Schema Markup: Boost Your Rankings in 2022

Regardless of how smart we think search engines are, they still struggle to understand the contents of a web page and what it’s about. There are certain tools that make it easier for bots to understand your content and possibly rank it better. This is where schema markup comes into play.

What is Schema Markup?

Schema markup, also known as structured data, is an additional technical SEO element that helps you optimize your web page better. It also helps search engine notice you and rank you better on the SERP (Search Engine Results Page). Schema markup is a semantic vocabulary or code that is added to the HTML of your website to help search engines understand the content better. It also helps provide more targeted results for users.

Once you add this microdata to your website, it creates a ‘rich snippet’ for your page. In simple terms, it creates a more detailed description of your page to display on the SERP.

schema markup events

For example, observe the image above. If you include microdata tags for “chocolate cake recipe” on your website, this is what the search results would look like on Google. It has rich snippets like cooking time, images, and even reviews which gives the searcher more value.

Why Is Schema Markup Important

Schema markup is a relatively new trend in SEO, and most SEO experts are more familiar with HTML tags. However, HTML tags will only tell the search engine how to display the information in the tag without giving any information about what the text string means.

For example, <h1>Iron</h1> tells the search engine to display the text string data in a heading 1 format. – ‘Iron’ could be the mineral nutrient for living organisms or the mineral ore that can be mined – making it harder for search engines to show content that a searcher would find relevant.

This is just an example of why schema markup is important when developing web pages and working on the SEO of your website. Some other reasons why schema markup is important will be discussed as we go on so read on!

It Helps Search Engines

The structured data that you add to your page marks up some elements on the web page. This helps Google and other search engines to not only read the data on a page but to understand what the data means. The description added to the web page also helps search engines sort through the information and intelligently present what best fits the search phrase that a user types. It presents the information to the user in new and useful forms. 

For example, a rich snippet might appear on a hotel’s homepage with details of upcoming events. With this, when a user searches for the hotel, information about events that might interest prospective visitors appears on the SERP. This motivates the user to click and read more.

markup events

In the image above, the SERP was notified by the Schema Markup to show these events as parts of the search results for Beverly Hills Hotel.

It Helps Web Pages Rank Better

There is no data to prove that the presence of schema markup on a web page is an SEO ranking factor for search engines. However, when schema markup is added to a page, it helps the page stand out with more information. This will get your website noticed on the SERP and is sure to improve the click-through rate.

Some SEO research has found that rich snippets increase a web page’s organic traffic by at least 30%. Although Google has not added schema markup as a ranking factor, many webmasters consider it as one of the best practices for search engine optimization.

It Enhances Your Appearance On The SERP

The appeal of your web page depends on how Google and the other search engines out there see your website. Search engines have to first crawl your web pages, index them and present them to a viewer in the best way possible. Using schema markup as structured data helps the search engine to read the details of the content of your web page and present it to the most relevant searcher. Examples of schema markup appearing on a SERP are ingredients and cook time for a recipe web page, events calendar for a hotel, ranking for a movie rating web page, etc.

When using structured data, this information is available on the SERP, making your web page more attractive and urging viewers to click. Schema markup creates a structure of your website that is independent of the web design to display on search engine results pages.

It Makes Automatic Linking Of Data Easier

The way search engine users request information was primarily through search engine queries. However, with the constant evolution of search engines, data from social media networks; Twitter, Facebook, Instagram are now added as relevant results in the SERP. In addition, search engines now produce results to search queries based on a user’s saved cookies and observed online behavior. For example, you’re a chef that reads a lot of chicken recipes, additionally, you have subscribed to a chicken recipe food blog and Twitter feeds that offer different chicken recipes. If you make a search query about ‘drumsticks’, it is more likely that the results will yield more web pages about chicken drumsticks than drumsticks used with a drum set.

