Saturday, June 1, 2013

SEO Guide for Schema Vocabulary with Microdata

Webmasters must  implement schema.org vocabulary along with microdata format in order to make the search engines easily understand the data contained in your web pages. Do not get confuse with what is Schema and microdata? It's a set of HTML tags that help the search engines to properly understand the content presented on the webpages and helps them to display the data to the users in the most appropriate manner.

Schema.org provides a collection of shared vocabularies along with microdata format for the use of major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex etc.

The dual benefit of Schema.org and microdata helps your web pages to rank higher on the search engines as easier processing of relatively useful data is made possible.

Why Use Microdata and Schema Vocabulary?


You must use microdata in order to help the search engines understand the underlying meaning of the content contained in your web pages. For example if your page is related to a movie then it would be better if the search engines are able to identify the data like movie name, movie director, type of video displayed, genre of the movie etc. This information can be displayed in two types-

For the user- As you will normally display it as content in your web pages. (Remeber, the search engines cannot think like humans so it would be difficult for them to process the data and understand the meaning in a similar manner as a human being).

For the search engines (using microdata) - If you use microdata in your web pages then this information can be directly used by Google and other search engines to understand the meaning of the data in almost the same manner as a human being would understand.


How to Use Microdata?


You will use the microdata as separate elements in the HTML tags. Two most important elements are itemscope and itemprop.

Itemscope

This attribute defines the item.

<div itemscope>
  <h1>Titanic</h1>
  <span>Director: James Cameron (born August 16, 1954) </span>
  <span>Romance Drama</span>
  <a href="video url goes here">Trailer</a>
</div>

Itemtype

This attribute defines the item specified in the itemscope.

<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Movie">
  <h1>Titanic</h1>
  <span>Director: James Cameron (born August 16, 1954)</span>
  <span>Romance Drama</span>
  <a href="video url goes here">Trailer</a>
</div>

Itemprop

This attribute is used along with the Itemscope and itemtype to define the properties of an item.

<div itemscope itemtype ="http://schema.org/Movie">
  <h1 itemprop="name">Titanic</h1>
  <span>Director: <span itemprop="director">James Cameron</span> (born August 16, 1954)</span>
  <span itemprop="genre">Romance Drama</span>
  <a href="video url goes here" itemprop="trailer">Trailer</a>
</div>

In a similar manner, you may use itemscope and itemtype for recipes, person, places, restaurants etc.

For full list of markup, visit Schema.org

SEO and Microdata


Microdata can be extremely useful in specifying the information in an appropriate way to the search engines. This is the reason search engine optimizers must use these HTML attributes to improve the visibility of their websites on search engines. Microdata can be used for all types of sites, like recipe sites, movie sites, restaurants, events, products, music sites or any other site which needs to specify local information in some way or the other.
  
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