CGain Upscaled

Schema Markup & Rich Snippets – Do they help SEO?

Schema code on website pages is a much-overlooked aspect of best-practice SEO – or Search Engine Optimisation. SEO helps your website to be seen nearer the top of Google and Bing searches for relevant search keyphrases.

Google & Bing advise the use of Schema code so that their algorithms can correctly and more easily process the data from each page on your website. Specific Schema code exists for Local Businesses, Hotels, Restaurants, Tourist Attractions, News Articles, Reviews, Job Listings, Events, Movies, Recipes, Books, Music, FAQ’s and many more. See the full list we regularly use at the bottom of this article.

Schema is Underused

Despite the advice from the search engines, only a small percentage of websites have had Schema implemented. An investigation by ACM Queue put the figure at 31.3%, while a study by Bing and Catalyst found that just 17% of marketers use Schema.org markup.

Either way, even the highest estimate of Schema.org adoption still comes in at less than a third of websites.

This gives us a great opportunity to gain traction on the competition.

Event Schema, for example, will detail the location, time & date, entry fee and other vital information of your event. You could include all this information on a new page or post on your website, but search engine algorithms may not correctly recognise it. By adding the correct Schema data, they are left in no doubt as to exactly what information is on the page.

Local Business Schema will detail your business name, contact information, address, opening hours and more.

You can easily check if your website has Schema Code by using Google’s free Structured Data Testing Tool.

Is Schema Important For SEO?

Using Schema encourages search engines to pull through rich snippets such as opening hours, reviews, product data, FAQ’s, location, menus and more. When displayed, these make your listing look more attractive and have been shown to encourage CTR, or Click-Through-Rate.

Schema is also increasingly important for the growing trend of voice search, acting as a signpost that points digital assistants such as Siri, Alexa and the rest towards the information that will correctly answer a user’s voice query. Voice queries depend heavily on implied context, and Schema markup can help give that context to an otherwise ambiguous page of text.

Why Don’t More Web Designers Use Schema?

Implementing Schema can be challenging. Some plugins for websites are available, but not all are free of errors – which can actually damage your SEO, especially the free ones.

When we searched for the top 21 web designers on Google for our area, using the most popular search phrase ‘web design’ (we are No. 1 of course!), we found the following…

  • 13 other local web design companies have not yet implemented any Schema Markup.
  • 4 have attempted to implement Schema Markup but are showing errors in it.
  • 3 (as well as ourselves) have implemented it correctly.

The fact that many web designers do not fully understand Schema, or how to implement it, gives those that do (and their clients) a significant advantage.

Types of Schema Markup

Hera are some Schema Types relevant to business websites in the UK…

Event

An event happening at a certain time and location, such as an open day, rally, concert, lecture, or festival. Ticketing information may be added via the offers property. Repeated events may be structured as separate Event objects. More specific Schemas under ‘Events’ include BusinessEvent, ComedyEvent, MusicEvent, SportsEvent etc.

FAQPage

This Schema presents data as one or more ‘Frequently Asked Questions’. This is particularly useful for SEO. See our post about FAQ Schema here.

Review

A review of an item such as a restaurant, movie, book, product or store. The Schema will detail the number of reviews and an average score (usually 1-5).

LocalBusiness

A particular physical business or branch of an organisation. Examples of LocalBusiness include a restaurant, a particular branch of a restaurant chain, a branch of a bank, a medical practice, a club, a bowling alley, etc. Data can include location, contact details, opening hours etc. A string of subsets of this Schema exist which can help individual types of business. Here are some which we have used on client sites…

Service

Similar to LocalBusiness, indeed some Schemas exist in both main categories. This covers delivery services, print services etc.

Menu

A structured representation of food or drink items available from a FoodEstablishment.

Offer

An offer on a service or product.

Video

Super-important for any type of business, because for certain search queries video content always ranks text.

Our Websites Have Schema Markup Built-In

As part of our standard SEO infrastructure, all our new websites have SEO Schema Markup built-in – on every page and post.

Adding Schema To your Website

  • You can ask your web developer to do it – an average cost will be from £250.
  • We can do it for just £50, but you will need to host your website with us. Not all hosting packages have the technical infrastructure that ours does (or the speeds).