With millions of pages all vying to rank in the top spots of Google, getting a competitive edge is vital for driving organic traffic to your website.
One of those competitive edges is using schema markup on your site pages.
Schema (or structured data) is a coding language developed by search engines to help them better understand the content on a web page.
There are hundreds of different schema types available, but one that you should be using is article schema.
Read our latest guide to learn more about article schema, what is it, and how to add it to your website in as little as 15 minutes.
Article schema is structured data that webmasters can use for their news articles and blog posts.
Schema markup is important because it’s considered to be a ranking factor in Google’s algorithm.
By adding schema markup, you can anticipate a boost in keyword rankings for your priority pages.
Some schema markups, like FAQPage schema, can also generate what are known as rich results, which can help increase the CTR of your pages that appear in the search results.
Below we’ll walk through the two different types of article schema that are available to publishers.
NewsArticle schema is for websites that report the news, or conduct data journalism in an effort to provide context or supporting materials to existing news content.
Most websites will incorporate BlogPosting schema for their blog posts. The main rule of thumb - if it isn’t a news article, or you aren’t reporting on timely trends, then it isn’t eligible for NewsArticle schema.
Below we’ll walk through how to create article schema for your blog posts.
First, let’s walk through the required fields you need to include for article schema:
From there, you can either work with your engineering team to automate the addition of article schema on your new and existing articles.
You can also create article schema on a page-by-page basis. I personally use Merkle’s Schema Markup Generator tool. It’s incredibly easy to use - all you have to do is fill out the required fields and it will automatically generate the JSON-LD code to include in the <head> section of your web page.
Now that you have created your article schema, you’ll need to add it to your website.
Again, you should work with your engineering team to accomplish this, but your article schema should be marked up in JSON-LD format and included within the <head> section of your web page (or above the <body> section).
I’ve written a more comprehensive walkthrough on how to add structured data to a website, but if you’re a WordPress user, you can also use the Insert Headers and Footers plugin to help with this, or use a schema markup WordPress plugin.
Now that you’ve added and published your schema changes to your web page, now you’ll need to test it to ensure there are no errors or warnings associated with the structured data markup.
The first tool you should use to check for warnings and errors with your schema markup is Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool.
This tool will show you if there are any errors or warnings that need to be resolved, and which line in the code is triggering those issues for easy resolution.
You can also use Google’s Rich Results Tester. This tool is similar to the previous one listed above, but will also allow you to preview what your schema will look like in the search results if it’s eligible for rich result features.
There are also a slew of other schema markup testing tools that are available when checking for structured data errors on your website.
Looking for more information on SEO? Make sure to read our beginner’s guide to search engine optimization for all the trends and ranking factors you should be considering when improving the organic visibility of your website.