8 Microformats Decoded For Semantic Markup Of Your Website

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Microformats are a web based approach for semantic mark up and uses preexisting conventions to provide metadata. Microformats enable semantic markup of certain types of information. Other than hCard and hCalender, all microformats remain as draft. Microformats are very helpful in SEO of your website. It not only helps search engines to find information on your site but helps users as well in finding about your website. If you wish to get your business listed on a local directory and get highlighted in local search results of search engines, microformats come to your rescue. With the help of microformats you get better rankings on search engine as your content gets highlighted in better light. Microformats are a powerful way of conveying information about your website in snippet itself.

Microformats Decoded – Semantic Markup For Your Website

1. hCard

This microformat is used to publish contact details of places, people, companies and organizations in XML, atom, RSS or arbitrary XML formats. It is used by mapping applications and tools to display the coordinates of a place with contact information. The coordinates are displayed with the help of Geo Microformat which is a part of the hCard specification. Users can load the contact information in their address book programs. Facebook uses hCard to markup event venues. Some of the important hCard attributes are bday, email, note, photo, post-box-office.

2. hCalender

It is a simple format which is used for publishing events on the web. The representation used for events is of iCalender format. It helps the parsing tools to extract and display event information on web. The hCalender format helps in indexing, searching, loading of events in a calendar program. They can be also used for timelines. Geo Microformat which is a part of hCalender specification helps in including event coordinates for providing event location.

3. hatom

This microformat is used for marking up content on web pages that contain blog entries. Atom is syndication format used for web feeds. These web feeds are identified by software which checks for updates which are published on the site. A feed may contain headlines, full text articles, excerpts, summaries and links to content on a website. Atom is an alternative to RSS feed which had limitations in functionality as it lacked updates. With the help of hAtom you can individually subscribe for parts of web pages. These individually subscribe able parts are called Web Slices. These web slices are understood by Internet Explorer 8 and Firefox can understand it using plugins.

4. hResume

This microformat is very helpful in publishing Curriculum vitae or resume using XML on the web. It uses HTML classes and rel attributes for semantic markup. hResume contains all the parts of typical resume and the display of the resume doesn’t get affected in the browser. Linkedin uses hResume microformat for its site. You can use hResume Creator tool to create and publish resume in hResume format. WP resume is one such solution to publish your resume in hResume microformat on WordPress.

5. hReview

This microformat is used in publishing review of books, restaurants, movies or books on the web using X(HTML). It can be easily created and published using hReview creator tool. hReview enables sharing, distribution, syndication and aggregation of reviews across the web. Some of the attributes of hReview are reviewer, rating and description. Reviewer is used to notify about the author of the review. Rating is a fixed point integer value from 1 to 5 which is used to provide ratings of the book, movie, food etc.

6. hProduct

This microformat facilitates publishing of details of a product using X(HTML) classes and rel attributes. This microformat is very useful for consumers, manufacturers and retailers. It helps the consumer in making best product choices by informing them about product attributes. It helps manufacturers and retailers to list their products in a better way. This also helps in syndication and analysis of the products.

7. XFN

X (HTML) Friends Network is a microformat that simplifies representation of human relationship using links. XFN defines relationship between individuals by using small sets of value that describe personal relationships. They allow authors to indicate that a weblog belongs to a certain friend whom they have personally met or know through certain association. It is an effort to humanize the blogrolls.


It is used for publishing outlines, list and blogrolls on web using preexisting conventions. Outlines consist of hierarchy of points and sub points. Each of the point or sub point has some properties which need to be represented. The property could be a label/text etc. This is when XOXO comes handy.