- Schema markup is microdata that algorithms gather from your website to navigate pages and rank your content.
- Schema markup is important because it helps algorithms decide whether your content is untrustworthy or not valuable to an audience. Poor content will cause it to be ranked lower, but easy-to-read relevant content will show up higher in the SERPs.
- If you don’t incorporate schema markup into your website, you risk falling behind your competition in the search results.
Having your content at the top of the search results can make a big difference in the number of people who see your website. One in four people click on the first organic search result. Needless to say, refining your SEO strategy using website schema can have fantastic returns. But what is schema markup?
Schema markup is a valuable tool that often gets overlooked. It can help your content rank in searches and boost your SEO.
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What is Schema Markup?
It’s probably easy for you to read an article and understand what it means, but things are a bit more complicated for search engines. That’s where schema comes in.
Schema markup is a kind of microdata that’s present on your website and helps algorithms navigate pages and rank your content. There are multiple kinds of schema data and information that search engines use. For example, there is organization schema markup that tells search engines how to present store-front information like logos, location, and contact information.
By knowing what website schema language is and how to improve it, you can help your website rank better, and you can choose aspects of how your site appears to potential customers.
What is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s the primary way to get your content to rank on the search engine results page (SERP). If you want to drive more traffic to your site, SEO is the way to go.
The most infamous SEO tactic is using keywords. The idea is simply to use certain words that your audience might search, thus making your page easier for people to find. However, SEO is always changing and fairly complex, so there are many ways to improve it.
At its core, SEO involves using various tactics to help search algorithms find and list your website or business. Inbound marketing, high-quality content, backlinking, and page interaction are just a few ways to improve your business’ visibility. Schema markup and other structured data are also valuable but often overlooked tools to improve SEO.
Before looking at schema as a way to improve SEO, be sure to look at a few of the other tactics. In particular, look at optimized keywords, site navigation, and providing high-quality content.
Schema is a way for algorithms to understand your content better, but it won’t be particularly helpful if you don’t have good content for the search engines to notice and rank. Likewise, the end goal of SEO and schema is to get more clicks and, in turn, more sales. Readers are more likely to interact with and appreciate content that is valuable to them.
Technically, adding microdata to your HTML doesn’t directly give you an SEO boost, but it does make your content easier to find. Let’s take a closer look at what schema actually does and why it matters.
What Schema Markup Does
Schema adds microdata to HTML that makes the page easier for machines to read. It helps search engines know how to read and display your content while simultaneously telling the algorithms what to index.
Essentially, adding schema markup language to a page says, “Hey search engine, this content is a blog. That text right there is a product and its review.” This is possible because schema.org and similar sites can be used to add microdata tags right into the page’s structure.
If you have an e-commerce business and list products on your site, schema can help algorithms understand where and what that product is. Then they can add a rich result with information about the product, and the resulting search output may include information that might not otherwise appear, like ratings and a description. The big bonus is that rich results also give your site more space on the SERP, so people will be more likely to click on your URL.
Schema does not directly contribute to your website’s ranking. However, it helps search engines maneuver your site and generate rich results, which, in turn, earns you more clicks.
Why Is Using Schema Important
When search engines can more easily crawl and index content that contains schema, they are better able to display it. In fact, it’s estimated that pages with schema rank several positions higher than those without it.
While this might seem unimportant at first glance, search engines are the gatekeepers of the internet. If their algorithms decide your content is untrustworthy or not valuable to their audience, it will get ranked lower. On the other hand, if they think your content is easy to maneuver and read, they will display it higher in the results. That’s where schema and other SEO tactics come in.
Having schema markup language embedded in your site’s HTML doesn’t make the content on your page look different to humans, but it makes a world of difference to machines. In fact, it is so impactful that competing companies like Google and Bing collaborate to make schema markup language available through schema.org.
Because algorithms can easily search and index content that has been embedded with structured data, they are more likely to trust it and give it better “real estate” in search results. Let’s take a quick look at different kinds of schema and how they can benefit your e-commerce business.
Types of Schema Markup
Schema is a type of structured data that algorithms can “read.” In general, structured data is quantitative information that is organized in a standardized order. This makes data and information easy for both algorithms and people to interact with or use.
A simple example of structured data is a phone number. While there are variations from country to country, phone numbers have a structure that makes them easy to read and use.
Schema works in a similar way. There are variations, but, in general, algorithms can recognize and utilize it.
Here are some common types of schema that are useful for e-commerce:
- Local business schema markup tells the algorithm that your page has a physical location and displays details like the address, phone number, and website.
