Use Data Structure And Boost Your Site’s SERP Visibility

What is schema?

Most SEO agencies will tell you how to rank higher on the Google search engine result page. They will tell you how to fix the technical parts of your website such as loading speed, responsive designs, migration to a faster server, etc. These agencies will also advise adding more content and promoting it to third-party websites to gain backlinks.

Well, those things are true that if done properly, it will gain your website a better ranking in the organic search listing but did you know there’s another tactic that will enhance your site’s visibility in search engine result pages? Yes, there is and that’s by utilizing structured data.

What is structured data and how does it work?

Before we dive deeper in this topic we need first to address the elephant in the room. Will this method boost my site’s existing ranking and beat the competition? Sorry to disappoint but the answer is “No.” Google already said that data structure is not part of their ranking factors. Structured data will not help your site in the organic search result ranking but it’ll have a chance to be featured in one of Google’s search features.

These search features like the carousel, videos, or top stories will contain these Google’s rich results where the data shown in SERP are pulled from the information found in the structured data markup of a webpage. You will find them ahead of the usual organic search result.

To demonstrate, here is an example. If you are searching for a Pavlova recipe Google will give you this more informative and attractive search result.

What is structured data and how does it work?

As you can see from the screenshot, rich results are more attractive compared to the standard blue link that you usually see from the traditional Google SERP. Apart from the page title and description, Google will also display ratings, time to prepare the food, and that stunning image that can potentially increase your site’s click-through rate.

Apart from giving your webpages a chance to land on those search features, the other thing that structured data does is help search bots better understand what the content of the webpage is about. The more we reduce the guess-work activities of these web crawlers, the faster they can identify the relevancy of your pages and then match it to the users’ search queries.

What are the available data structure formats?

According to an organization called, there are three formats that they support. The mentioned online community is founded by Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, and Yandex with a mission to create, maintain, and promote schemas for structured data on the world wide web.

There are three data structure formats under and these are the following:

JSON-LD (or Javascript Object Notation Linked Data) helps search bots to better understand a webpage’s content by providing them with machine-readable structured data. Using this method, the important information of the page and its elements are interlinked and properly formatted. This encoding type is the recommended format by Google.

Here is an example of a JSON-LD format.

<script type=”application/ld+json”>


  “@context”: “”,

  “@type”: “Recipe”,

  “author”: “John Smith”,

  “cookTime”: “PT1H”,

  “datePublished”: “2009-05-08”,

  “description”: “This classic banana bread recipe comes from my mom — the walnuts add a nice texture and flavor to the banana bread.”,

  “image”: “bananabread.jpg”,

  “recipeIngredient”: [

    “3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed”,

    “1 egg”,

    “3/4 cup of sugar”


  “interactionStatistic”: {

    “@type”: “InteractionCounter”,

    “interactionType”: “”,

    “userInteractionCount”: “140”


  “name”: “Mom’s World Famous Banana Bread”,

  “nutrition”: {

    “@type”: “NutritionInformation”,

    “calories”: “240 calories”,

    “fatContent”: “9 grams fat”


  “prepTime”: “PT15M”,

  “recipeInstructions”: “Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix in the ingredients in a bowl. Add the flour last. Pour the mixture into a loaf pan and bake for one hour.”,

  “recipeYield”: “1 loaf”,

  “suitableForDiet”: “”



Microdata is a new added feature in HTML5 and its usage is to markup visible elements using structured data. Below is an example of how Microdata format is used in an HTML document. In the past, we usually saw this encoding type in Blogger or sometimes called as Blogspot site which is powered by Google.

<div itemscope itemtype=””>

  <span itemprop=”name”>Mom’s World Famous Banana Bread</span>

  By <span itemprop=”author”>John Smith</span>,

  <meta itemprop=”datePublished” content=”2009-05-08″>May 8, 2009

  <img itemprop=”image” src=”bananabread.jpg”

       alt=”Banana bread on a plate” />

  <span itemprop=”description”>This classic banana bread recipe comes

  from my mom — the walnuts add a nice texture and flavor to the banana


  Prep Time: <meta itemprop=”prepTime” content=”PT15M”>15 minutes

  Cook time: <meta itemprop=”cookTime” content=”PT1H”>1 hour

  Yield: <span itemprop=”recipeYield”>1 loaf</span>

  Tags: <link itemprop=”suitableForDiet” href=”” />Low fat

  <div itemprop=”nutrition”

    itemscope itemtype=””>

    Nutrition facts:

    <span itemprop=”calories”>240 calories</span>,

    <span itemprop=”fatContent”>9 grams fat</span>



  – <span itemprop=”recipeIngredient”>3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed</span>

  – <span itemprop=”recipeIngredient”>1 egg</span>

  – <span itemprop=”recipeIngredient”>3/4 cup of sugar</span>



  <span itemprop=”recipeInstructions”>

  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix in the ingredients in a bowl. Add

  the flour last. Pour the mixture into a loaf pan and bake for one hour.



  <div itemprop=”interactionStatistic” itemscope itemtype=””>

    <meta itemprop=”interactionType” content=”” />

    <meta itemprop=”userInteractionCount” content=”140″ />


  From Janel, May 5 — thank you, great recipe!



