If you’ve ever done any SEO, then chances are you’ve heard of structured data markup, but what is it really?
Structured data is a way for you to provide more insight about the content on your website to web crawlers. There are a lot of different types of crawlers out there, but where structured data comes in most handy is for search crawlers like Google and Bing.
When it comes to organic search, the more context you can provide crawlers the better. Not only that, but structured data can also be used to enhance the appearance of your search results to appeal more to your potential audience. Some of the smallest changes can go a long way to improving your click-through rates from search.
Some examples of structured data in action:
Structured Data Basics
Though you can markup lots of different types of content, there are some basics that should be used on every website, regardless of its vertical. Markup such as organization, navigation and breadcrumbs should all be considered at the very least; and for eCommerce websites, product markup is essential.
We are Living in a Mobile-first World
And I am a mobile-first girl ☺. Since Google recently announced its mobile-first mentality, it is more important than ever to put your best mobile foot forward and structured data can help with that.
Google is very big on providing the best user experience possible, especially when it comes to mobile users. Using structured data can help get the right content in front of the right people at the right time to ensure that their experience is a positive one. That, in turn, will elevate the EAT (expertise, authority, trustworthiness) score of your website and make it more likely that additional content will be picked up and shared by Google.
Pick Me, Pick Me!
Essentially every piece of content living on your site can be marked up in some way to send signals to search engines. It’s kind of like that know-it-all from your 9th grade Spanish class who always raised her hand first to answer questions…it might seem like she was trying too hard, but the teacher noticed and called on her often.
Search engines can be finicky with how they select pages for their search results. The more information you can give them about your awesome content, the more likely they will be to share it with the world (when relevant to a given search query, of course).
These Are Not the Structured Data You Are Looking For
Structured data is easy to get wrong, so you have to make sure you are using the correct format for the information you are trying to share. Schema.org is a collection of the different types of structured data and has been the preferred reference for search engines over the years. Google is also introducing cool new things like rich cards to enhance the user experience on mobile.
Stay ahead of your competition and jump on the structured data bandwagon. It’s not going anywhere anytime soon and has quickly become an important part of any SEO strategy. Need help? Contact us to let us take the hard part off your hands.
About Nicole Castelblanco (Alumni)
Nicole Castelblanco served as the Manager, Research & Analytics at Liquid Interactive. She led the department in the planning, implementation and management of online lead generation programs which include paid and organic search, display, social media, email marketing and analytics.