The City of Boston website's “How to Pay a Parking Ticket” page, showing a tabbed view of ways to pay and instructions for the first of those ways, paying online.

The prevalence of voice as a mode of access to data makes providing structured content even more important. Software agents that are intelligent and voice aren’t solely freeing users they are changing user behavior. According to LSA Insider, there are many important differences between voice queries and typed queries. Voice queries often be:
Layout practices that build bridges between consumer requirements and technology needs to fulfill with business goals are critical to making this vision a reality. Content strategists, information architects, developers, and experience designers all have a part to play in delivering and designing content options that are structured.

Google Assistant app on iPhone with the results of a “how do I pay a parking ticket in Boston” query, showing results only weakly related to the intended content.

The search for a recommendation, MD, Stacey Donion, provides a very different encounter. Like the Town of Boston site above, Dr. Donion’s profile on the Kaiser Permanente site is perfectly intelligible to a sighted human reader. However, because its markup is presentational, its content is almost imperceptible to software agents.

  • Content Plan for Mobile, Karen McGrane
  • The City of Seattle website’s 'Pay My Ticket' page, with two HTML heading elements outlined and labeled for illustration, and an open inspector panel, where we can see that the headings look the same to viewers but are marked up differently in the code.

    Linked content and data aggregation

    Google Structured Data Testing tool, showing the markup for Dr. Ruhlman's profile page on the left half of the screen, and the structured data attributes and values for the structured content on that page on the right half of the screen.

    Remixed although these outcomes are not just aggregated from sources, but are interpreted to supply a response to my particular question. Getting instructions, placing a telephone call, and accessing Dr. Ruhlman’s profile page on are at the ends of my fingers.

    When we conduct Dr. Ruhlman’s Swedish Hospital profile site via Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool, we can observe that content about him is structured as small, discrete elements, each of which is marked up with descriptive types and attributes that convey the significance of these attributes’ values and how they fit together as a whole–all in a machine-readable arrangement.
    In this instance, Dr. Ruhlman’s profile has been marked up with microdata depending on the language. This foundation that is content that is structured provides the exact foundation on. The Knowledge Graph information box, for instance, includes Google testimonials, which are not part of Dr. Ruhlman’s profile, but which have been aggregated to this overview. The overview also includes an interactive map, made possible because Dr. Ruhlman’s office location is machine-readable.
    In late 2016, Gartner predicted that 30 percent of internet browsing sessions would be achieved with no screen by 2020. Even though there’s recent signs to suggest that the 2020 picture may be more complex than those broad-strokes projections imply, we’re already seeing the impact that voice search, artificial intelligence, and smart software agents such as Alexa and Google Assistant are creating on the way information can be consumed and found on the internet.
    Although this use of semantic HTML presents distinct advantages over the”page display” styling we found on the Town of Boston’s website, the Seattle page also reveals a weakness that’s typical of manual approaches to semantic HTML. You’ll notice that, at the Google Assistant outcomes, the”Pay by Phone” option we saw on the webpage was not recorded. This irregularity in semantic structure could be what is causing this option to be omitted by Google Assistant .

    The role of structured content

    In this instance, we can see that Google is able to find plenty of links to Dr. Donion in its standard index outcomes, but it is not able to”understand” the information about those sources well enough to present an aggregated outcome. In cases like this, the Knowledge Graph knows Dr. Donion is a Kaiser Permanente doctor, but it pulls in the wrong location and the incorrect doctor’s title in its endeavor to construct a Knowledge Graph display.
    To be able to tailor results to such queries that were specifically formulated, software agents have begun using the linked data in their disposal and then inferring intent.

    In addition to finding and excerpting information, such as parking ticket payment choices or recipe steps, applications and search agent calculations now aggregate content from several sources by using linked data.
    The City of Seattle’s”Pay My Site” page, though it lacks the glistening visual style of Boston’s site, also communicates parking ticket payment options clearly to human people:

    Google search results page for a bouillabaisse recipe including an image, numbered directions, and tags.
    A”featured snippet” to get about the Google results page.
    Google Structured Data Testing tool showing the markup for a bouillabaisse recipe website on the left half of the screen and the structured data attributes and values for structured content on the right half of the screen.
    Exactly the same page viewed in Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool. The pane on the right shows the machine-readable values.

    This”featured snippet” perspective is possible since the content writer,, has broken this recipe in the smallest meaningful chunks suitable with this subject matter and audience, and then expressed information about these chunks as well as the connections between them in a machine-readable manner. In this example, has used both semantic HTML and linked data to produce this content not merely a page, but also legible, accessible data that may be correctly interpreted, accommodated, and remixed by calculations and smart agents. Let’s look to see how they work collectively across indexing, aggregation, and inference contexts.

