When creating any content for your website, don’t just think of the people who will read it.
Think of the spiders.
It can sometimes be difficult for search engines to crawl your content and discover the topics you’re trying to present.
Schema markup is one tool you can use to help clarify your content to these spiders. It includes the markup for SERPs that explains to crawlers what your data is all about.
While you might remember “schema” from Psychology 101, this schema markup is referring to the code that’s entered into websites to make it more easily discovered by search engines.
Often used in combination with SEO strategies, this is a very powerful tool that can easily boost your search engine results through a logical presentation of important data.
How Schema Markup Works
Schema markup comes from a joint venture between Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft and Yandex.
They understand that content is constantly being posted with multiple layers. The content that’s being posted on your site has many properties that are visible, as well as some that are not—but these properties must be added in order to gain visibility.
Content may include a title, header, sub-header, author name and body of the content. Within that copy, many words may exist that have multiple meanings.
For example, say you’re talking about seals in a piece of content.
Now, while the article may obviously be referring to the animal, a search engine may stumble while considering the multiple interpretations of what that word means.
This is where schema markup comes in, giving a semantic interpretation of such words to provide clarification to the search engine.
Now you may write about a seal and not worry about Google falsely believing that the content is about an old 14th-century way of closing letters, a way to stop leaks or the famed pop singer.
This is done by getting into the HTML code of your content and adding specific codes that will interrupt the meaning of the text. Fortunately, you don’t need to do extensive code work to maximize this.
It was created to allow users to really get the most out of anything they post on their site while still not having to learn advanced coding.
Why You Must Use Schema Markup
Diving into your HTML and adding these codes gives your content a more viable way of being seen. There’s now a focus in the content that will be picked up by search engines.
This is the “Microdata” side of search engines that many just don’t know about. Crawlers thrive off it, and it’s a win-win situation for all parties involved.
The user finds the content they want quicker, your website has been seen and the search engine provided the results that were needed. Simply put, the more you mark up your content, the more you will reap the benefits of it.
You’ll start to see higher SERP rankings, increased organic search traffic and more backlinks. To keep an eye on how much progress you make with this Schema markup strategy here, watch your Monitor Backlinks dashboard.
In Monitor Backlinks, you’ll easily be able to track all of these metrics: SERP rankings, organic traffic and backlinks.
If you don’t already have a Monitor Backlinks account, then you can take advantage of the 30-day free trial before starting this schema markup strategy. Who knows how much progress you’ll see in just 30 days?
How to Use Schema Markup to Improve SERP Rankings
Google provides users with an easy way to tag basic information that would be used for searches and the rich snippets section of a search entry.
Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper is a simple way to get into the habit of marking pages to enhance their SERP. Take a look at the examples below.
Right away, we see multiple kinds of content that can be appropriately tagged. Since this is a blog, the appropriate starting point would be with Articles. From there, paste the link and begin tagging.
Here, we see the blog post as-is. On the right, we see that the name of the post and other information that can be filled in.
Filling in this information is simple and quick. Simply highlight the element and then a drop-down menu will appear where you enter it into the appropriate field.
Specifications include name, author, publishing date, images and more. All of which help search engine crawlers better understand and index your content.
In today’s content-centric digital universe, people often skim copy. This leads to copy that’s often divided by sections in order to break up content for readers.
Instead of labeling the entire wall of text the Article body, you can break up the tags by labeling headings as article section. The end result should look something like this.
Note that there are now two sections with different copy in the Article body entry as well as the top missing the Article section.
As I said before, the more markups that you commit to the better your content will do on search result pages. With microdata, the better and more focused bits of code will yield the better results.
Once completed, you may simply download the code or copy it to paste into your site.
You’ll note yellow markers to the side of the screen that give the location of the newly-added code. Clicking on the highlighted section also gives you the location in the code as well.
Once you have this code, head over to Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to see how it will appear on the search engine. Paste the code into the Code Snippet section and then run the test. If there are any errors, go back to the article and correct the information.
This is a simple way to add a boost to any of your content. Though to take full advantage of schema markup, one must venture into it much deeper. There are many specific codes that can be semantically linked to certain words so that search engines may find your content.
But for now, small steps will lead to big leaps and the same is for getting into the habit of marking up content with the appropriate tags.
Schema markup is unique in that it enables users to utilize valuable coding through the service—even without expert experience.
Search engines want to find the most relevant content to provide back the best results.
Help them accomplish that through clarified content meaning through schema markup.