Adding structured data (scheme markup) to your website can increase your chances of having an enhanced SERP listing, being featured in a rich answer, or (in the case of branded searches) having a knowledge panel appear. Schema markup is also becoming increasingly important in the age of voice search, acting as a signpost that points digital assistants towards the information that will correctly answer a user’s voice query.
As more users are using Google as ‘an answer engine’ and wanting to find information quickly, isn’t it time you considered implementing schema markup for your website in 2018?
First things first…
What is schema markup?
Schema markup is code (semantic vocabulary) that you put on your website to help the search engines return more informative results for users. This means that when users are searching for something, the results will appear directly in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), rather than the user having to click into a website to find their answer. Schema markup works to assist search engines in understanding website content, allowing them to display that information in a way that is helpful for users.
Here’s an example of a local business that has markup on its blog page. The SERP entry looks like this:
Why is it so important?
Schema markup helps your website rank better for all kinds of content types. There is data markup for:
- Local businesses
- TV episodes and ratings
- Book Reviews
- Software Applications
There are hundreds of markup types, so if you have any type of data on your website, there’s a good chance that it’s going to have an associated itemscope and itemtype.
How to implement schema markup
Go to the Google Structured Data helper: https://www.google.com/webmasters/markup-helper/
First enter the type of data you want to markup from the items above. Then paste the specific URL of the page.
Next start tagging the data by highlighting elements within the page and selecting from the drop down menu:
When I select “Name,” the tool adds it to “Data Items” in the right pane.
Once you have finished marking up all the data you want on the page, click ‘Create HMTL’. This provides you with HTML of your page with the relevant microdata inserted in the spots that you selected.
Next, go into your CMS and add the highlighted snippets in the appropriate spots. Find the yellow markers on the scrollbar to find the schema markup code. Alternatively, you could download the automatically-generated HTML file, and copy/paste it into your CMS or source code.
To test your markup is working, use the Structured Data Testing Tool to find out what your page will look like in SERPS.
Your next steps
You don’t have to be a programmer to add markup to your content. Schema.org is an excellent resource for getting started. However, to get the most value from schema markup and ensure it really influences your search engine visibility, talk to one of our SEO Consultants.