January 29th, 2018
Lack of Schema tagging
Now, this one is the middle ground of the three issues in terms of complexity. Schema has been around for quite some time now (check out our post from 2016 on for a brief introduction), but usage of it is still rather low because it can be confusing to implement.
In essence, Schema (also know as Rich Snippets and Markup) is a special type of website coding that can be added to various sections and aspects of a website to help crawlers better understand each page. For example, on a product page you can tag the product name, price, image, description and reviews. Then, this information will be passed through to Google (and other crawlers), who may use this information in search result listings.
If you have ever seen star ratings in a website’s Organic SEO search result listing, then this is due to Schema.
However, the actual setup of Schema ranges from incredibly simple (like putting the business name and address) to incredibly complicated (setting up the details of a configurable product).
Despite this, Google and Bing have both been pushing for website owners to have Schema implemented, and done so correctly, so that they can get a fuller picture of what each page is related to. Google, especially, was pushing this because it helps to build up their Knowledge Base listings.
Therefore, it should come as no surprise that Google Maccabees was used as another push…
In short, if you don’t have any Schema on your website, or if your Schema is incorrectly implemented, you may very well suffer a hit on your Organic SEO rankings.
So what can we do?
To put it simply, you need to get Schema installed onto your website as soon as possible, although after sorting out a fully responsive website if you don’t already have one.
The first step of doing this would be to determine which type of Schema each page or section of a page should have. You can find a list of the different Schema types here, but as you can see, there are tonnes of different options. In fact, it is easy to get lost in the web of interconnecting Schema and parameter inheritance.
The best way to determine which ones to use is to write down your website’s architecture, determining all of the different page types that you have. From there, you can work out which pages have specific sections that require certain Schema types.
This is, again, a pretty big and complex task that needs to be undertaken. However, the benefits are huge!
Not only do you protect yourself against Google Maccabees, but on average, websites with properly implemented Schema typically see a 30% increase on Click Through Rate from Google search results!
So, as well as protecting your website, you could actually increase the level of traffic you get as well. It’s a win-in situation, but also one that is now absolutely necessary.