Why Schema Is The Most Vital SEO Tool For 2019
If you’re serious about SEO these days, you should definitely invest the time to both learn about and understand why Schema.org structured data is vital to successful SEO campaigns.
In a nutshell, Schema is a form of microdata that helps search engines better understand the topical relevance of a web-page as well as other key factors to assist with indexing and ranking.
The Schema.org markup was developed in collaboration by Google, Bing, Yandex and Yahoo to make it collectively easier for them to understand the Internet (which actually means making their algorithms better so they can rank websites more appropriately and drive ad revenue).
Regardless of the motivations behind the markup, one thing is for sure – Schema will help your website rank better if you implement it properly – which should motivate you to use it.
Even though that’s the case, one of the biggest drawbacks of Schema markup adoption among webmasters is that it is complex to implement if you don’t use a prepackaged plugin for it.
Sounds nice, but what does Schema implementation do for my website
As I mentioned in the introduction, Schema allows you to provide more information to search engines about the subject matter and key information for your website. At a basic level, you can use Schema markup to show the following to search spiders when they visit your site:
- Information about your website (organization name and URL)
- Breadcrumbs (navigation paths to help understand structure and page hierarchy)
- Type of content on a given page (blog posts, articles, reviews, recipes, etc)
- Publishing information (article names, authors, published date, last updated dates)
- User generated content (reviews, rating starts, aggregate feedback and so on)
Let’s take a look at some random examples from the Google search results to give you an idea why it’s important and can affect your rankings and clicks to your site:
User Rating Schema:
As you can see from the examples, using Schema can make your web pages appear in a much more prominent manner within the search results. This leads to more clicks to your websites, more customers (and some say better rankings from click through rates).
In addition to the above, there are dozens more types of schema that can be used on your web pages (full list from the official site) depending what your website is about.
The main headache: implementing Schema.org
As I mentioned earlier in the article, the biggest challenge with Schema (similar to Google AMP) is that implementation from someone not technically inclined can be challenging.
You should also know that Schema can be integrate in two ways, either visually on a web page, or in embedded within the code using a language called JSON-LD.
The simplest approach to using Schema is to use WordPress as your CMS, and buy the WP Schema Pro plugin which will automatically implement everything via JSON-LD in a 100% fully compliant manner, allowing for customization by Schema type.
If you aren’t up for buying the plugin but still use WordPress to host your website, there are a number of other review plugins that can be used (just go to plugins > add new > and search “schema rating stars”, “schema breadcrumbs” or whatever you’re looking for).
The main disadvantage with these plugins is that they usually only do one particular Schema (like reviews) and they are shown on the front-end of the site (useful for reviews, not so much for organizational information).
The last option for implementation of is course adding this code manually to your website. Personally I think this is a very illogical way to do it, but if it’s the route you want to go I encourage you to read the documentation on the official site.
Overall, no matter what way you implement it, I really believe that implementing Schema across your website is 100% vital to good SEO in 2019. As the the search engines continue getting better and better, you can be sure many of your competitors will end up implementing Schema on their sites at some point, so you might as well get ahead of the curve.