What is Structured Data?

Written by Christina on January 19, 2016

Structured data markup is used for search engines to create rich snippets. Schema markup helps search engines to determine the important information on a page. It defines the relationship between different types of data on the page.

This data has replaced meta tags to format the data crawled by Google. It does not affect ranking but can have significant effects on the success of your listing as it provides additional information to catch the attention of the visitor.

You can use the Structured Data Testing tool set up by Google to see if your site currently has any structured data and also to see if any additions you make are registering correctly.

Step-By-Step Setup

  1. Find your content type. Google supports many types of additional information to show including products, reviews, events and even track listing for albums.
  2. Start marking up content. Don’t have a developer? No problem. Google has its own tool to help website owners create structured data, see it here. This allows you to use the URL of the page to highlight the data you want to include and then provide you with the code that needs to be added in to the page.
  3. That’s inputted… what next? Now you wait for Google to come along and crawl your site in its next round. If it isn’t showing, it’s worth having a look at the Structured Data support section on Google as it may be a case that you’re missing the guidelines for this. Don’t forget to take a look at the testing tool too!

A great place to learn a bit more about all of this and the vocabularies used to support structured data across many applications is the Schema.org website. The ‘Getting Started’ area of the site provides a very comprehensive guide of how to get started and how to integrate (especially if you are not using the Structured Data support tool from Google) the markup best.