Launched a beautiful website, that looks and functions great? Optimized copy for SEO and took care of meta tags? Now, let’s learn how to step up your SEO game and implement Schema Markup on the website. Hello, my Name is Sujay and I’m the founder of Schema Pro, the best plugin for Schema Markup WordPress. In this guide, I’ll teach you everything you need to know about Schema Markup. This might be the most complete Schema guide you might find anywhere on the Internet!
- What is Schema.org and Structured Data?
- How does Schema.org benefit SEO?
- Structured data gives rich results
- Rich Snippets
- Rich Cards
- Knowledge Graph
- Featured Snippets
- Types of Schema Markups
- How to Implement Schema Markups on your website?
- Things to remember while implementing Schema Markups
What is Structured Data?
Search engine robots index websites and analyze the content. No matter, how smart they are getting, they are after all machines. Companies like Google can not rely on just algorithms to display important information in search results. For example, Google can’t for sure say “902 839 7864” is a phone number that they found on the website. But, if there was a hint website owner could leave for Google and other search engines, that would make Google’s job easier, wouldn’t it? This is where Structured data walks in. Structured data is the method of communicating with search engine robots informing them about what the content on page actually means. Schema.org is just a type of structured data that is followed by all search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing and Yandex. Adding Schema Markup helps search engines understand your website better.
How does Schema Markup benefit SEO?
There are two main SEO benefits of implementing Schema.org on your website.
- Makes Website More SEO Friendly
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) basically means making your website search engine friendly so that it is easily found when users type in a relevant query. Schema.org Structured data lets you feed detailed information for search engine crawlers to understand your website better. A website that is understood by search engines has a greater chance to rank higher and be found when a user searches for something similar.
- Appear in Rich Search Results!
Implementing Schema Markup can get websites highlighted in search results.
See how these research results stand out? These are Rich Search Results. And that’s the outcome of Implementing Schema Markup.
Types of Rich Results
In the previous section we learned about how it matters to display a well-explained, detailed snippet in search engines. There are various ways in which results can be displayed. Let’s take a look at them.
Rich snippets are exactly what the phrase translates into – “Rich + Snippets”. Rich indicates enhanced, and snippets means an extract. So, enhanced extracts of websites in search results is what rich snippets are and these are what can be obtained by implementing proper schema markups.
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Rich cards are the card like results seen on mobile. Rich cards are often seen on mobile when you search for products, local restaurants, courses, movies, recipes and more. These rich cards are often displayed in a touch-friendly swipable manner that makes them look more attractive.
This image gives you a clear view of what rich cards look like. Take a look at the products in the cards.
Have you seen the big block of information that appears on the right side of search results? This contains images, location, contact information, description, social media profiles. This information block is called a knowledge graph.
Featured Snippets do not have a direct connection with structured data. They refer to the actual content present on the website. These do not contain additional information like the rich snippets. But, they answer the queries asked by users.
Here is an example of how a featured snippet looks. One thing I would like to point out here is that it is not just the structured data that should be good, but also the content on your entire website. You need to have clear and understandable content that can answer user queries like the one above.
Types of Schema Markup
If you take a look at the Schema.org website, you’ll find a number of schema types. I’ll list some of the most popular ones below.
- Job Posting
- Local Business or Organizations
How to Implementing Schema Markups on a WordPress website
Choose WordPress theme has integrated Schema Markup
Common schemas like the header, footer, navigation, etc are are essential for search engines to understand the structure of your website. And they are very easy to implement. All you need to do is pick a theme that has integrated Schema Markup. Surprisingly, very few themes come with Schema Markup integrated code. If you’re looking for a well coded, flexible, Schema Integrated WordPress theme, take a look at Astra. It’s a free theme available on the WordPress repository. Other themes I can recommend are Child themes on Genesis Framework.
Markup other data with plugins
Schema like header, footer, navigation, etc. are common for all websites. So WordPress themes can take care of them. However for other specific date, you will need to use a plugin. For example:
- For local business; you will need a markup for business days, hours, category, etc.
- For a website that writes about recipes, movies, books or events, that type of Schema will need to be added.
Plugins like Schema Pro will automatically markup the existing data you have on the website. Additionally, it adds extra fields in the WordPress backend for necessary pages where you can input important information required for Schema implementation. Visit the Schema Pro website to learn more. There are some free plugins on WordPress Repository as well.
Other Important Notes
Integrating Schema Markup Does Not Guarantee Rich Snippets!
Schema Markup alone does not guaranteed Rich Snippet. Search engines look at various other factors such as authority, quality, history, relevancy and many other signals as well. Implementing Schema markups is just one of the factor that increases chances of being displayed better.
It can take a while for a Rich Snippet to Appear.
Don’t expect immediate results! It can take months to see a rich snippet appear in search results.
You still need to take care of Schema even if you have installed Yoast SEO.
The Yoast SEO plugin takes care of the following things:
- It adds RDFa markup to Breadcrumbs.
- It adds a Schema markup for your homepage.
- With the Video SEO plugin, you can add a Video schema.
- With a Local SEO plugin, you can have a markup for your address and working hours.
All this with some basic SEO settings that it is made for. You can still take the help of another plugin in case you wish to add some more relevant schema markups on your website. Read more here.
You still need to take care of Schema even if your theme has it integrated.
Themes only take care of common Schema like header, footer, navigation, etc. You can still step up and implement other specific markup and get better results.
Some plugins come with Schema Markup Integrated.
Some plugins come integrated with Schema Markups to ease your work. For example, WooCommerce adds Schema for products. The Events Calendar plugin adds Schema for events and so on. If you’re using a plugin that adds content, please check with the developer of the plugin if it supports Schema. If not, you may request them.
Does your Website have Schema Markup already?
Google has provided a tool which can help you test Schema on any website. You can analyze what kind of Schema any website has implemented here.
Implement Schema Wisely!
Like everything in SEO, don’t over do it. Do it carefully and genuinely.
Very few websites implement Schema. It’s a work a little bit of work but the result are for lifetime. Implement Schema and stand out from competition!