Marketers can use the structured data to their advantage. In this session, presenters went over some of the structured data types you may want to begin using right now.
Elisabeth Osmeloski (@elisabethos), Director of Audience Development, Third Door Media, Inc.
Jason White (@sonray), Director of SEO, DragonSearch
Mike Arnesen (@mike_arnesen), SEO Team Manager, SwellPath
Justin Briggs (@justinrbriggs), Sr. Manager, Organic Marketing, Getty Images
Samuel Edwards (@samuel_quincy), Online Media Strategist, Tenthwave Digital
Samuel was the first speaker. He began with giving a brief overview of structured data markup defining structured data to be information organized in a universally understandable way. It adheres to predetermined set of rules which define data type and their internal relationship.
Structured data within web pages is used by search engines to:
- Refine search results
- Filter with better accuracy
- Improve the way results are displayed
Why structured data is important?
Search engines have limited understanding of web content. They find it hard to display relevant results for certain terms if they are unable to understand the context.
Search engines aren’t always able to determine the difference between “seal” musician, animal and approval. When you do a search for ‘seal’, they all appear in the results.
TL;DR structured data helps search engines understand content. They would then display it in a useful, relevant way.
Visibility is a great advantage of structured data.
Search engines use information stored within structured data to generate rich snippets. It would provide the user detailed information relating to their specific queries.
Rich snippets are known to have an impact on click-through rates. Some websites have reported a 30% increase in CTR after implementation.
Using structured data to create rich snippets
Marked up review information is used by Google to understand and present the web content. Review information such as ratings and descriptions help users identify good content.The main topic has to be about a specific product/service excluding the adult industry. If the markup has a single review, the reviewer’s name must be legitimate.
Product rich snippets
Merchants can provide search engines structured data for aggregate rating, total reviews, item price, item availability and essentially endless qualities.
Events rich snippets
You can markup day, dates, name of event, venue of event, city of event, markup performer, doorTime, startDate, location.
Job listings rich snippets
You can mark up for listings, company, job title, location. You may also add hiring organization, base salary, industryand more.
Restaurants rich snippets
Basic mark ups are ratings, number of reviews and price range. You can also add address, rating value, rating count.
Application rich snippets
You can markup image, rating, number of reviews, offer and prices. OS, reviews, screenshot of app can be added as well. You must incorporate at least 2 of the following properties: aggregate rating, offer, OS or software application category.
Recipe rich snippets
Ratings, total reviews, calories, minutes to cook and many more.
Structured data markup for all applicable pages
You need to implement structured data markup for all applicable pages of the website if you don’t want it lag behind.
Tenthwave analyzed traffic to DuncanHines.com
Tenthwave analyzed to top 263 organic search terms that were driving traffic from Google to DuncanHines.com.
They found that at least one result in each of the 263 queries had some form of rich snippet on page one. It included images, reviews, prep times and calories.
One of the queries, on average 3/5 results had implemented some sort of mark up.
Tenthwave looked through the item properties applicable to DuncanHines.com using http://schema.org/Recipe.
Site wide implementation
They implemented a template containing HTML markup, the schema tags along with the placeholders into which the server injects the actual recipe data.
Structured data testing tools was used to validate a number of user generated recipes.
Markup was implemented in mid February 2014.
Google driven organic search traffic increased by 35.07% from January 2014 (prior) to April 2014 (post).YoY increase was 93.46%.
A few highly trafficked user generated recipes saw increases that were significantly higher than the average.
Observing increase in ranking
Despite Google’s stand that adding markup has no effect on ranking, they found that within 2 weeks of implementing Schema markup, 75% of the 263 terms analyzed in the initial test saw improvement in search results.
The average listing for DuncanHines.com had improved by 2.42 positions.
For validation and testing tools
Using the tools
Samuel terms GWT an important tool for marketers. Use it to validate the code to be implemented. Use the testing tool as well.Use Fetch as Google to crawl and detect errors. You can then fix the errors.
Next speaker was Justin Briggs who talked about increasing mobile visibility with structured data.
How mobile changed search?
Mobile has made way for conversational search and entities. It also has access to location, email and application. Search can now execute functions and get into email and apps. It can also play songs and schedule invites.
Rather than typing, users can speak directly into search. It is aware of hotel reservation ability. It takes the hotel as an entity (known location).
App indexing (Android apps):
Search engines know the apps installed and those frequently used. When you open a result from a SERP, it may open the page in your preferred app. HuffPo app, for instance.
Creating Indexable Apps
Android provides an app URL format which allows setting up deep linking inside of an application. Supporting multiple types of schemes, it has host path that takes you into the app. AndroidManifest.xml is the control file for app deep linking.
When an app is crawlable and indexable, it has to be attached to the web pages. Use JSON-LD, a lightweight linking data structure, for the purpose.
You can add App Indexing API sending user behavior back to Google.
Knowledge Graph is the stage when Google understands relationships and actions which can be applied to different types of entities.
It is a world when you tell Google through mobile to drive to Grandma’s house. The system would open a map app and take control of the car. An app would play the song you tell it to play.
Email data in search results
Schema can be implemented in emails allowing structured data in emails to appear in search results.
Schema in email: Structured data in emails can appear in search results. Justin gave an example. If you send yourself an email with details about a San Francisco tip, opening up Google Now will give you weather for the city.
Mike Arneson, the last speaker, talked about more ways to implement and track structured data.
Analytics and SEO
Analytics talked about how Analytics can assist in SEO. Use analytics to identify prime targets for improvement. You need to have a plan to track the ROI of structured data on your site.
Google Tag Manager
Google TagManager can help see the impact of structured data. It is a way to deliver tags on your site. You have container code for Google Tag Manager and you have to go through tag manager interface to push changes.
Audit and Discovery
You may have a blog, case studies, or events. Find the content types you can implement structured data on.
Build templates and guides that can be used for all content types.
Decide which events on the website matter to you. Now go to Google Tag Manager to create a tag name, type and web property ID for Google Analytics. Select track type event, putting in values recorded in GA such as category and action. Select firing rules.
You have to keep track of each grouping. When you have the tracking and baseline info coming into GA, dynamic content grouping in GTM has to be set up.
You need to create a goal to track performance
Keep a watch on the crawl looking for the errors.
Site search box
Site search box is a new feature of Google. It is handy for sites with a lot of popularity and navigational searches. It sends the user to a site: search for that website. You need to create a custom HTML tag in Google Tag Manager to get Google to handoff search.25 Smart Examples Of Structured Data You Can Use Now: #SMX New York 2014, Day2!,