In this article, we are going to talk about how you can create complex schema markup for WordPress content. We're going to cover two methods, utilizing a paid plugin for simple and efficient creation, or building schemas for free.
First, here's a quick introduction to what schema is, and why you want to include this technical feature on your WordPress website. Schema markup is officially a way to create structured data for your digital content, making it easy for machines and algorithms to read. Unofficially, it's a great way to add additional features to your Google Engine listings, which typically have a beneficial impact on your CTR.
There are different schema structures for different types of content. For example, if you have a product, then the product schema may enable its associated ratings to be displayed alongside its Google review. If you have a food blog that posts recipes, there's a schema for that.
Basically, implementing schema on your WordPress website is a great way to increase your Google search engine ranking placement, listing features, and overall site traffic. It's a worthwhile investment of your time , if you use the free method, or your money , if you use the paid method. Whatever your implementation style is, definitely consider at least learning more about the schema markup. This article is a great place to read about why it is important from the master themselves, Google: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/intro-structured-data
Now, let's get right into this tutorial, starting off with the free method.
The free method of creating complex schema for WordPress content is actually relatively easy, but nowhere near as efficient as using the paid plugin, discussed below. Consider this when trying to figure out the best way to create your schema.
It's also a no plugin way of doing things, meaning that less bloat is added to your website, and you may see minimal performance benefits. With that being said, here's exactly how to implement schema markup on your WordPress blog posts for free, with no plug in.
This is a two step process. First, you need to generate the schema in accordance with the content on your website, and then you need to add it to the actual content.
We will be using a free tool offered by Google called the “Structured Data Markup Helper” to help generate our mark up . Then, we will validate this markup with another Google tool, and finally we will add it to our WordPress post. Depending on the type of content, this may be a blog post, page, or something else.
Enter the URL of your content and select the data type. You can choose between 12 different types, ranging from a question and answer page, to a job posting, to a book review, to an article, and more.
The next step of this process will ask you to tag your data, filling in predefined schema markup fields. This is done through an easy to use visual interface.
You can also add custom tags if you are unable to select any of your content for some reason.
Then, just continue with your schema markup generation by clicking the next button , and you should be good to go. This will generate a JSON, that you should copy for the next step of implementing the markup in your specific WordPress post or page.
Remember, this free method is a way to add schema to WordPress without a plugin, so we're just going to be using the built in features that ship with the CMS.
Under your content type, be it a blog post, WordPress page, or something else, click on the screen options toggle (three dots next to the gear) in the upper right corner. Then click Preferences. Scroll all the way down, and check the “custom fields” option on. Then choose enable and reload. We will be using this built-in feature to the WordPress CMS to easily add schema.
Now, in the user interface that allows you to manipulate the custom fields in the WordPress gutenberg editor, simply click add new and give the new field the name “schema”. Then paste in the generated code that you created with the Google structured data tool.
Then click add custom fields, save your post, and you have associated all the data necessary for Google to read your schema markup and add the appropriate search enhancements. You can check that it worked with this tester. This is the easiest way to add schema to WordPress for free without a plugin.
However, it still requires you to use the Tool to actually generate the schema mark up, or you need to memorize the actual format. For many, this is inefficient, especially if you are publishing a large quantity of posts. For that, I recommend checking out the paid method which is discussed below, and something that our agency has used on many larger projects.
If you're looking for a way to be more efficient while creating perfect schemas every time, we recommend taking a look at Schema Pro. When creating several professional content websites for reviews, food blogs, and restaurants, we made use of the Schema Pro plugin to automate schema creation in WordPress. Here's how you would go about creating that structure with this plugin.
There are a few ways to go about creating schemas with this plugin, but the primary selling point here is that you can globally apply schemas to your entire website. For example, if you have a local business, you can apply that schema to all pages, a range of pages, or an individual page. If you have a category of blog posts dedicated specifically to publishing recipes, you can apply the recipe schema to every post in that category, and automatically populate the necessary data for each.
All the field mapping is done automatically, the code generation is automatic as well, and placed directly in the header of your site. It works like a charm, and is great for larger use cases where you don't want to spend the time needed to manually generate WordPress schema markup for individual posts.
Hopefully this was a helpful resource when it comes to adding schema to your WordPress website for free without a plugin, and also utilizing a plugin to save some time period we recommend trying the free version first, and then if you feel that it's warranted, upgrading to Schema Pro, a plugin that helps you easily set up your schema. If you have any questions or recommendations, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.
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