If I do a quick search on Google, I get the following split results. Google does not have enough data about my interests and, therefore, the ads pulled (which are intelligently displayed based on a user’s search behavior profile) present all types of possible drumsticks.

Types Of Schema Markup

There are duffy types of schema markup available for different types of websites and website contents. The type of content on your web page will direct you to the type of schema markup you should use on your website. Here are the most common types of schema markup.

Organization Markup

Organization schema markup highlights the company’s key profile in a summary. This summary includes company name, official logo, location, social profiles, contact information. It gives a viewer a concise description of the company and an idea of what it does. Users don’t have to dig deep around the web and people can easily find the contact information of the company right away.

organization markup

Person Schema Markup

A search engine will assume that if you’re searching for someone by name, then you want to know the basic details about a person. The person schema markup will show information about a person’s date of birth, education, family relations; additionally, a summary of the person’s profile.

person schema

Local Business Markup

A local business is in this case, a particular physical location of an organization in proximity to the searchers’ location. So, a local business schema markup will show the business location, opening hours, address, contact info, and website. The address and contact number usually come with a direct option to view the location on a map and make a call. This makes it easier for prospective customers to contact you, which is possibly one of the most commonly asked by my clients. If you need SEO consultant advise, feel free to reach out to me.

schema markup local business

Product & Offer Markup

Product and offer markups are used to create sales on an item or service. While both markups will provide information about the product, such as price, availability status, and a description, the offer markup will only provide information about the price and price currency.

product markup

For example, in the image above, when you search for a product like ‘PlayStation5’ you can immediately see the product name, price and currency. This is important for sales and will push the audience to make a purchase decision.

Article Markup

The article schema markup is used for news and blog posts. There are several types of Article Schema Markup for different types of articles. So different types of markup that will be used for blog posts, news articles, and scholarly articles. This type of schema markup displays the headline of the news, the time it was published, and a featured video or image.

article markup

Breadcrumbs Markup

A breadcrumb markup consists of a chain of links that will typically end with the current page. Here, web pages are described using their URL and their name. It displays the location of a business and reduces the bounce rate of a website.

schema markup breadcrumbs markup

Recipe Markup

The recipe markup is designed for recipe web pages to display a recipe in a rich text that describes the cooking procedure, cook time, and also a rating. Here, the goal is to make users evaluate and anticipate the finished product to urge them to click. This recipe schema markup may contain just the name and description. However, for better optimization, be sure to include the prep time, nutritional information, an image or video, ingredients, and food review.

recipe markup

Video Markup

Video schema markup, also called video object markup is a good way to help Google understand your video content better. Many search engines still find it challenging to crawl and index video content. However, using a video markup on your web page makes it easier for the search engines and also allows your videos to appear in video search results, along with other videos from YouTube. The video markup will typically display a description of the video.

video

Event Markup

Event Markup provides additional information about an event, lecture, concert, seminars, etc. It displays the date, location, and price of the event. This helps viewers to make a buying decision before clicking on the web page.

event

FAQ Markup

The FAQ markup provides a list of questions and answers that Google reads to create a rich snippet. It is usually displayed as a collapsible list under a SERP.

FAQ markup

Rating & Review Markup

This displays the ratings of a product, service, movies, location, etc., and also a review from users. It generates your best and presents it on the SERP. Thus, providing useful information to the buyer to make a purchasing decision without digging too deep.

rating

Software Application Markup

This will display information about the type of software application, a subcategory of the application, and the name of the application suite. Additionally, it also displays available countries, devices to access the information, etc. This information can appear in either text or URL form on the SERP.

software markup

Site Navigation Markup

Also called site navigation element. It refers to the navigation element found on a web page, and it helps create a better navigation system of your website to improve user experience. This is beneficial for both website visitors and search engines trying to crawl and index the pages of your website.

site navigation markup

How To Add Schema Markup To Your Web Pages

Now that you know the types of schema markup, you can determine what best suits your web page and its content. Next, you need to know how to use schema markups and add them to your web pages. Follow these 7 simple steps to add schema markup to your website.