      Software agent hunt and semantic HTML

    The Company case for content that is structured layout

    Getting started: that and how

    A structured content design approach frames content resources–such as recipes, articles, product descriptions, how-tos, profiles, etc.–maybe not as pages to be found and read, but as bundles composed of small chunks of content data that relate to one another in meaningful ways.

  • Content Everywhere, Sara Wachter-Boettcher
  • The City of Seattle website’s “Pay My Ticket” page, with the HTML heading elements outlined and labeled for illustration.

    These components, when designed well, communicate connections and data hierarchy visually to readers, and to calculations. This structure enables Google Assistant to reasonably stipulate the text in those

    headings signifies payment options beneath the

    going”Pay My Ticket.”
    Structured content is currently a mainstay of various types of information about the web. Recipe listings, for example, have been predicated on structured articles for years. When I search, by Way of Example,”bouillabaisse recipe” on Google, I am provided with a regular list of links to recipes, as well as an overview of recipe measures, an image, and a pair of tags describing one instance recipe:
    Semantic HTML is markup which communicates information about the purposeful connections between document elements, as opposed to simply describing how they ought to look on screen. Semantic elements such as heading tags and list tags, for instance, indicate that the text they enclose is a heading (

    ) for the collection of record items (

  • ) from the ordered list (
      ) that follows.

      Google Assistant app on iPhone with the results of a “what time does Doc Dr Stacey donion office close” query. The results displayed include a card with “8AM–5PM” and the label “MulitCare Neuroscience Center, Monday hours,” as well as links to call the office, search on Google, get directions, or visit a website.
      Google Assistant app on iPhone with the results of a “how do I pay a parking ticket in Seattle” query, showing nearly the same results as on the desktop web page referenced above.
      Google search results page for Dr. Donion, showing a list of standard links for Dr. Donion, and a 'Did you mean: Dr Stacy Donlon MD' link at the top. There is a Google info box, as with the previous search results page example. But in this case the box does not display information about the doctor we searched for, Dr. Donion, but rather for 'Kaiser Permanente Orthopedics: Morris Joseph MD.'

      This statement was meant to aid strategists, designers, and companies prepare for the rise of cellular. It continues to ring true for its era of data. With the prevalence of queries and supporters, the website of an organization is less inclined to become a potential visitor’s first experience with content that is abundant and less. Such as ratings, hours, telephone numbers, and finding location info — in many instances –this engagement may be a user interaction with a data resource.

      Say that I would like to collect more information about two recommendations I have been given for orthopedic surgeons.
      There is not enough proof within this small sample to support a broad claim that algorithms have”cognitive” bias, but even if we allow for possibly confounding variables, we can observe the compounding problems we risk by dismissing structured content. “Donlon,” for example, might be much more common name than”Donion” and may be readily mistyped on a QWERTY keyboard. Regardless, the Kaiser Permanente outcome we’re given previously for Dr. Donion is for the wrong physician. What’s more, in the Google Assistant voice search, the interaction format doesn’t verify whether we meant Dr. Donlon; it just provides us with her centre’s contact information. In such cases, providing transparent content may work to our benefit.
      HTML markup which concentrates only on the presentational facets of a”page” may look perfectly fine to a human reader however be completely illegible into an algorithm. Take, by way of example, the City of Boston site, redesigned a couple of years back in collaboration with top-tier design and development partners. If I want to find information about how to pay a parking ticket, a link in the home page takes me directly to the”How to Pay a Parking Ticket” display (scrolled to show detail):
      You will also observe that although Dr. Stacey Donion is an exact match in all of the listed search results–which can be a lot of enough to meet with the first results page–we’re revealed a”did you mean” connection for a different doctor. Multicare does provide semantic and linked profiles.
      HTML is both semantic and presentational because individuals know what lists and headings look like and mean, and they can be recognized by calculations as elements with defined, interpretable relationships.
      In a layout procedure that was content that was structured, the connections between content chunks are specifically defined and described. This creates both the content chunks as well as the relationships between them legible to algorithms. Algorithms can then translate a content bundle as the”webpage” I am searching for–or remix and accommodate that same content to provide me a list of instructions, the number of stars on a critique, the amount of time left before an office shuts, and any variety of additional concise answers to certain queries.
      The model of expecting users parse and to discover those pages to answer questions and constructing pages from the era, is quickly becoming insufficient for communication. From participating in emergent patterns of information discovery and seeking, it precludes organizations. And it can lead software representatives to make inferences based on information that is inadequate or erroneous , possibly routing clients to rivals who communicate more efficiently.
      As a human reading this page, I easily understand what my choices are for payingI will pay online, in person, by email, or on the phone. But things get a bit confusing, if I request Google Assistant how to pay a parking ticket in Boston:
      In its simplest form, connected data is”a set of best practices for linking structured data on the web.” Connected data extends the fundamental capacities of semantic HTML by describing not only what kind of item a page component is (“Pay My Ticket” is a

      ), but in addition the real world concept that thing represents: that

      represents a”pay action,” which inherits the structural characteristics of”trade actions” (the exchange of goods and services for money) and”activities” (activities carried out by a broker upon an object). Data that is Connected generates a richer, more nuanced description and it provides the technical and structural information that algorithms need to bring data together from disparate sources.
      Instead of a selection of actions to follow up in my query, I’m presented with the hours of operation and contact information .

