Schema structured data markup is a code you add to your website’s HTML to help search engines understand and display your content. Once added to your website, a schema creates an enhanced description, or rich snippet, that appears in search results. With schema markups, the users get information-rich results when searching for products and services online. Adding schema markup to your website’s HTML improves the way your page displays in search results by enhancing the descriptions beneath the page title.
This product schema markup displays a book rating and publication date.
This schema markup—called a local business schema markup—shows a company’s location, number, address, and open hours.
How schema markup helps SEO
Schema markups are the result of a group effort by Bing, Yahoo, and Google to help provide the information needed to understand content online and provide the best search engine results. You need a good schema markup to rank well on all the major search engines.
Schema provides context to otherwise ambiguous webpages. With schema users can see your business’ main service, it’s location, your pricing and many other useful bits of information. Schema doesn’t just tell potential clients what your website says, but also what it means. The user can see details of your page at a glance which help them decide whether to click through or move on to a more relevant one.
When done correctly, good schema markups can lower your bounce rate and help you get more clicks to your website. Good schema markups can increase your click-through rate by 30%. Moreover, a recent study showed that websites that use schema rank four positions higher in search results than websites that don’t. And since less than one-third of Google results contain schema, it represents a good opportunity to get ahead of the curve and rank higher than competitors.
Different schema types and categories
Schema structured data can be used to markup websites on everything from events to people to products. Here is a non-exhaustive list of categories schema markup can be used with:
- Businesses and organizations
The four most common types of schema markup are organization, person, local businesses, and products & offer schema markup.
1. Organization Schema Markup
Schema markup for an organization includes the official logo, contact information, location and links to social media profiles. These types of markups are useful in giving users a basic rundown of your company. Because contact information is included, it makes it easier for customers to contact you right away.
2. Person Market Schema Markup
A Person Market Schema Markup helps users quickly find out basic information about public figures. This schema’s information includes facts like birthdays, addresses, education, and family members.
3. Local Business Schema Markup
Every small business needs a Local Business Schema Markup. Local Business Markups helps potential clients find out information about your business’ address, hours of operation and contact information.
4. Product & Offer Schema Markup
If you are selling a product or service, the Product & Offer Schema Markup is best to fit your business needs. The Product Markup requires only the name of the item to be included in the rich snippet. The Offer Markup requires the name, price, and currency to be included in the enhanced description.
Product and Offer Schema Markups helps you stand out from the crowd of competitors. If your competitors aren’t using markups, users can quickly see your offer pricing and assess your value. It also allows users to quickly compare prices between two competitors if they are selling the same product.
A full list of categories available to use with schema can be found on schema.org.
Setting up schema markups
Although schema structured data markups are coding language, it is not that difficult to add to your website. Google has a tool to help you generate the code.
- Go to Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper.
- Select the data type for the page you plan to markup.
- Paste in the URL of the page and click ‘Start Tagging’
- Highlight and label the type of elements to be marked up.
- Continue adding markup items.
Let the drop-down list of items be your guide, and continue to highlight and label other elements on your website. You don’t have to label every item, just get the ones that are required. But the more items you tag the better.
- Create the HTML.
- Use theStructured Data Testing Tool to find out what your page will look like with the markup.
- Finally, add the generated schema markup to your web page.
A 2017 study by Bing and Catalyst reported about 17% of businesses used schema markup. If you aren’t already, it’s time to jump on the schema bandwagon and implemented it as soon as possible. With schema markup you’ll have a competitive advantage over your competitors and gaining brand recognition. Creating good schema markup can be a challenge, especially if you lack technical expertise. Talk to an expert at Thrive Internet Marketing today to get started.