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The benefits of structured data and how to implement product schema on Shopify

The benefits of structured data and how to implement product schema on Shopify

A standardized markup called schema or structured data helps stores on Shopify get rich snippets for their pages and attract more clicks from the search. In this post, we explore the types of schema e-commerce businesses might need and the ways to implement them.

The benefits of structured data and how to implement product schema on Shopify

Your goal to SEO success is not only to get product pages to rank high but also to have more users clicking on your links from search results. To achieve a higher click-through rate, you need to have informative and attractive search snippets.

Compare these two e-commerce search results:

Product search results with a rich snippet and without one

The first one only contains title and description, while the second one also features a product photo, its rating, number of reviews, price range, and availability. It seems pretty obvious that most searchers will land on the second result as it gives them more details right away.

The question is, how to get all relevant details featured in the search snippet? You’ll need to implement the schema markup or, in other words, structured data.

Let’s discover what it is, what types of e-commerce structured data you need, and how to incorporate them in a Shopify store.

What is structured data?

Structured data (also called schema markup) is a unified standard that marks different types of data: images, videos, products, FAQs, and so on. It is applied in the website code to have more control over pages’ appearance in search. It’s not guaranteed 100%, but if you have this markup set for your web pages, you will most likely get rich snippets for your Shopify store that will highlight particular types of data. 

It’s especially important to implement structured data for e-commerce websites, as it helps product pages look more helpful in search, steal the focus from other results, and attract more clicks.

Why do you need schema markup?

  • It allows for faster indexing. Structured data helps Google discover your pages and better understand the content they contain.

  • It makes your product pages more attractive in search results. We can’t say it helps them stand out from the crowd—as most e-commerce sites do implement product structured data, but it definitely makes your search snippets more informative and helpful to potential customers. 

  • Structured data can bring higher rankings. By making your Shopify snippets more attractive and getting them more clicks, it sends Google signals about these pages being loved by users. And pages that searchers are actively engaging with get higher rankings over time. 

  • It makes your pages eligible for getting into the Popular Products SERP feature. For commercial keywords, Google often shows a carousel with popular products which can be refined by price, type, or other filters. The more data you specify according to the schema.org product properties, the higher your chances of getting featured. 
Popular Products carousel in search

  • It makes your products easily discoverable via image search. Searchers that browse through images will see the product badge for those images associated with products.
Product badges in mobile search results

  • Not product pages alone—schema markup can help improve the representation of a company’s brand in search, make site’s images more searchable, or feature FAQs or other valuable information in the snippet. 

  • It helps dominate the local search. Some schema types will get your links featured on the map results, making it easier for local customers to find you.

All types of markup are listed on schema.org, as well as their properties that have to be inserted on a page. There are 3 structured data formats (JSON-LD, RDFa, and microdata), but JSON-LD is a generally recommended and accepted one so you don’t need to bother with others.

What types of e-commerce schema do you need?

Before you start incorporating structured data properties, you need to define what exact markup types you need for your store.

Here are the most common e-commerce schemas:

  • Organization. Besides making your store’s products easily searchable, you might also want to have relevant information about your company displayed in the search results. The Organization markup can be implemented on the homepage, about-us or any other page where you write about your company’s brand.

With the help of this schema, your site might get an informative knowledge panel on the right side of the results:

Company data in search

  • LocalBusiness. This schema works similarly to the previous one but focuses on location-specific information such as accepted currencies, physical location on the map, etc. 

This markup helps businesses appear in the SERP feature with the map triggered by commercial-intent queries:

Map product results

  • Product. This is probably the most important area to focus on. Any product or service offered on your site should have product structured data. It includes a lot of properties including brand, model, color, size, SKU, etc. 

  • Offer. Product data can also be marked with the Offer schema, or you can nest properties from Offer within your products. These properties include price, availability, and condition.

Here’s a simple product schema example made from Product and Offer properties:

Product schema code example

  • AggregateRating. This schema type shows the average rating on a 5-star scale. Thanks to it, you’ll have your product snippets showing the number of collected reviews and their average rating.

  • FAQPage. By adding this markup, you’ll notify Google that particular pages include the FAQ section, and you’ll be able to enjoy a rich product snippet with some FAQs automatically pulled out into it.
Product FAQs in search

  • CollectionPage. You can also add product markup to your collection pages—this schema type allows you to set the order of products. 

  • BreadcrumbList. Just like breadcrumb navigation helps site visitors easily move between pages, breadcrumb schema lets you have this kind of navigation in the search snippet of your Shopify store page.

Look at the following schema markup example—the URL in the snippet includes breadcrumbs (the path from the main page to the product category and to the subcategory) even though the actual URL doesn’t look like that.

Breadcrumbs in a search snippet

  • BlogPosting. If you have a blog on your site, you can mark each post with the respective schema type so that Google understands it better. 

  • VideoObject. This structured data type allows you to mark all video content. If you have product usage tutorials, care instructions, or other videos your audience might be interested in, adding the markup will increase the chances of them appearing in video search or in the SERP feature with videos. 

The VideoObject schema usually includes the publisher (your store name) and date. 

Product video in search results

How to add structured data to Shopify?

When you’re set on what types of e-commerce schema markup you need, you have three options:

  • Implement it manually. This is possible if you or someone on your team has some knowledge of HTML, JSON-LD, and schema.org product properties and other data types. If you’re not that familiar with any of these, as well as with editing Shopify’s Liquid, it’s best to outsource this task or use an app.
  • Hire specialists. You can find developers that will implement all the structured data for you.
  • Use a structured data Shopify app. There are plenty of SEO apps, some of which include or are dedicated to Shopify schema markup capabilities. 

Check out these applications: Smart SEO offers JSON-LD structured data in any paid plan (the monthly price starts from $9.99, a 7-day free trial is available); TinyIMG also includes schema functionality in a paid plan (it costs $9.99 per month or $1.99 if paid for 2 years ahead). 

The mentioned apps have many other SEO features, but there are several tools solely focused on Shopify schema markup: Hello Rich Snippets for SEO ($6.99 per month or $4.99 if billed annually), Schema Plus for SEO ($14.99 per month, and note that the app is built by former Google engineers), SEO, JSON-LD, Schema (includes a free plan with a limited number of supported schema types; paid versions cost $9.99 for Basic Shopify stores and $14.99 for all others), JSON-LD for SEO (a one-charge $299 app). 

App for Shopify structured data

Using such apps, you can set up the needed e-commerce schema properties in a few clicks. Some of them also include the possibility of checking if the markup is implemented correctly. If not via an app, you can test your Shopify structured data in the Rich Results Test.

We hope this will help you get rich snippets for products and other pages of your store, increase the number of search traffic, and convert that traffic into paying customers. 

For more things SEO, check out our guide to optimizing a Shopify store for search engines

Anastasiia Osypenko

Anastasiia is a content marketer with expertise in tech and SEO. Besides writing and editing, she makes music and spends time with her pets.

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