Comprehensive guide to review schema

How to add reviews to search engine results page

This is the third article following the local business and breadcrumb schema guides and covers how to add reviews schema code into the website and to get stars to display in SERPs. We all know the “stars” can appear in your AdWords campaigns but with schema you can get the same stars in organic search which can help immensely with your click through rate (CTR).

Organic Search SERPS

To get these review stars to come up for whatever reason first of all you need to dedicate a space on your site to the review, whether it be for the product or the company. In this example WhatCar have done the following –

WhatCar stars

Hidden behind this section much like the breadcrumbs and local business is some hidden schema code.

Adding review schema to the site

Before adding the next code, make sure to attach it first to a previous div itemscope itemtype such as PRODUCT or LOCALBUSINESS. This will then allow the crawlers to know who or what these reviews belong to. With that set, let’s continue.

Review Schema 1

This division states that the following content is about reviews “AggregateRating”. The title indicates the content of the review section (it can be an image or text. This would be something along the lines of “We have been rated 4.5/5 on Review Site”.

Review Schema 2

This piece of code is the meat of the whole thing. The “Word-rating” highlights the actual wording of the score in the section. The “average” and “ratingValue” indicate the actual score with the “bestRating” highlighting the maximum mark. This bit of code indicates that the company has been rated 4.5/5.

Review Schema 3

This last section highlights how many reviews the company has recieved “666” “reviewCount” and lastly a link to the place where the reviews are stored. The / divs then close the review section off.

Closing

By adding this simple piece of code to a website search engines may show stars in your SERPs for those pages which have the code greatly increasing your CTR.

The Power of Google+

Image

 

There is no doubt in my mind that Google plus (G+) is a powerful tool for marketers, SEO, social media managers or anyone who is involved in their digital image, it has it’s challenges particularly as most people are accustomed to a couple of “main” social media sites and are skeptical as to why they should be using another when it is more or less twitter and facebook rolled into one. 

Sharing community

G+ is a very active sharing community, with many people in my circles publically sharing very often – pictures, blog posts and videos are the most common I have found. Interestingly enough, there aren’t many people sharing just a short paragraph of an event or an experience they’ve had such as they would often do on twitter and facebook. This works for me and my work as I can easily share pictures of cars we have specials on, blog posts and general car pictures. As I typed this I noticed the glaring similarities with Pinterest. 

+1 and shares

Users of G+ are very quick to +1 and share content they’ve seen on their feed, it’s a fair assessment to say that you don’t have to work as hard for the-all-important-shares with G+; which again works for me. Shares, +1, likes, retweets and all the rest of it are meaningful to SEO so it’s important to have engagement from people. If you compared our Facebook likes and G+ +1’s then in a few months our G+ will have dwarfed it.

G+ and SERPs

This is where the golden egg can be found. If i search for our primary keyword in incognito on google we will be 9th (At time of writing). Now, if I sign in to my personal Google account (Which has +1’d and followed our G+ page) then we are 4th, 5th and 7th! The 4th and 5th positions are taken up by recent google+ posts and the 7th is our normal result. Amazing stuff! This meant that we are 30% of the first page for that keyword under those circumstances.

I believe Google has possibly changed the algorithm slightly or dependant on something I can’t figure out yet as when I logged into my girlfriends account (Who has +1’d and followed) then we were 2nd! 

What does this mean for SEOs?

Pretty simple really, you need to be working on your G+ profile for your business. We are a fairly small company and the effects have been encouraging. However, the people you need to be followed by need to be relevant because coming up 4th, 5th and 7th for people who will not be purchasing or who will not be interested in your products is a wasted effort. Get to know the climate for your industry and get your name around in relevant communities, your G+ page needs to be nurtured just the same as other marketing channels you are using.