Schema.org Markup for Small Businesses

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Published July 24, 2013 by Brad Knutson
Schema.org Markup for Small Businesses

Schema.org markup is set of structured HTML tags that are recognized by search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo! and Yandex to generate search results that make it easier for users to find what they are searching for. That is the long-winded technical explanation. Scheme.org says:

Many sites are generated from structured data, which is often stored in databases. When this data is formatted into HTML, it becomes very difficult to recover the original structured data. Many applications, especially search engines, can benefit greatly from direct access to this structured data. On-page markup enables search engines to understand the information on web pages and provide richer search results in order to make it easier for users to find relevant information on the web. Markup can also enable new tools and applications that make use of the structure.

In layman’s terms, Schema.org markup is a way to markup your website so that search engines can understand certain parts of it better.

At first, Schema.org markup can be confusing, so I thought it would be best to show a few examples.

Local Business – The Markup

Here is how you would markup data for a local business.


<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/LocalBusiness">
<a itemprop="url" href="http://bradsknutson.com">
<div itemprop="name"><strong>Brad S. Knutson Development and Marketing</strong></div>
</a>
<div itemprop="description">Creation and implementation, Brad does it all!</div>
<div itemprop="address" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/PostalAddress">
<span itemprop="streetAddress">950 18th Street</span>
<span itemprop="addressLocality">Newport</span>,
<span itemprop="addressRegion">MN</span>
<span itemprop="postalCode">55055</span>
Phone: <span itemprop="telephone">651-651-6511</span>
</div>
</div>

The Result

Creation and implementation, Brad does it all!
950 18th Street
Newport,
MN
55055
Phone: 651-651-6511

It looks really basic, right? The point is that the Schema markup enables search engines to understand the information on web pages and provide richer search results.

Person – The Markup

This markup is used to classify information about a specific individual, alive or otherwise (perhaps even a fictional character).


<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Person">
<a itemprop="url" href="http://bradsknutson.com"><span itemprop="name"><strong>Brad Knutson</strong></span></a>
<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Organization"><span itemprop="name">Brad Knutson Development and Marketing</span></div>
<span itemprop="jobtitle">Web Developer and SEO Magician</span>
<span itemprop="description">Brad S. Knutson is a bleeding edge web developer and inbound marketer</span>
<div itemprop="address" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/PostalAddress">
<span itemprop="streetAddress">950 18th Street</span>
<span itemprop="addressLocality">Newport</span>, <span itemprop="addressRegion">MN</span> <span itemprop="postalCode">55055</span>
</div>
<span itemprop="email">brad.s.knutson@gmail.com</span>
<span itemprop="telephone">651-651-6511</span>
<meta itemprop="birthDate" content="1988-05-06" />DOB: 05/06/1988
</div>

The Result

Brad Knutson Development and Marketing

Web Developer and SEO Magician
Brad S. Knutson is a bleeding edge web developer and inbound marketer

950 18th Street
Newport, MN 55055

brad.s.knutson@gmail.com
651-651-6511
DOB: 05/06/1988

Event – The Markup


<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/BusinessEvent">
<a itemprop="url" href="http://moz.com/mozcon"><span itemprop="name"><strong>MozCon</strong></span></a>
<span itemprop="description">Launch your inbound marketing skills into outer space by attending this year's MozCon! For three days, we bring you amazing, future-thinking content from industry leaders, deep diving into SEO, social media, marketing analytics, content strategy, data science, and so much more. You're sure to come back home with a universe's worth of actionable knowledge to start implementing.</span>
<meta itemprop="startDate" content="2013-07-08T08:00" />Starts: 07/08/2013 08:00AM
<meta itemprop="endDate" content="2013-07-10T17:00" />Ends: 07/10/2013 5:00PM
<div itemprop="location" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/PostalAddress">
<span itemprop="name">Washington State Convention Center</span>
<span itemprop="streetAddress">800 Convention Pl  Seattle</span>
<span itemprop="addressLocality">Seattle</span>, <span itemprop="addressRegion">WA</span> <span itemprop="postalCode">98101</span>
</div>
</div>

The Result


Launch your inbound marketing skills into outer space by attending this year’s MozCon! For three days, we bring you amazing, future-thinking content from industry leaders, deep diving into SEO, social media, marketing analytics, content strategy, data science, and so much more. You’re sure to come back home with a universe’s worth of actionable knowledge to start implementing.
Starts: 07/08/2013 08:00AM
Ends: 07/10/2013 5:00PM

Washington State Convention Center
800 Convention Pl Seattle
Seattle, WA 98101

Confused yet? Don’t worry about it. There are several tools out there that will help you build your markup if you don’t know how or don’t want to. Schema-creator.org from Raven Tools is my current personal favorite. Enter in your information and the markup will be generated for you.

Conclusion

As marketers we’re always looking for the next big thing to give us an edge over our competitors. For a while it was Google Authorship markup and Open Graph meta tags. After a while, our competitors start to catch up, and we begin to look for the next advantage. With Schema.org markup being so new to developers and marketers while also being widely adopted by major search engines, we’re in the sweet spot right now to take advantage of any benefits it will give us. These benefits may not come in the form of improved search engine rankings, but it very well may increase our exposure, which is a win in my book.

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Founder at Inbounderish
Brad Knutson is a Web Developer in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota. He has experience working with WordPress and Drupal, and also has an interest in SEO and Inbound Marketing.

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4 thoughts on “Schema.org Markup for Small Businesses

  1. Jason Carnahan

    Great article Brad, and I especially like the examples. There are a ton of code snippets out there, but I was looking for specific examples and found yours to be a big help. I was wondering though: is it a good idea to use multiple itemtypes on a single page? I still don’t have my head around this…

    As an example, i’ve added:

    ...

    And I’m wondering if I should also include a nested itemtype where the company address is:

    ...

    Is that legit?

    Reply
    1. Brad Knutson Post author

      Your code snippets won’t show in the comments section here, but I understand what you’re asking. It is common to multiple itemtypes on a single page, I do it all the time. For example, I have the “Article” itemtype on the same page as the “Person” itemtype which I use to markup the author. If there was business info or an event I would also feel comfortable marking those up as well.

      Hope that helps!

    2. Jason Carnahan

      Thanks Brad!

      Along those lines (using multiple types on one page) do you nest them? For example, would your “person” type be within the “article” or would they be two separate items (in two separate divs)?

      Thanks again for the feedback… this is something I’ve been struggling to understand for a while lol.

    3. Brad Knutson Post author

      I didn’t catch the nested part the first time around. I’m a little unclear on this also, as I’ve seen situations where the Google Structured Data Testing Tool said nested itemtypes are OK and other situations where it said that the nested itemtype wasn’t part of the parent.

      My advice would be to markup your page how you see fit (if it’s nested, so be it) and test it with the tool. If it gives you any errors or warnings, adjust your markup as needed.

      Good luck!

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