The first and foremost priority of a website owner should be to check whether search engines are properly functioning to index the content of his site or not. In order to ensure this, it is essential to set up the site as per the best practices of SEO. If a website is based on WordPress, you are already into a good start.
WordPress is a platform which is SEO-friendly by default. It is equipped with features like content hierarchy and permalinks that eases search engines to digest. By utilizing plugins or themes, you can, in fact, expand the capabilities of SEO. To conclude, WordPress allows you to develop a customized strategy for SEO complementing your specific needs.
In this blog, we will highlight that specific section of SEO which is extremely vital. No more suspense! Let’s unveil that secret now! Schema markup also termed as Microdata or Structured Data if added to the site can improve your SEO ranks and CTR thereby making your website more user-friendly. Let’s begin by exploring the benefits Schema markup is going to offer you if used into your WordPress website.
Describing Schema: The Melting Pot of Content & Context
Search engines have a tendency to crawl through the content of your site and bring it into a particular context. Through all these years, we have depended upon the traditional HTML tags so as to narrate a story. Headings, titles, keywords and meta descriptions all have had their individual roles in search engine listings and rankings of a website. For example, suppose your home page is titled “Web Designer India”, any search engine is capable of assuming what your site is all about. However, such things aren’t always that apparent. This is because different phrases and words may have numerous contexts and meanings. Without understanding this kind of information, your website can be missed out when it comes to search relevancy. This is exactly where Schema markup comes to play.
Developed in part by search behemoths Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, and Yandex, Schema includes a behind-the-scenes “vocabulary” to our content. Attaching this markup to the specific parts of a website will provide search engines with a higher level of context.
This context will help you understand when your website is listed on a search engine results page (SERP), and it will do that with more relevance in terms of subject matter. Take it simply, Schema markup helps search engines understand exactly what your site is all about.
What is more is that, as search engines have access to Schema markup on your website, they’ll be able to provide extra information in listings. That delivers to both add convenience for the audience while bringing more traffic your way.
Now when we know Schema’s goal, let’s peep into the fact that how it works in reality.
Searching with Importance
Whenever you search for anything on a search engine, you are likely to get the best information that Schema markup provides. Let us explain it clearly.
Whenever you searching for anything, Google magically shows us the result exactly what we are searching for. Whenever we are searching for the best review for a movie or any shop in town, and it’s quite helpful when information appears right on 1 click, and Schema markup is what makes it possible.
By using the Review markup, Google gets to know what was being reviewed and exactly what the rating was for and who reviewed it.
While the example above uses entry-level HTML tags, notice the extra features that have been added in:
itemscope itemtype=http://schema.org/Review: Denotes what type of content this is (in this case, a review). The schema has attributes for many types of content. This makes a search engine to display a listing in a more highlighted manner (like when someone is looking for reviews).
itemprop=”itemReviewed” itemscope itemtype=http://schema.org/Movie: Besides movies, lots of different content can be reviewed. Television books, music, games, and shows all come to the mind. So it’s crucial to let search engines know exactly what type of review this is.
itemprop=”name”: The name of what is being reviewed.
itemprop=”author”: Provides the name of the author.
Cracking down the code above, we can see how a rating comes together:
itemprop=”reviewing” itemscope itemtype=http://schema.org/Rating: Tells search engines that we’re going to display a review rating.
itemprop=”ratingValue” content=”4.0″: Shows the exact rating for “Return of the Jedi”.
itemprop=”worstRating” content=”0.0″: The lowest possible rating.
itemprop=”bestRating” content=”4.0″: The highest possible rating.
Using Schema With WordPress
WordPress also involves adding Schema markup to your site which is a highly-customizable process. A point which you may not realize is that both the theme and plugin you are using could be already included in this feature. Some structured data into your content is included in SEO and breadcrumb navigation plugins.
So before adding markup, it’s better to find out what is already available in your content. That will show you where you are standing right now so you can develop your further planning.
Assess Your Situation with Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool
Google makes it easy to check your site with their Structured Data Testing Tool. To analyze your content, enter your site’s URL or paste in a code snippet.
Add Schema Markup via a Plugin
Once you checked initial testing and know what type of structure data your site has produced and now it’s time to enhance things even further. Adding the free Schema plugin is the simplest way to do that. In fact, the various website uses this plugin on all their blog posts and knowledge base posts. But, this plugin supports only custom post types.
It promotes some easy features such as enabling different schema types on a per-category or per-post type basis. It will sync well with the available plug-in like Yoast to gain benefits of the markup you are utilizing.
This plugin uses JSON-LD (a lightweight Linked Data format), which is what is suggested by Google, and also used by Bing.
It has over 20,000 active installs with a 4.5 out of 5-star rating. The developer is also very active in updating it when changes take place in SERPs. Important to note that review markup is not included with the core Schema plugin. However, Schema Review companion plugin include this features for free.
Now, to install the plugin from within WordPress, navigate over to Plugins > Add New and search for “Schema”.
Once the plugin is installed and activated, head to Schema > Settings to start upgrading your site with markup. Fill in the basic thing like the location of your about, contact page and a logo. Then crawl to throw the article, knowledge graph and search outcome to assure the best setup. This trigger alone will help in attaching some required markup to your website.
Next, you’ll want to inspect Schema > Types. Here you can add custom markup to each and every post type- or specific post if you wish. By Default, you will find entries for post and pages. You can check out the plugin documentation for some more advanced features.
Alternative Schema Markup Plugins
There are alternative plugins and many other ways to get things done. You can search for other schema markup plugins and use it.
- WP SEO Structured Data Schema
- All In One Schema Rich Snippets
- WPSSO Schema JSON-LD Markup
- Markup (JSON-LD) structured in schema.org
Additional Notes on Schema
Honesty is the first rule of using schema markup. Don’t be misguided, untruthful or try to give false rating or review. Google is very clear about what it expects and don’t try to be better than Google. Fill in every box, and be clear and short. Never put multiple things on one page which may look messy so create a separate page for each and every product, item, person etc.
Adding schema markup doesn’t give you guarantee that it will show up. For example, to show on stars for review on Google it may take months or might not be shown up at all. But it is always recommended you to add schema markup because this is only the best way to achieve success in SERPs and help in getting CTR.
With Google, make sure that the schema markup and structured data are working properly in both the mobile and desktop version of your site.
A Solid start With Room to Grow
Installing the Schema plugin to my web page needs a normal setup to start showcasing some basic info. My blog was optimized within 10 minutes of markup for information like author, title, and image and publish date and other pages are also optimized within my site. It’s a great beginning and I can further pull things to meet the needs of my own specific content.
This plugin can benefit any type of website present on the web. There are many users who search for this. So, this is very important for businesses with physical appearance. Presenting significant data directly on a search engine’s listing page can be the difference between generating a sale or not.
Take a time and think how you can use Schema markup to further increase your search engine listings. Your little effort can make a huge difference.
Thanks for going through this blog, if you feel we could improve anywhere or have any suggestions for our future blogs, let us know in the comment section.