Join Brad Batesole for an in-depth discussion in this video A primer on structured data, part of Learning SEO Tools.
- [Instructor] If you've been around SEO, you've likely heard terms such as structure data markup, rich snippets, rich media, schema.org, microdata, and so on. But, what the heck does it all mean? Well, let's start at the top. Structured data markup is the standard way to tell engines like Google what the content on your site is. This markup helps Google understand if content is a breadcrumb, an address to a local business, a map to a place, a review on a product, or even a sale price on an item.
To see an example of this let's do a Google search for Jurassic World. This is a new movie that was just released. Here, I can see that Google has brought in some showtimes. On the right hand side we can see some information about the movie. And as I scroll down the page, we can see the organic search results. Now, you'll notice that some of these search results contain a rating. This is a rich snippet and it comes to us because these sources both IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes are using structured data to tell Google about that review.
Let's click on this Rotten Tomatoes link and take a closer look at how they're using these tags. Here, on the name of the movie I can right click and choose Inspect Element. And here on the right hand side, we can look at the tags that are being used. So here, I see the Span Item Props name. And then Jurassic World. And this is letting me know that this is part of a structured data tag. If I scroll up here at the top of the page I can see that there's an Item Type, schema.org forward slash movie.
What's happening is this structured data tag about the movie is the parent to the actual item prop which is the name of the movie. If I right click on this rating and choose Inspect Element I'm going to jump to that rating. And if I scroll up I can see here an item prop for aggregate rating along with an item type for scehma.org forward slash aggregate rating. This is an example of a structured data tag. When Google understands the content on your site better it can enhance the search results.
Now the way structured data works is by applying a tag similar to the ones that we just saw around content on your site. This tag uses what's known as vocabulary to tell Google what it's looking at. This vocabulary is standardized and comes to us through a site known as schema dot org. So you might have a vocabulary called Music Event. And you'll have tag element on your site with that vocabulary. And now Google's going to know that it's looking at a music event.
Here on schema.org you can choose schemas in the navigation in the upper right hand corner. And if you'd like, you can look at a full list of all of the schemas by selecting the option and scrolling through. Anytime you select on a particular schema it'll show you the properties that are available for that particular vocabulary. Now certain high level categories, such as Movie are allowed to have attributes such as name and review. But a movie cannot have an address attributed to it, for example. You'll embed this vocabulary into your site using one of three formats.
Now I'm not going into the tehnical know how required to introduce this within your site. But you can read more about it at developers.google.com forward slash structured hyphen data. To summarize, structured data is the term to indicate adding vocabulary to your site through the use of a particular format such as microdata. Google then uses that information to create rich snippets in its search results. Structured data is incredibly valuable and you'll want to take advantage of it.
You can either add it programmatically or using a helper tool provided by Google. We took a look at that helper tool in the Google search console section. In the next movie, we're going to take a look at how to test the actual implementation of structured data on your site.
- Setting SEO goals
- Configuring Google Search Console
- Evaluating the Google index
- Using PageSpeed Insights
- Interpreting results and leveraging reports
- Using the Screaming Frog SEO Spider
- Generating a site map
- Getting started with Keyword Planner
- Multiplying keyword lists
- Structuring data
- Using SEMrush
- Conducting keyword research