      The City of Seattle website‘s “Pay My Ticket” page, showing four methods to pay a parking ticket in a simple, all-text layout.

      Voice inquiries and articles inference

      Though each of those elements would seem the exact same into a sighted human the machine reads an enormous difference. They fall prey into the idiosyncrasies of the most well-intentioned content writers Even though WYSIWYG text entry fields can theoretically encourage HTML. By making content structure that is meaningful a core part of a website’s content management system, organizations may produce correct HTML for every element, every time. This is also the base that makes it feasible to capitalize on the rich relationship descriptions afforded by connected data.
      Not one of the links provided in this Google Assistant results take me straight to the”How to Pay a Parking Ticket” page, nor do the descriptions clearly allow me to know I’m on the ideal path. (I didn’t ask about requesting a hearing.) This is because the content on the City of Boston parking ticket page is designed to communicate content connections visually but isn’t structured in a manner which communicates those relationships to inquisitive algorithms.
      MultiCare Neuroscience Center, you’ll recall, is Dr. Donlon–the neuroscientist Google believes I may be looking for, not the surgeon I’m actually searching for–practices.

      Google search results page for Scott Ruhlman, MD, showing a list of standard links and an info box with an image, a map, ratings, an address, and reviews information.

      By conveying clearly in a context that includes inference and aggregation, associations are able to consult with their customers where users are, be it on an internet search engine results page, a website, or even even a voice-controlled digital helper. They’re also able to keep control over the truth of their messages by ensuring the proper content hauled and can be found across contexts.

      On creating material systems that work for algorithms and humans alike practitioners from the design community have shared a wealth of tools in recent years. These books and articles are a great place to start to Find out More about executing a content that is structured strategy for your company:
      These kinds of interactions that are fast, but are only one piece of a bigger issue: linked data is increasingly key to maintaining the integrity of content online. The associations I have used as examples, such as the hospitals, schools I’ve consulted for decades, and government agencies, do not measure the achievement of the communications efforts in ad clicks or page views. Success for these means connecting patients, components, and community members with accurate information about the business and services. This definition of achievement applies to any type of organization working to further its business goals on the web.

      Google search results info box for Dr. Ruhlman, showing an photo; a map; ratings; an address; reviews; buttons to ask a question, leave a review, and add a photo; and other people searched for.
      A combined HTML code editor and preview window showing markup and results for heading, ordered list, and list item HTML tags.

      Regardless of the simplicity of the Town of Seattle parking page, it effectively ensures that the integrity of its material across contexts as it is composed of content that’s marked up. “Pay My Ticket” is a level-one going (

      ), and also each of the choices below it’s level-two key words (

      ), which indicate that they are subordinate to the level-one component.
      In addition to the indexing function that conventional search engines function, smart agents and AI-powered search algorithms are bringing of obtaining advice: inference and aggregation, two modes. Because of this, design campaigns that are devoted to creating visually effective pages are enough to guarantee accuracy or the integrity of content published on the web. Rather, by focusing on providing access to data within a structured, systematic way that is legible to both humans and machines, content publishers may make sure that their content is equally accurate and accessible in these new contexts, whether or not they’re producing chatbots or tapping to AI directly. In this article, we will look at the forms and effect of content, and we’ll close with a set of tools which can help you to get started using a structured material approach to data design.
      The initial result, however, indicates that smart brokers might be at least partly susceptible to the exact same availability heuristic that affects individuals, wherein the advice that’s easiest to remember frequently seems the most appropriate.
      The Google Assistant search that is identical , however, offers a effect that is much more helpful than we see with Boston. In cases like this, the Google Assistant direct links right to the”Pay My Ticket” page and also lists several ways I can pay my ticket: online, by mail, and also in person.

      Google Assistant app on iPhone with the results of a “what time does dr. ruhlman office close” query. The results displayed include a card with “8:30AM–5:00PM” and the label, “Dr. Ruhlman Scott MD, Tuesday hours,” as well as links to call the office, search on Google, get directions, and visit a website. Additionally, there are four buttons labeled with the words “directions,” “phone number,” and “address,” and a thumbs-up emoji.