We’re all familiar by now with the little author photos which appear in Google results. The initiative is supposed to help results from “trusted authors” stand out, and in the example below, where my own blog gets highlighted, you can get a fair idea of how effective it is:
There has been some talk in the last few days that Google is extending the concept to put company logos next to the relevant results, which would be of interest to a lot of us. Here’s what they have to say (and note the – rare – correct use of the most overused word of the last year, ‘iconic’):
Today, were launching support for the schema.org markup for organization logos, a way to connect your site with an iconic image. We want you to be able to specify which image we use as your logo in Google search results.
However, despite the implications you might draw from that, Google is not planning to start putting logos next to your company’s results in the same way as it has for authors. What the announcement above refers to is the rather odd panel Google calls the “Knowledge Graph” which appears top right in the results for certain searches, usually those with Wikipedia entries (below). And should you be the lucky recipient of one of these, you can already specify your logo by having a related Google+ page. The new announcement just provides an alternative way of pointing the search engine towards your official logo.
That said, I’m going to add this markup to my business website, because you never know when and where Google might start making use of the data. It’s a small addition which can’t do any harm.