30 juli 2020 Marketing 15 min

How do you showcase your event in Google Search?

Tjeerd Leendertse

Your online visibility is becoming increasingly important and more feasible. The internet is evolving, and the possibilities of becoming visible in more places (and reaching more visitors) have become more sophisticated. One of the options available to you is to make your event visible in Google Search.

How do you showcase your event in Google Search?

Simply put, Google Search is the search bar in your browser and is used billions of times on a daily basis. Plenty of reason to use Google Search in order to showcase your event to (potential) visitors.

In this blog, you'll read:

  • What it means to showcase your event in Google Search
  • Why you should be using it
  • Three ways to make your event visible in Google Search

What does showcasing your event on Google Search mean?

Showcasing your event in Google Search means that when potential visitors type 'events in [city/region]' into their Google Search bar, they'll see your event. In the image below, you can see what appears when I type 'events in Eindhoven' into Google Search. If you're organising an event in Eindhoven, you'd want it to be there too, right?

showcased events google search eindhoven

As you can see, there's a lot of visible information. This information is called structured data and is data that is saved in a set format. Take the time, location and event name, for instance; that's structured data (The same applies to visitor information gathered in relation to your event, but that's not important now). Potential visitors can see the basic structured data in the Google Search results, which gives them a lot of information about your event at a glance.

Why would you want to showcase your event on Google Search?

First of all, to increase your range. Showcasing your event will make it visible in several places allowing you to share relevant information to a broader audience.

Secondly, because if people are searching Google for events, they are probably interested in visiting an event or concert nearby. If potential visitors were looking for a particular event, the search terms would be more specific. So you have a group of potential visitors who are looking for something to do but don't know what yet. This is the perfect opportunity for you to promote your event and lure them in.

How do you get your event to show up in Google Search?

There are three ways you can make your event visible in Google Search. Depending on what resources you have and how your website is hosted, one of the three ways will apply to your business.

  1. A third party hosts your event's URLs:
    If your event's URLs, and therefore your website, are hosted by an external party, you'll need to contact them to make sure your event is visible in Google Search. You can stop reading this blog now.

  2. You use a CMS, but you don't have access to the HTML:
    If you use a CMS like WordPress, you can look for a plugin that adds structured data to Google Search. Another option is to use the Google Data Highlighter.

  3. You have some basic knowledge of HTML:
    The third option is to add structured data manually. This method takes a little more work than the other two but rewards you with control. In addition, you can tell people at parties that you're also a part-time developer. Yippie.

Before we continue, it's important that:

  1. Your event's URL isn't blocked by 'robot.txt'. Robot.txt ensures that a page can't be crawled. But wait, what's crawling?

Crawling is the indexing and ranking of URLs/websites by Google and other third parties. Google also searches for structured data to show your event in Google Search. A robot.txt would stop Google searching for your structured data.

  1. The server that runs your event URL(s) is powerful enough to handle Google crawling. While crawling, Google makes requests to be allowed to inspect, as it were. If your digital doorbell can't handle being rung a lot, then Google can't index the page, and it's not possible to show your event in Google Search.

EVENTIX TIP: Google Crawl request

If you've added new structured data from an event you can request Google to crawl your page again. This way, your event will be found in Google Search as soon as possible.

  1. Your event's URL is unique and contains information about a single event.

  2. Check if it's even possible to add an event to Google Search in your country. In the Netherlands it's possible, however; Belgium hasn't yet been added to the list of countries where showcasing your event in Google Search is available.

Adding your event's structured data

There are two ways to add your event's structured data. The basic principle is the same in both cases:

  1. By using a text editor like Sublime.
    The first option is to start working with a text editor, such as Sublime. This is a handy tool to help you easily edit code.

  2. Use Google's code lab.
    If this is your introduction to HTML, you can use the code lab offered by Google. This code lab guides you through the HTML. The significant disadvantage of code lab is that they use the example of a recipe in Google Search, which makes the structured data different.

Okay, that's enough beating around the bush. Let's get going!

Add structured data with Sublime

In this blog, we'll use Sublime to get ourselves up and running. Our reasoning behind this is that if you start with Sublime from scratch, you'll have a better understanding of what the code does. However, feel free to use Google's code lab in combination with Google's page on how to add structured data of your event instead.

Below you can see how a piece of code looks. At the end of the blog, you'll find the copyable code which you can paste into your file. Doing so means that you only need to modify the variables to match your event.

showcase your event sublime code

To get to this point manually, follow these steps. Otherwise, skip to the bottom to copy our code.

  1. Open Sublime and check whether the file type is 'HTML' in the bar all the way to the bottom-right of the window. If you just downloaded Sublime, there's a good chance the editor will be on 'plain text'. You can edit this by clicking on it and selecting HTML as your file type.
showcase event sublime select html
  1. Let start with the title. This is your event's name.
<html>
<head>	
	 <title>The Eventix Guides</title>
</script>
</head>
  1. We're going to add the element (<script type="application/ld+json">) that allows the page to be crawled. This is done by placing a script between the <head> and </head>. Always put this between these two tags. Otherwise, the code you're writing won't do anything. It'll look like this:
<html>
<head>	
	 <title>The Eventix Guides</title>
<script type="application/ld+json">
</script>
</head>
<body>
  1. Within this script, you're going to tell Google which schema it should use to retrieve the different types of structured data. Luckily you don't have to do this yourself, and Google has created a schema with the different types of structured data.
"@context": "https://schema.org/",
  1. Add the type of structured data. In your case this is obviously an event, which you add by adding "@type": "Event", to the code.

