Schema data has become a central piece of the local SEO puzzle. On the morning of May 13, Google announced that they now have added additional schema support for business information. Specifically, they now handle several types of helpful business data that enhances user experience, explained in more detail below.
Pierre Far, one of the Googlers involved in this project, said on Google+ the specific schema data supported for the rich snippets include:
- Customer service (and other) phone numbers
- Business opening hours, locations
- Restaurant menus
There is an ongoing forum discussion at Google+.
Bottom Line: Google continues to strive to improve the search experience. SEO was previously a bag of tricks to make Google “think” your website was the most relevant search result to gain rankings. Now, the trick is to actually make your site the most relevant result to searches for the keywords that are being optimized. A lot more work, but a lot more fun, in my opinion.