I have a web application that serves as a dictionary, and it ranks well in Google when searching for a rare word in my language (the dictionary's target language). I want the result to appear in the define: some-word, as well as in the search results when someone uses the filter tool "Dictionary".

Should I add some special meta-tag in the head of the HTML? How about structured data, e.g., with Microdata?

Does Google have a special webmaster tool for registering dictionaries like: wordnetweb.princeton.edu or en.wiktionary.org?


1 Answer 1


The define: <word> that Google shows at the top of the page is a type of Google one box. Google shows these special displays at the top of the search results for things like searches for:

  • images
  • video
  • stocks
  • currency
  • maps

Google does not use microdata to power one boxes. Rather it chooses the sites to feature manually and writes code to do so.

The only ways to get your site featured in the define: one box for your language would be:

  • Contact Google and get through to the right engineer (a very difficult prospect)
  • Hope that when Google rolls this feature out to your language, that you site is one of the top dictionaries and is found by the the engineers at Google that are implementing this feature.

Dictionary definitions have semantic markup built into HTML. This is one of the few cases of semantic tags that have been in HTML since its earliest days. Because semantic tags exist in HTML itself, there is no schema.org markup for dictionary definitions. Use the following tags:

  • <dl> - Definition list
  • <dt> - Defined term
  • <dd> - Dictionary definition

For more information, see this excellent article.

  • what about google's sitelinks feature? If each word is on a different page and you have a brand or sitename including dictionary, it may show as a sitelink?
    – Mousey
    Sep 13, 2015 at 21:27

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