it is that it’s good to have for the savvy net user, and it could be good for the non-savvy ones in the future. Plus supporting it is really easy, so why not support it anyway?

  2. Hello Andy,

    Thanks for commenting, and to clarify it .. actually most people i know (online / offline) can be considered as non tech savvy users, while for some tech savvy users it can be considered as useful feature / addition

    a good example is from your comment like the hCard microformat, most people i know isn’t using the Address Book they just simply use copy from the webpage they’re viewing and then paste it into their favorite text editor (from notepad to excel), even those who’s can be considered as tech savvy users still prefer to use the old copy paste method

  3. If you mark up your contact details with the hCard microformat, I can add them directly to my address book.

    If you mark up your event details with the hCalendar microformat, I can add them directly to my calendar or diary app.

    If you mark up a list of coordinates with the Geo microformat, I can pull a KML file from the page, and see them overlaid in Google maps or Google Earth.

    What’s not useful about that?