  2. Then add the name of the event by using "Name": "[name of your event]. Don't use this to create a Call-To-Action such as "50% DISCOUNT", but keep it simple with the name of your event.

 "name": "De Handleidingen van Eventix",
  1. After the name, add when your event starts and ends. This requires some explanation because this has to do with the different time zones.

Google uses GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) as a guide when retrieving the structured data' time'. This data is structured as follows:
‘2020-07-28T10:00+1:00’

What does this data say?
The event is on the 28th of July, 2020 at 10:00 in the morning in the Dutch time zone.

The '2020-07-28' part is the date of the event, whereas the 'T10:00' shows that the event starts at 10 am. The '+1:00' indicates the time zone relative to Greenwich Mean Time. If the event were in New York, the +1:00 would change to -5:00.

By the way, you don't have to add the time zone as extensively when organising an offline event. Google will take the timezone of the given location, but that will come back in a few steps. If you’re not sure if your code is correct, you can consult Google's time zone guidelines.

But what does this look like in code?
You add the start and end time by means of "startDate": "2020-07-28T10:00+1:00", and "endDate": "2020-07-28T16:00+1:00",. This means the event starts on the July 28th 2020 at 10:00 and ends at 16:00.

 "startDate": "2020-07-28T10:00+1:00",
    "endDate": "2020-07-28T16:00+1:00",

EVENTIX TIP: Timezones if you're organising an online event

If you're hosting an online event you must include the time zone in the code. Since an online event takes place on the worldwide web, a 'fixed location' can't be included in the structured data.

  1. After adding the start and end time, add the type of event. This can be offline, online or a combination of both. You add the type of the event by using "eventAttendanceMode". In this blog, we use the example of a physical event, and you can make this status known to Google by adding "https://schema.org/OfflineEventAttendanceMode".

If you're organising an online event or a combination of both, please use "https://schema.org/OnlineEventAttendanceMode" (for an online event) or "https://schema.org/MixedEventAttendanceMode" (for a combined event).

  1. Next you add the structured data that will let Google know if the event is planned. You do this by adding "eventStatus": "https://schema.org/EventScheduled", to the code.

  2. Now we've entered the data regarding the time, the type of event, and whether the event is scheduled, we'll add the location of the event. In this example, we'll use our office in Eindhoven. Please note that where it says "name" you do not enter the name of your event, but the name of the location.

  "location": {
        "@type": "Place",
        "name": "Multimediapaviljoen",
        "address": {
            "@type": "PostalAddress",
            "streetAddress": "Horsten 1",
            "addressLocality": "Eindhoven",
            "postalCode": "5612 AX",
            "addressCountry": "NL"
  1. We're almost there! After adding the address details, you can add a new place to sell tickets to the code.
   },
        "description": "The Eventix Guides are making their way to Eindhoven to show you how to showcase your event in Google Search!",
        "offers": {
            "@type": "Offer",
            "url": "https://yourticketshop.com",
            "price": "20",
            "priceCurrency": "EU",
            "availability": "https://schema.org/InStock", (shows if there are still tickets available)
 "validFrom": "2020-06-22T12:00"  (shows when tickets will be available)      }
    },
  1. Finally, you add yourself (the organiser) to the code
   "organizer": {
        "@type": "Organization",
        "name": "Eventix",
        "url": "https://eventix.io"
    }
}

Your code is finished and looks like this:

<html>
<head>	
	 <title>The Eventix Guides</title>
<script type="application/ld+json">
{
    "@context": "https://schema.org/",
    "@type": "Event",
    "name": "The Eventix Guides",
    "startDate": "2020-07-28T10:00+1:00",
    "endDate": "2020-07-28T16:00+1:00",
    "eventAttendanceMode": "https://schema.org/OfflineEventAttendanceMode",
    "eventStatus": "https://schema.org/EventScheduled",
    "location": {
        "@type": "Place",
        "name": "Multimediapavillion",
        "address": {
            "@type": "PostalAddress",
            "streetAddress": "Horsten 1",
            "addressLocality": "Eindhoven",
            "postalCode": "5612 AX",
            "addressCountry": "NL"
        },
        "description": "The Eventix Guides are making their way to Eindhoven to show you how to showcase your event in Google Search!",
        "offers": {
            "@type": "Offer",
            "url": "https://yourticketshop.com",
            "price": "20",
            "priceCurrency": "EU",
            "availability": "https://schema.org/InStock",
            "validFrom": "2020-06-22T12:00"
        }
    },
    "organizer": {
        "@type": "Organization",
        "name": "Eventix",
        "url": "https://eventix.io"
    }
}
</script>
</head>
<body>

You can check whether Google can index the structured data in the code. To do this, copy the URL of your event or the code in the field of Google's Rich Results.

Once you're up and running, you can see your results using a performance report.

That was it! We know it was a lot to get through, and hopefully, you haven't lost your mind with all the code. If you have, and you need help, feel free to reach out to us via our email.

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Author image

Tjeerd Leendertse

Content Marketeer

Writes about ticketing, experiences and marketing. Believes in the power of language and beautiful words (and puns). Is going to write another book someday.