When creating any content for your website, 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, by including markup for SERP that explains to crawlers what your data means.
While you remember “schema” in Psychology 101, this schema markup is referring to the code that is entered into websites making it more easily discovered by search engines. Often used in correspondence with SEO, 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 and Microsoft. They understand that content is constantly being posted with multiple layers. The content that being posted on your site has many properties that are visible, as well as some that are not – but 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 talking about a seal. Now, while the article may be referring to the animal, a search engine has multiple interpretations as to 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 believing that 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 do not need to do extensive code work to maximize the use of it. 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 broad 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 is now a focus in the content that will be picked up by search engines. This is the “Microdata” side of search engines that many do not know about. Crawlers thrive off it and it is 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 markup your content, the more you will reap the benefits from it.
How To Use Schema Markup
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, and 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 dropdown menu will appear where you enter it to the appropriate field.
Specifications include name, author, publishing date, images and more. All 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 is 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 we said before, the more markups that you commit to the better your content will do on search result pages. With mircodata, 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 will 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.