Understanding Structured Data and Why It’s Important for SEO

November 01, 2018Justin Radomski

You’ve been going all in on search engine optimization. You’re knocking content strategy and creation out of the park, have mastered the notoriously tricky task of link building and have done everything that you know of to optimize each one of your web pages. Just when you think you’ve left no stone unturned, along comes an SEO element that you’re not too familiar with…Structured Data.

As search engines become more sophisticated, and the amount of data that can be accessed online grows each every day, structured data has become essential for gaining visibility and ranking in search results. If optimizing structured data is a relatively new concept for you, here are a few key points to get you started.

First, What Is Structured Data?

In the simplest terms, structured data is basically little snippets of information that helps search engines determine what your web pages are all about. Believe it or not, as sophisticated and complex as Google’s algorithms have become, they still need some help from you. Structured data can make all the difference in establishing relevance in search results.

Structured data appears as those extra snippets of information that show up next to a website’s description in search results. When optimized for search engine marketing, structured data features information that’s highly relevant to the user’s search inquiry – think along the lines of hours of operation, pricing and average review rating that might appear next to a restaurant listing.

Why It’s Important

If we want to get right down to it, structured data tells search engines what you’re about, which instantly boosts your potential for a priority ranking. Considering that Google is so highly focused on providing the best experience and the best results for its users, anything that brings your brand to the forefront is an SEO bonus.

From the perspective of a search engine user, structured data makes your business easy to connect with. In many cases, structured data eliminates the immediate need to click on a listing but encourages exploration because it grabs the internet user’s attention.

Using the restaurant example above, the person who initiates the search doesn’t need to click on the page to find out the crucial details, but they’ve also been given enough information that they’ll likely click to in hopes of finding a menu or to check out more images.

Optimizing Structured Data

Unfortunately, there isn’t an easy form to fill out or a button to push that optimizes structured data. Google pretty much crawls through and pulls up what it can find. There are things you can do on your end that make this easier, including making sure that your backend code contains content signals that will catch Google’s attention.

Elements of local SEO, like bringing attention to content that features maps, product descriptions, relevant content, special offers and reviews is an excellent start to your strategy, but at least a fundamental understanding of HTML coding comes in handy for getting your content featured.

This aspect of SEO is growing more important for search engine optimization, and we’d love to tell you more about it. If you’re ready to optimize your digital presence, we offer the SEO services that will get the job done. Contact Double Up Digital today to learn more and receive a free SEO audit of your current campaign.

Justin Radomski

Through his passion for web development and design, Justin executes the creative vision of all Double Up Digital projects. Motivated by perfection, Justin ensures that all design and development products exceed client expectations and constantly challenge the industry standards of design accomplishment. In his spare time, Justin can be found taking pictures that are truly out of this world.