- Product schema markup helps Google know where products are listed on the page and allows them to appear in the SERP with a rich snippet.
- Event schema markup displays a local event or sale and includes the basic details.
- Article schema markup gives the search engine information on pages that include a blog post or other lengthy content and allows them to directly appear in the SERP.
- Review schema markup might work separately or in addition to a product snippet to display a ranking on the SERP.
FAQ schema is also popular but is complicated to add to your pages since it requires quite a bit of microdata. An FAQ rich result allows searchers to automatically see related questions that they might have. Using this format also gives your content a lot more real estate which usually results in more clicks and customers.
There are currently 797 types of Schema, so there are plenty of ways to add metadata to your page. For a full list, check out schema.org. If you have questions about what types your page could benefit from most, contact us for more information.
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What are the Benefits of Schema Markup?
As we’ve mentioned before, schema doesn’t directly affect SEO ranking. However, it has several benefits. The primary benefit of website schema is the opportunity for your site to have more real estate on a search result page through rich results.
Here are some of the main benefits you can expect from adding schema to your site:
- It can result in rich or featured results
- Get more space on the SERP
- Potentially improve your site’s SERP ranking
- Let more people see your call to action
- Direct visibility of your products, events, or storefront
- Greater brand awareness and visibility
While you might think that the benefits are limited to mainstream search engines like Google, it can actually improve your visibility on sites like Pinterest. You can boost your visibility on almost any software or site by using schema. In fact, schema.org reports that over 10 million websites use their markup system.
All that said, website schema doesn’t magically make the content of your website better. Schema is ultimately an advanced SEO tool, and it can help build your audience, but it might not be able to make up for bad overall SEO.
Using Microdata to Improve Your Content Visibility
Using structured data to improve your code is surprisingly easy since some schema sites have a structure you can copy. That said, you will need basic HTML knowledge to add schema SEO directly into your code. This is because using schema allows algorithms to give high-quality results to their audience by adding microdata directly into the page’s HTML. While there are a few systems that can automatically add schema for you, make sure you trust any person or system that has access to your website’s code.
Schema.org is the most popular option for adding schema markup language to content and webpages. The site is fairly straightforward, but there is a bit of a learning curve. The process will get much faster once you get used to adding schema to your content.
There are a few alternatives to schema.org, including Open Graph and Twitter Card Makeup. Even Google’s Search Console has a data highlighter tool that can help Google understand and read your content. Some alternatives, like Google’s Search Console, don’t actually add structured data to the page but instead show the algorithm what information to focus on.
Adding the schema will initially take some time since there is a sharp learning curve. If you have basic coding knowledge, you should be able to get the hang of it. However, you will need to be patient with yourself.
Once the code has been successfully added, you will also need to validate your content at a site like schema.org. This will evaluate your structured data and tell you how the page performs.
You should also test your code to make sure it is working. A tool like Google’s rich results test will see if the schema you added worked.
This process can be rewarding, but it can also be very difficult. If you aren’t a fan of coding or don’t have the time, consider hiring a professional. Win At Ecommerce can help you make your content visible. Contact us so we can help you succeed with SEO and grow your business.
Tips for Boosting Your SEO by Using Schema Markup
By adding basic website schema language to your page, you can quickly boost your ranking on SERPs. Adding schema markup is a fairly advanced SEO tool that can’t compensate for bad content or bad schema SEO practices. If you use schema on content you plagiarized (or self-plagiarized), your content still won’t rank well. Likewise, if you put out content that isn’t valuable to readers, you will still have a high bounce rate.
To boost your SEO by using schema, start with a foundation of good content. Then use a marketing or keyword strategy and make your site easy to navigate. Lead generation, lead magnets, and email marketing might also play into your SEO and marketing strategy. Finally, add microdata to help algorithms crawl and index your pages.
Help Search Engines Find Your Content By Using Schema
Search engines and schema both exist to serve people. The goal is to segment information and help searchers find the information they are looking for. Because of that, schema and other SEO tactics help search engines and customers find your business.
Since schema requires a bit of coding knowledge, there is a steep learning curve initially. But, once you get the hang of adding microdata to your pages, it can make a big difference to your site’s ranking.
While schema might not be the best place to start if you are new to SEO, it is a valuable tool that shouldn’t be overlooked. If you are new to e-commerce, you should use a keyword plan and high-quality content as a foundation for good SEO. Then you can use advanced tools, like schema, to refine and grow your strategy.