Google Local Schema Guidelines Updated: What Now?

“How can you make my site stand out in the search engines?”

It’s one of the most common questions my local business clients have.

“How can you get more traffic to my site from Google?”

These are big asks.

After all, there’s no shortage of local SEO tips out there for just about any problem you might come across. But, Google always surprises us with something new. On August 27, 2016, Google announced they made updates to their local schema guidelines. Mike Blumenthal posted the announcement on Twitter.

Updated Google Schema Review Guidelines for Local Businesses https://t.co/wy31pdmcJU

— Mike Blumenthal (@mblumenthal) August 27, 2016

Anyone who has ever worked on local SEO knows how valuable schema markup can be. You have 400 different variations of business types to choose from in the schema markup. Then throw in the vast array of custom properties like sameAs, geo, and hasMAP and you’re head is spinning like you’re Regan from The Exorcist.

The more you use structured data, the more important it is to dig up the details about the ongoing updates. I’ve done a deep dive on all the parameters for Google’s latest schema guidelines update. Let’s take a look.

What Is Schema Markup?

Your schema markup makes your site smooth like butter for the search engines. Your schema markup is microdata that mostly makes it easier for the SERPs to understand your website so it can match you to relevant search queries. It creates interactive elements and rich snippets in the search results for a more engaging user experience.

Before you start adding any schema markup to your site, you need to learn how schema works. First, pop over to Schema.org to search for a type of microdata you might use. Schema.org provides sets of structured markup for all different business types. It’s a compilation of work from Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Yandex.

Let’s break down some of the popular schema markup languages:

Types of Schema Markup

Organization Schema Markup
Organization schema markup enhances your Knowledge Graph and snippet in the search results.

organization schema markup starbucks

Schema Person Markup
Person markup is similar to organization markup in that it enhances your Knowledge Graph display, but it’s for an individual.

person schema markup matt cutts

Website Schema Markup
Website schema markup creates a Sitelinks Search Box feature and enhances the name of your site in the SERPs. The Sitelinks Search Box will only work if you already have a site search on your site.

website schema markup

Site Navigation Schema Markup
Site Navigation schema markup helps the search engines read your site architecture and can increase organic sitelinks.

site navigation schema markup

Breadcrumbs Markup
Breadcrumb schema markup creates rich snippets for your site in the search results.

breadcrumbs schema markup

Video Schema Markup
Video schema markup allows Google to display rich snippets for your YouTube videos.

video schema markup

Event Schema Markup
Event markup is used for local events or festivals.

events schema markup

Schema Local Business Markup
LocalBusiness and PostAddress schema markup can be used by local businesses to enhance your local listing.

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