How To Review Structured Data and Flag Errors
Okay, take a minute to gather your thoughts after the information overload and we’ll plough on!
So, I’ve guided you through what structured data is, why it’s important and a number of common types that can be implemented, but you may be asking the following question: Okay great, I know structured data is something I need to focus on, but how do I go about reviewing it?
Well fear not, I will now show you how to review existing structured data on your website in order to flag errors and further opportunities.
REVIEW EXISTING STRUCTURED DATA
There are multiple ways to review the existing structured data on a website, which I will briefly guide you through now:
- Screaming Frog (other crawlers are available)
- This is a popular crawling software that allows webmasters to identify a number of issues such as broken links, meta data issues, canonical issues and so on.
- However, it now allows for extraction of structured data! All you need to do is enable this within the ‘Configuration’ tab – these options are not selected as default.
- Crawl the website as normal and when you click onto the ‘Structured Data’ tab, each page will be listed along with the structured data types present.
- This area of the tool will also allow you to dig into any errors or warnings like so:
- This data can then be exported into an excel spreadsheet so you can address the issues and get them resolved.
- Google Search Console
- Another way in which you can review existing structured data on your website is to use Google Search Console.
- There is a section called ‘Enhancements’ that will show any types of structured data that Google has found on a website
- When clicking into each type of structured data, Google provides the number of instances found across the website along with the number of errors and warnings:
- This provides webmasters with the mechanism to identify errors and ensure they are resolved.
So, there you have it – a couple of ways in which you can identify structured data errors across your website and ensure they are swiftly resolved.
HIGHLIGHTING FURTHER OPPORTUNITIES
There may be types of structured data that you don’t currently use but may benefit from massively, but where do you start?
I find that a good place to start is with competitors. Using the ‘Screaming Frog’ method means you can take a competitor’s website and identify which types of structured data they are currently using. This will spot any gaps and opportunities you are currently missing out on.
The second way to do this is to review all page types across your entire website and map relevant structured data types to each page. I find that the most efficient way of doing this is by creating an excel spreadsheet (this could also include the existing types of structured data you have).
For example, let’s list a few page types below and map structured data types to them:
- Blog Posts >> BlogPosting structured data
- FAQ Page >> FAQ structured data
- Product Pages >> Product structured data
- How to blog post >> HowTo structured data
- And so on – you get the idea!
Throughout the section earlier on in this blog post where I listed various types of common structured data, I placed links to a resource provided by Google that will give you a more comprehensive list to reference. You could review this list to see whether you could map any of those structured data types to any of those pages.
There is also the Schema.org website itself. Whilst Google list the most common types, they don’t mention all types of structured data that can be used.