Search engines can learn what a website is about even without the use of schema, but effective usage of Schema markup helps search engines understand a website’s content more easily and efficiently. Schema markup is also important for SEO because it makes websites eligible for rich results, which stand out more on search engine results pages than “regular” results, and have more click-through potential because of it.
Schema markup (also called semantic vocabulary or microdata) provides additional context to your website’s elements and content. Using globally-standardized language by Schema.org, currently consisting of nearly 800 types of schema markup types, you can quite literally point to individual pieces of content or text on your site and tell search engines directly what they represent.
Examples of using schema markup include:
- In a recipe, you can point out what the ingredients are or how long the cooking time is.
- On an FAQ page, you can point out what the question is and which paragraph provides the direct answer.
- On product pages with reviews, you can point out what the review text is and what the rating you’ve received is.
- You can label your organization’s name, service area, and even alumni.
Schema markup can be seen as a shortcut of sorts for search engines to learn what your website is really about, which is especially important in the case of small, new, and/or niche industries, whose terminology may be unfamiliar (if it’s new to customers, it’s probably also new to search engine bots).
Here’s an example of rich results for the keyword “recipe for glazed donuts.” The top grid showcases recipe rich results specifically. The first result beneath is an enhanced search result with ratings and a thumbnail image.
In comparison, here is a regular, non-enhanced result for the same query:
Which of these would most draw your attention?
Contact Fire&Spark if you need tips on how you can elevate your website using various different types of Schema Markup.