Even though it may sound like “gobbledygook” to people unfamiliar with the subject, schema markup can be thought of as a method of describing the content in the website to the search engines in a manner that they can comprehend it. Typically, this is achieved by adding code consisting of pre-defined semantic vocabulary tags to the HTML of the website. The added code can be read easily by the search engines while remaining invisible to users. The schema markup is something that is not specific to any particular search engine but can be used by all search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, and more. The semantic vocabulary assists the search engines to understand information about the contents of the website by helping them to crawl and index the websites in a better way. While HTML can be ready perfectly well by the search engines, the incorporation of schema markup helps them to process information that is more complex better.
Why Should You Use Schema at All?
Once the schema markup is applied to the website, it can create a more exhaustive description, which is also popularly referred to as a rich snippet appearing in the search results. This may include elements like prices, reviews, ratings, or other vital information that the web content manager desires to highlight. Even though, as a process, it is simple, it acts to complement search engine optimization methods for ranking high on search engine results pages for the target keyword. Schema markup can easily be one of the best tools for increasing the volume and quality of traffic generated by SEO to your website by search engine results. Schema markup adds the content’s background context to enable the search engine to recognize what the content refers. The inclusion of schema markup highlights information about the website content, which enables it to stand out and compel people to visit it on the website.
How Does Schema Markup Act?
While search engines have advanced a lot regarding their capabilities of recognizing content, it has still not progressed to the extent that they can understand it fully. Google, for example, uses schema markup to understand the contents of a webpage. The schema acts as the logic marking the page information and classifies the content of the page. In other words, the markup provides a specific logic and language that enables the search engine to crawl and index the webpage content thoroughly. It also instructs the search algorithm on how to figure out the treatment of the content. Pages that are powered by schema markup look distinctly different from those that just have a conventional Meta description. The difference in the appearance also makes it easier for users to spot the site among the clutter and obtain the desired information faster.
For example, typing in “Schindler’s List Movie” in the Google search box will demonstrate how the schema markup looks in action and the benefits, the technique delivers. The important elements of the film are highlighted and the user also gets insights into the general information about the movie together with its background as well as how most people have reacted to it. A rating is also present under the link, which can be, however, a double-edged sword, because while a high rating will enthuse people to click on the link and find out more, a low rating may deter most users from taking any further action to learn more. Therefore, using the schema judiciously is advisable. If you are using WordPress, it does not matter even if you are not comfortable with HTML since, you can take the advantage of applying the schema markup simply by using a free or a paid plug-in, observes a digital marketing consultant of BigDropInc.com, a leading full-service digital web development, and marketing agency.
Different Schema Markup Types
In addition to the above schema markup example described above, there are quite a few other options that users may not normally be aware of but are very likely to have seen often in the SERPs while searching for information. Some of the more common types of schema markup:
It is very natural for people to try to find out what other people think before they purchase a product or a service online. Some of the most common examples are the reviews or ratings of books and films, hotels and restaurants, or even car repairing services. By viewing the ratings or reviews as displayed by the schema directly in the SERPs, the user is often able to make up his mind whether to pursue a web link or not by clicking on the result.
This kind of schema markup can be used by web developers to place more focus on the profile of the organization, including the name and logo, location, and contact information and a glimpse of what the company is all about so that users can decide whether it is likely to fulfil their search intent.
Person Market Schema
Quite similar to the Organization Schema, the Person Market Schema displays the basic information of an individual like the name, date of birth, education, achievements, family, and other vital information that helps users to get an idea of the person.
Video Schema assists search engines to index the videos appearing on individual websites. This makes these videos discoverable when users search specifically for videos on a particular subject using Google search or other search engines. The results will also include videos hosted on YouTube. According to SearchEngine Land, the required properties include the name, description, thumbnail URL, and the date of uploading.
The Event Schema Markup, as the name suggests, serves to provide additional information regarding scheduled events. This includes details like the date of the event, location, as well as the price of the ticket or pass. This information, when displayed upfront in the search engine results page permits users to find out events of their interest and then decide whether to click on the URL to find out more.
The Recipe Schema Markup is especially very useful for cooking websites because it allows recipes to be displayed directly in the search engine results as a rich snippet. Each recipe element can be labelled in the schema, which permits users to search for recipes by ingredient, time for cooking, etc. The display of the schema also assists users to evaluate the recipe result on the results page itself so that they can decide to click on the URL and know more about it or explore some other result.
Local Business Schema
This Local Business Schema Markup can help users to find the location of local businesses as well as other relevant information such as their street addresses, business hours, contact information, etc. It is a great method for businesses that have physical stores or offices to generate local traffic that results in higher conversions. For example, if you need to find the ATM of a particular bank, the Local Business Schema can help you locate the nearest one very easily.
Product & Offer Schema
The Product and Offer Schema Markup is structured to deliver information about products like the sizes or capacities in which it is available, their prices, and the status of their availability. This kind of schema markup is popular with online stores selling specific products or services. They can help to make the products distinctive so that they stand out from the clutter of similar products offered by competitors who are not making use of the schema markup. The advantage of using Product and Offer Schema Markup is that it facilitates easy comparison and leads to faster conversions. It should be kept in mind that while the Product Schema Markup needs only the name of the product as an input, the Offer Schema Markup additionally requires information about the price and the currency.
This is a schema markup that is used to highlight the links of the path leading up to the page the user is viewing. The purpose of this markup is to help users to see where the page they are seeing is located within the website. The benefits of this schema type are that it reduces the bounce rate.
Article Schema Markup facilitates the process by which search engines can understand the content of headlines, a featured image, a video or even the time of publishing that makes it easier for users to understand which web content is more recent. Different kinds of articles like articles, blogs, news, technology, etc. are catered to by different types of schema markups.
Apart from the ones described above, there are many more different types of schema markups, a full list of which can be found on schema.org. As you must have noticed from the description above, schema markups are nothing but structured data that defines what the contents of a website are and how they should be categorized and viewed on the search engine results pages. Schema markups help the search engines to crawl and index the contents of the websites better, preview important content on the results page, trigger clicks on the URL for traffic generation to the website and improve the SEO page ranking.
Author bio –
Barrack Diego has worked as an editor and writer for more than 10 years. He enjoys mentoring young and upcoming writers. To find out more about web design, SEO, Social Media, WordPress, Marketing, Business, UI/UX visit Bigdropinc.com