RDFa (or Resource Description Framework in Attributes) is similar to Microdata where it utilizes HTML tag attributes to identify the properties you want to include in structured data. Usually, the markup can be found both in the head and body section of the HTML page. Below is the sample RDFa markup for recipes.

<div vocab=”” typeof=”Recipe”>

  <span property=”name”>Mom’s World Famous Banana Bread</span>

  By <span property=”author”>John Smith</span>,

  <meta property=”datePublished” content=”2009-05-08″>May 8, 2009

  <img property=”image” src=”bananabread.jpg”

    alt=”Banana bread on a plate” />

  <span property=”description”>This classic banana bread recipe comes

  from my mom — the walnuts add a nice texture and flavor to the banana


  Prep Time: <meta property=”prepTime” content=”PT15M”>15 minutes

  Cook time: <meta property=”cookTime” content=”PT1H”>1 hour

  Yield: <span property=”recipeYield”>1 loaf</span>

  Tags: <link property=”suitableForDiet” href=”” />Low Fat

  <div property=”nutrition” typeof=”NutritionInformation”>

    Nutrition facts:

    <span property=”calories”>240 calories</span>,

    <span property=”fatContent”>9 grams fat</span>



  – <span property=”recipeIngredient”>3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed</span>

  – <span property=”recipeIngredient”>1 egg</span>

  – <span property=”recipeIngredient”>3/4 cup of sugar</span>



  <span property=”recipeInstructions”>

  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix in the ingredients in a bowl. Add

  the flour last. Pour the mixture into a loaf pan and bake for one hour.



  <div property=”interactionStatistic” typeof=”InteractionCounter”>

    <meta property=”interactionType” content=”” />

    <meta property=”userInteractionCount” content=”140″ />


  From Janel, May 5 — thank you, great recipe!



What are the benefits of using structured data?

Before you burn your precious time tweaking your website and integrating this feature, it is best for you to know what are the benefits you are going to get. Here are some of the advantages and the reasons why you do it.

What are the popular usages of structured data types?

According to, the current list of these data markup types is at 797 along with 1453 Properties 14 Datatypes 86 Enumerations, and 462 Enumeration members. In our future posts, we will dissect each of those technical details but for now, we will just focus on the well-known. As per Google’s documentation, they have featured 32 different types of schema markups. As an SEO practitioner, this is a hint from the search engine giant that they will be utilizing those backend codes to aid their rich results.

Here is a list of the popular usage of schema markups.

How to implement structured data to your site?

By now you can see the potential of these schema markups on boosting your site’s search visibility on Google’s search engine result page. You may now wonder how to implement it on your web asset and start exposing those codes to search crawlers the next time they visit your site. Do not worry, you have us to help you with the setup.

Step 1 – First thing you have to do is to identify what schema markup you want to use. As shown above there are 32 well-known use cases of structured data. Make sure you have the correct one so that you can help Google know what your page is about. For example, if the page is about “How to make a cake,” then you have to use the Recipe schema markup, if you wanted to promote a local barber shop then you have to use the Local Business, and so on.

Step 2 – After identifying the perfect type of schema for your site’s page, the next thing you need to do is to review Google’s structured data guidelines. Failing to meet the requirement will lessen your website’s chance to land on one of Google’s rich results. Make sure that the information you add to structured data must be also visible in the user interface. For example, if you listed a number of products on the schema markup; these contents must be also available on the front end when your site’s visitors are browsing your site.

Step 3 – Choose what format you want to use for your structured data. There are three format types of schema markup that you can choose from, and the most popular and recommended by Google is the JSON-LD format.

Step 4 – This is now the fun part, adding your desired schema on your web pages.

Option 1 – If you’re using CMS like WordPress, Magento, Shopify, Woocommerce, and others; then there is good news for you because there is a list of plugins that you can use to easily add these markups. You do not need to have advanced programming skills to accomplish this task as the plugins will automatically set it up for you.

Option 2 – You can utilize different free online structured data generators. Here are some of the popular sites that you can use.

Option 3 – If you have advanced programming skills in web development or have web developers in-house, then we recommend this method. You may implement an advanced schema where you can link different types of structured data types and then feed them to search crawlers. If you are using JSON-LD as your choice of format, then you place these markups at the HEAD section of your web page.

Step 5 – Now that you have added those schemas on your site’s pages then it is time to validate whether the implementation is correct. There are two tools that you can use and we suggest using both as there are times the other tool will say “passed” yet the other one would find errors. These tools are from and Google.

Here are the schema validator tools.

Step 6 – Finally, monitor your result by visiting the Enhancements section in Google Search Console. It may take a few days, to several weeks, until Google picks up the schema markups you have added to your site.


As twitted by one of Google’s representative, it was confirmed that structured data is not part of their search ranking algorithm. Yet, it has an indirect effect on your site’s SERP position due to the potential increase in click-through rate, which is a known ranking factor used by Google according to several SEO practitioners.

From the three different structured data types format, Google recommends using JSON-LD when implementing schema markup on your website. Once the configuration is successfully applied to your web property, you can monitor its performance in Google Search Console.

Please feel free to provide your thoughts and comments to this article based on your experience.
Reach out if you are looking for support with implementing the right SEO practices for your business.
Contact Number: +61 4 0404 1227