Reviews are major determinants of success or failure in online sales platforms as they act as trust and quality indicators. Most businesses have little control of the reviews they receive due to them being user generated. Schema markups, however, allows business owners the ability to showcase positive reviews in Google SERPs as well as rank up on Google.
Schema Markups Definition
Websites have been using schema markups in SEO to help improve their competitive advantage. The development of this semantic vocabulary by Schema.org has allowed websites to improve traffic. The schema markup code simply communicates with search engines on how to understand and display additional information from web pages; then relay it to the end user.
There exist 571 different schema types with each performing a specific function. However, the majority of these schema types are useful in improving your content in the Google SERP. These schema types work in different ways depending on how you want your content to be enhanced.
Despite schema.org being the founder of the schema markup code, Google developers have also played a great role in providing instructions on how to use schema markups. Understanding how to use schema markups will come in handy when using the code to enhance content on your website.
Using Schema Markups for Ratings and Reviews
This article mainly focuses on schema markups used to improve reviews and ratings. There exists multiple schema markup options that can help you take advantages of your reviews in the SERPs; thus, improve the visibility of your website.
These numerous possibilities for enhancing your website are there due to the variety of online products that can be reviewed and rated through Google. Google supports ratings and reviews for creative materials including artwork, and music, businesses, products, among others.
Types of Schema Markups used for Reviews
There exist two types of review schema markups, namely:
- Single Review
- Aggregate Review/Rating
Using schema markups for single reviews is quite straightforward. The process involves adding only a few items to the code. These items include:
- The product
- The review agency
- The author
- The date the review was published
- The Rating
- The publisher
The only complication that exists when using the single rating markup is defining the scale of your rating. One may choose the Google default 5-point rating system or a custom rating system.
Below is how an individual review shows up in search results.
Credit: Google Developers
The aggregate review markup is mainly used in instances where you have multiple reviews and have already calculated an average rating,
This markup differs from the single rating markup due to the increased review count. Just like the single review markup, one can use a custom rating system or the default 5-point rating system recommended by Google.
Below are some of the examples of how your website will look on the SERP after using the aggregate rating markup.
Credit: Google Developers
Creating and Implementing Review Schema Markups
There exist various tools for creating schema markups with the most widely used being Google Structured Data Markup Helper. There also exists the option of using a web developer to create markups for your website.
This article, however, will introduce you to a couple of free tools that can be used to generate review scheme markups for your website. Using these free tools will allow collection of needed information to create markups as well as the ability to insert markup reviews to your website directly.
1a. Schema Creator for Review for Single Ratings
Schema Creator provides the easiest way of generating the code. To get the code, you simply need to add the title of the review in the name section, a summary of the review in the description box, and a URL for the review.
Other information required to get the code include
- Publishing date
- Item reviewed
- Review body
- Rating scale (can either be the 5-star scale or a custom scale)
1b. Web Code Tool Form for Aggregate Rating Markup
Creating a code using the Web Code Tool form is easy as you simply need to fill out
- The item under review
- Number of votes for specific review
- Total number of reviews
You then copy and paste the code into your website.
2. Google Structured Data Testing Tool
Not all structured data is pickup by crawlers. The Google Structured Data Testing tool is used to ensure data validity; therefore, increasing the possibility of being picked up by crawlers. Although data gotten from the web code tools and schema creators will be what you need, there is need to make further changes to ensure the schema is robust and more precise.
Using this testing tool ensures that any changes to data are correct.
3. Put the Code in Your Website
You can implement the code on your website in two ways. You can either forward the code to your web developer who then implements it to your website. Alternatively, you can add the code to the HTML window in WordPress.
The code may also require some adjustment before implementation. This may include adding cosmetic features such as breaks (<br>). It is also crucial to ensure the validity of the code by using a structured data testing tool.
Expectations after Implementation
Schema markup has minimal influence on your rankings and organic visibility. However, using scheme markups affects your traffic by influencing organic CTR. Reviews help a website to stand out; thus, a likelihood of an increase in traffic.
To track the changes after implementing the code, simply track your page’s performance in Google Analytics
Other Schema Markups
Other than review schema markups, there exists other markups that you can use to ensure improved traffic to your website. Schema markups are quite diverse, and using any of these tools will surely help you stand out in search engine results.
A disadvantage with schema markup is the high technical ability required to get the code and put it in your website. There also exists other tools that you can use without any specific skill set. The advantage of using review markup is that the language remains constant; therefore, no need to constantly update the code.
If you are keen to display reviews and ratings on Google search listings please contact a Singapore SEO services provider like MediaOne.