What is Schema Markup, and what does it have to do with SEO? Schema Markup is a new, powerful method of optimization in SEO. Once you learn how to utilize schema markup on your web pages, you can boost your website and your brand in the search engine result pages (SERPs).
What is Schema Markup?
Schema Markup ( also known as structured data) is the language of search engines. It is a way to structure website data that helps search engines understand and process the information on a page. It is a semantic vocabulary (schema.org) created by Google, Yahoo, Bing, and Yandex in 2011 as a global standard for understanding web content. Schema Markup can be used in a variety of code types including RDFa, Microdata and JSON-LD. To translate the geek speak: Using schema markup helps define and describe what your page is to search engines.
Here’s an example of a local search SERP using markup:
Image from developers.google.com
The schema markup tells the SERP to display a local business’s address, hours, and even lists an option for booking appointments. This kind of markup on your page could mean the difference between a customer choosing your brand or your competitors’.
Adding schema markup to your page helps provide meaning to your data.
Enjoy Rich Results
Businesses who use schema markup can experience rich results that range from event listings, review information, product information, information panels (like the Google image shown above), and more.
Google has also created Local Business Listings and Place Actions. The listing and action can be specific for local businesses and can include the following:
- Business hours
- Multiple departments
- Restaurant lists
- Job postings
It may require some time to set it up, but the return can be significant. The more listings and actions you define on a page, the better.
Improve Your Ranking
Google now uses schema markup in ranking. The more description you add about your business or services, the easier it is for search engines to parse and display in search results. What does this mean for your business? It can lead to each of the following:
- Higher Click Through Rate
- Increased Time On Page
- Increase in leads or purchases
- Decrease in bounce rate
We all know that ranking is important, and with voice search on the rise it has become increasingly so. People are no longer typing in searches, they are simply asking their devices to provide top results. Amazon’s Echo and Google Home are quickly becoming staple fixtures in our daily lives, and Alexa will not be able to find your site without the proper markups.
How Do I Use Schema Markup?
You’ll want to optimize your homepage first, so that it can be used as a reference for your other pages (Contact, Services, Products, etc.). Always choose the most specific type when defining your page.
Here is a list of local business types and a guide for local business schema markup.
It’s time to bring your website into 2018, take advantage of schema markup to leverage your business in a sea of SERPs.