Have you ever wondered how businesses display knowledge panels in the SERPs for local results with all of their business information? Most websites that have this information displayed use local schema markup.
Schema markup is great for generating rich results, which translate to more organic clicks and conversions.
Read our latest guide to learn more about how to add local schema markup to your website in as little as 20 minutes.
Local business schema is structured data that businesses use to categorize and define information about themselves.
LocalBusiness schema is a subtype of Organization and Place, inheriting properties from both of these markup types.
Examples of websites that are eligible for LocalBusiness schema include:
Any businesses that can provide a physical address are all eligible for this structured data type.
Several kinds of businesses can benefit from local SEO.
Medical services such as doctor’s offices, dental practices and urgent care clinics are perfect, as folks often perform searches for these specializations within your city.
Law offices are another type of business that people rely on local searches for as they try to find an expert nearby for legal counsel.
Like I mentioned before, bars and restaurants often operate on a local level, with most searches being “restaurants near me.”
Real estate is also location-specific, with many real estate agents adopting hyper-local strategies to gain visibility in the SERPs as they try to compete with the likes of Zillow and Trulia.
Looking to learn more about search engine optimization? Read our SEO beginner’s guide for everything you need to know about SEO and how to drive business results through search engines like Google and Bing.
Below we’ll walk through the steps required to add and create local schema markup for your website.
First, you’ll want to make sure that your NAP (name, address, phone number) are displayed in HTML text format on your website.
Many businesses will display these elements as images, but search engines can’t crawl text displayed within images, which is why adding these as HTML is crucial.
Next, you’ll want to specify what kind of organization you are.
There are several different Local Business types that are eligible for LocalBusiness schema, so you can parse it down depending on if your business falls within a specific category. Check out schema.org for a list of more specific business types.
If your business isn’t listed, you can just use LocalBusiness as a catch-all and move onto the next step.
Google provides documentation that outlines what’s required and recommended when creating LocalBusiness schema.
Below is a list of the required properties that you need to include for your schema markup - @id, physical address, and name of the business:
While you can just include the required fields as a bare minimum, it’ll will benefit your site’s local SEO to include the following recommended fields, if applicable:
When working with clients, here are the following fields that I’ve included the most on their websites:
While you can write up this schema manually, I prefer using Merkle’s Schema Markup Generator to help make my life easier.
All you have to do is fill out the required fields, and it will automatically generate the schema markup code for you.
There are also other structured data testing tools that you can use to automatically generate schema, which you can check out in my other post.
Almost done! The second-to-last step includes testing your markup for errors or warnings. You can use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to validate your LocalBusiness schema.
It will point out any errors/warnings, and where they are in your code so you can go back and fix them.
One caveat - Google is replacing SDTT with it’s new rich results tester, which is another alternative for checking schema markup.
Last step - all you have to do is add your schema markup code to the header of your desired page (typically the homepage for LocalBusiness schema).
Once you publish your changes, make sure they took effect, and you’re all set!
If you’re not sure how to add schema markup to your website, I have an article that will walk you through the process.
If you don’t have access to your website’s header, or the above steps feel like too much effort, you can also use Google’s Data Highlighter Tool to add local business schema to your website.
I also offer an article that walks you through these steps, but all you have to do is highlight the required fields on your desired page that Data Highlighter requests.
LocalBusiness schema is generally better if the business is a brick-and-mortar facility that publicly displays its address.
For eCommerce businesses or service providers that don’t have a single physical location, Organization Schema may be the better option.
For a business with multiple locations, you’ll need to make sure that all locations have a physical location (otherwise, you’ll need to use the Organization schema type).
You’ll then include the subOrganization property for each additional location you want to include.