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Introduction to Schema Markup

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Introduction to Schema Markup

You may have seen the rich snippet on Google SERPs; that is where everybody wants to be featured. One of the recent advancements in the SEO industry is Schema markup, often known as Schema. The Schema and other structured markup formats have been in place for many years. However, it was not known to many people and not that extensively used. Let’s read about ‘Schema Markup’ today.

What is Schema Markup?

Schema markup is a code (semantic vocabulary) that can be added to your website’s HTML, making it easier for search engines to understand your webpage. This will, in turn, help search engines to show more relevant and informative results to users on a SERP when they key-in a query.

What is Schema.org?

Schema.org is a co-operative endeavor between major search engines like Google, Bing, Yandex, and Yahoo! to standardize structured markup. The standardization of the structured markup was done to help search engines provide more relevant results to the users for their search query.

How Does Schema Markup work?

Just like any other markup formats, a schema is added to the content of your webpage to specify what it is and how it should be interpreted by search engines when displayed on a SERP.

Let’s try to understand this with a real-time scenario:

Webmasters are familiar with the HTML tags that can be used on a webpage. These HTML tags only tell the browsers how to display the information added within the tags. For example, <h1>Apple</h1> will display the text “Apple” in a heading 1 format. However, it does not provide any data about what the text means. Here, “Apple” could refer to a fruit, or it could refer to the brand ‘Apple’ whose electronic products are popular among people. This can cause ambiguity among search engines while displaying the search results on the SERP. You can resolve this by adding ‘Organization Schema’ to the webpage of Apple Inc., telling Google bots that the page is about a company or an organization and not a fruit. 

Schema markup combined with the RankBrain algorithm and Google’s BERT update will help you find the most relevant answer on SERPs for your search query. 

What is the Importance of Schema Markup?

Below are a few of the major advantages of adding schema to your webpages:

  • Increased brand visibility within the knowledge graph.
  • Offers a quick preview of the content on SERPs
  • Can increase Click-Through-Rate (CTR)

What are the Different Formats of the Schema Markup?

There are three different formats of schema markups that are popularly used today. They are listed below:

  • JSON-LD: Google declared JSON-LD (JavaScript Objective Notation for Linked Data) as the preferred format of the Schema markup in 2015. It need not be present in the <body> of a page but can be placed in a <script> tag anywhere on the page. JSON-LD is hidden, making it easier for webmasters to implement it without affecting the rendering of the webpage.
  • Microdata: Microdata is a set of tags that are added directly to the HTML code of your page. This can get tricky if you are someone who is not familiar with programming.
  • RDFa: RDFa (Resource Description Framework in Attributes) is similar to Microdata and is an extension of HTML5, which uses tags inline with the existing HTML. RDFa is used to markup metadata within the webpage.

Is Schema Markup a Rankings Factor?

Adding Schema Markup will help crawlers understand your page better and rank it accordingly on the SERP. However, Google’s John Mueller, in one of his Webmaster’s hangout sessions, indicated that it is not a ranking factor yet.

How to Add Schema Markup on a Webpage?

Now let’s learn how to add schema markup on a webpage. Follow these simple steps mentioned to successfully add a schema markup

Google Structured Data Markup Helper

  • Select the Type of Data you plan to Markup

Select the schema which you wish to add to the target page. For the below example I am going to use “Article” as it is the most common type of content.

  • Insert the URL of the webpage that you want to markup

Insert the URL of the webpage where you want to insert the schema as shown below and then, click on “start tagging.”

Note: If you only have an HTML code Webpage, you can paste that by selecting HTML instead of URL

Structured Data Markup HelperOnce you click on “start tagging”, Tag Data page will be loaded as seen in the below screenshot

Structured Data Markup

  • Highlight & select the type of items you want to markup.

Start Tagging the item to respective section on your page. For example, for name item, you can highlight the title of the article page and select “name” in the drop down.

Structured Data MarkupAfter selecting the desired data item from the drop down, you will see the same in the right-hand side panel. For example – select “name,” from the dropdown & you will see the tool adds it to the “Data Items” on the right side.

Structured Data Markup

  • Continue adding markup items

Use the list of data items as a guide & highlight the other items of your article which you want to add in the schema. Don’t worry if you are not able to tag all the items, just add how much you can and leave rest of them as blank

  • Create HTML

Once you’re done tagging all the items you require, click “create HTML” on top right corner

Create HTMLYou will see the JSON-LD code which is generated of your webpage with all the fields you tagged in the earlier page.Google Structured Data Markup Helper

  • Add Schema Markup to your webpage

Now, download the automatically generated JSON-LD code via the download button & copy-paste it into your CMS or source code.

Structured Data Markup DownloadWhen you will click “Finish,” you will be presented with the “Next Steps.”

Structured Data Markup Download Finish

Structured Data Markup Tool Next StepsUse the Structured Data Testing Tool to find out how your webpage will look with the added markup.

Structured Data Testing Tool

What are some of the Important Schemas?

There are numerous schema markups available that one can use depending on the type of content. Some most commonly used schemas are listed below:

  • Organization Schema

Organization Schema Markup clarifies the introduction of a company, including its official logo, address, contact info, short description about the organization, reviews & social profiles.

Organization Schema Markup

  • Breadcrumb Schema

Breadcrumb Schema Markup lists the path links that lead to the current page. Breadcrumb is not seen about the Title on SERP page

Breadcrumb Schema Markup

  • Event Schema

Event Schema Markup provides information for the scheduled events. It shows information such as date, location & price for webinars, concerts, lectures, etc.

Event Schema Markup

  • Recipe Schema

Recipe Schema markup is used by the recipe website pages to show as a rich snippet.

Recipe Schema Markup

  • People/Person Schema

The People/Person Schema Markup is used to show information of an individual, such as name, birthday, address, education & family members.

People/Person Schema Markup

  • Local Schema

This Local Schema Markup helps local company to rank on local listing. For example, below screenshot shows local listing for query “grocery stores near me”

Local Schema Markup

  • Review/Rating Schema

Review/Rating Schema Markup helps a service provider to build trust among the people on SERPs even before visiting the page & making an online purchase for services or products.

Review/Rating Schema Markup

  • Video Schema

Google Schema Markup makes it easier for search engines to crawl & index videos on the website. It also indicates search engines about the content of a webpage containing a video.

Video Schema Markup

  • FAQ Schema

FAQ (Frequently Asked Question) Schema Markup contains a list of questions and answers to a particular topic. Webpages marked-up with FAQ schemas will be eligible to have a rich result on SERP.

FAQ Schema Markup

We’ll talk about them individually in our upcoming blogs.

What Did We Learn About Schema Markup?

Google does not promise to push your rank higher on SERPs if you include Schema on your page. However, adding schema markup can boost your chances to be featured in the ‘rich snippet’, which in turn can increase your Click-Through-Rate (CTR). Implementing Schema Markup in the right way can put you ahead of your competitors in the race for more web traffic.

Let us know what Schema Markup you are using and how it has helped. 

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2 comments

Jasmine Shaikh March 31, 2020 - 5:56 pm

Amazing and a very informative content

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Infidigit April 2, 2020 - 5:33 am

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