Use Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper 

Google is a close friend of every webmaster that hopes to get the best out of search engine optimization. They have provided tools for all steps to optimize a website, ranging from Google AdWords to Google Search Console to Google Trends. Their structured data tool automatically generate the schema markup code snippet to place on your website. No coding experience is required!

Sort Through The Data Types

Choose the data that best matches the content of your website. Many options are listed on Google’s Structured Data Markup and the list is not exhaustive. I’ll pick the option of Article since it’s the most common type of content.

Copy and Paste The URL You Want To Markup

Copy and paste the desired web page’s URL and click the button “Start Tagging”. The web page will load in the markup tool and you’ll see it on the left and the data items on the right. This will be your workspace for the next phase of markup.

schema markup

Select The Schema Elements To Markup

Begin selecting the elements from your article that you want to markup. Highlight the title of the article to add ‘Name’ markup, then select ‘Name’ from the status bar in the right pane. The tool will automatically add the blog title to the ‘Data items’.

Continue adding other elements in your article to the data list by highlighting them to add them to the markup list. You do this by using the list of data items in the right pane as a guide. The list is endless and you won’t be able to add all the items at once. So just do what you can according to your priority.

schema markup

Create The HTML page’s

Once you’re done adding elements to the markup list, click ‘Create HTML’. The tool will then present you with the HTML of your page. This highlighs the relevant microdata inserted in the places you selected. Mine looked something like this:

<!– JSON-LD markup generated by Google Structured Data Markup Helper. –>

<script type=”application/ld+json”>

{

“@context” : “http://schema.org”,

“@type” : “Article”,

“name” : “Best Platform to Advertise Your Business: The 2021 Guide”,

“author” : {

“@type” : “Person”,

“name” : “Eduardo Cifre”

},

“datePublished” : “2021-07-21”,

“articleSection” : “learn some valuable insights that will make it much easier to figure out what platform to use depending on what you’re looking to achieve.”,

}

</script>

Add Schema Markup To Your Website

Next, add the markups that you have created to your website. There are three ways to deploy the schema markup to your website:

  • Use HTML
  • Using Google Tag Manager
  • Using CMS

The most beginner-friendly way to do this is using a content management system (CMS) or plugin. Alternatively, you can download the automatically generated HTML file. Then copy and paste it directly into your source code.

Test your Schema Markup

When you click ‘Finish’, a tooltip will pop up with a series of ‘Next Steps’ to follow. After this, the last step is to test your structured data. Use the Structured Data Testing Tool to see what your page will look like with your markup.

Instead of analyzing a published web page, you can analyze the HTML code generated by the testing tool. It will show you a preview of what your page will look like on Google.

How To Monitor Your Schema Markup

Schema markup does not end with the deployment to your website. You need to keep checking the accuracy of the markup after implementation. It is easy to monitor the accuracy by assessing the validity of your deployed markup. You can also measure the impact that it is having on your site performance on the SERP page.

If you validated and tested your markup after deployment, you should not experience any challenges.

Once again we’re back to Google. Google Search Console shows all the detected markup types on your website under the “Enhancement” tab. Results from Google Search Console can take time depending on how often Google crawls your site.

search console

You can also use Schema Markup Validator (SMV) to check for errors in your structured data.

Examples of Schema Markup

  • ps5: An example of a SERP shows listings of a search query for a ps5 with and without schema markup. The first two have no schema markup but the last one shows the rating of the product. This makes it more likely to be clicked by a user. markup example
  • Events In The US: In this example, you can see that schema markup used to show the name of the event, date, and location. markup example

Conclusion

Schema Markup takes your SEO strategy to the next level. It does this by making your content appear important, credible, and informative enough for Google’s bots to pick up and rank. This is a vital part of any SEO strategy as we head into 2022. Schema Markup is definitely a tool that any online business owner should explore.

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