How To: structured data appreciated by Google!

 How To: structured data appreciated by Google!

Appearing on Google since 2019, HowTo structured data is used to indicate that content corresponds to a guide.

This content is then highlighted in search engine SERPs and voice assistants. HowTo is one of many structured data formats you can use to set yourself apart from your competition. Not to mention that Google is particularly fond of it.

It would be a shame to deprive yourself of it; is not it ?

What is a HowTo structured data?

HowTo structured data is essentially content that guides users through a series of steps to complete a task. It can be, for example, content that explains how to cook a dish or how to tie a tie.

In general, HowTo structured data is appropriate when the subject of the page is a step-by-step guide.

They are used to improve and highlight articles providing answers to the question " How? ". When you use the appropriate markup for this type of content, it appears as a rich result in Google search results. The content also appears as an action in the Google Assistant (on mobile).

This helps to highlight your content and therefore attract qualified traffic to your site.

How To: structured data appreciated by Google!

The Benefits of Structured Data HowTo

Using the HowTo format has several significant advantages.

It promotes a rich display of content in the SERPs, as a multi-step drop-down list. This makes step-by-step voice playback and navigation possible by Google Assistant and Google Home.

The Internet user thus obtains a precise result while enjoying a rich experience with your content. This necessarily results in increased traffic to your site. Several analyzes have also shown that rich results lead to an increase in the click-through rate between 5% and 30%.

In addition, HowTo rich results appeal to your readership and inspire admiration from your prospects and customers. For your competitors, it reinforces your authority and attracts their jealousy.

Supported content formats

HowTo rich results are actionable for content that includes text, images, or video.

However, the display of content in search results will be different depending on whether it has one or more images (or video).

  • For content that is essentially textual, with only a representative image, Internet users will see an overview of certain steps with only the main image.

  • If the content has images at each step, people will see the rich result as a carousel.

Content may sometimes include a mixture of text, images and videos. In this case, Google will determine the most appropriate format in which the rich result should appear.

How to implement HowTo structured data on your page?

Google provides webmasters with a step-by-step guide to adding HowTo type structured data to your pages.

You can consult the complete guide on Google Search Central, but in general, you must:

  • provide quality content. The quality and relevance of the content are major criteria for obtaining any type of rich result. In this regard, it is important to entrust the writing of your content to an expert to guarantee relevance and quality.

  • add the required properties of the HowTo markup and insert the structured data on the page. You will then need to follow Google's instructions to complete the process. If you use a CMS like WordPress, you can do this using a plugin.

  • Test your code for validation in the Rich Results Testing Tool.

  • add the page containing your structured data and analyze how Google sees the page with its URL inspection tool. The page must not be blocked by identifiers, a noindex tag or a robots.txt file.
  • If you make changes to your pages, you will need to notify Google by submitting a sitemap.

Note that there are three different formats supported by search engines for adding HowTo structured data.

You can embed it directly on the page in the form of Microdata or RDFa or use an external file in JSON-LD format.

What are the tools and resources to implement HowTo structured data?

Leveraging HowTo structured data involves using code.

If this seems too complicated for you, our SEO agency can help you implement your structured data. But if you want to get hands-on, know that there are tools and resources for writing and implementing HowTo structured data.

Here are some tools you can use:

  • Google's testing tool
  • A structured data generator
  • Google Structured Data Tool

Mistakes to avoid

Unlike FAQ structured data, HowTo markup is not for all types of content.

  • Google does not recommend the use of HowTo structured data for advertising purposes or for obscene content, violent images, etc.
  • Recipes have their own dedicated schema. It is therefore not recommended to use HowTo markup on this type of content.
  • You need to mark up each stage of content to set benchmarks for Google.
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