Instead of matching keywords on a page to keywords in user queries, search engines are now trying to understand the meaning and intent behind every user’s query and your website content to provide the most relevant results.
Adding Schema Markup, or Structured Data, to your website can help search engines understand and contextualize your content. In doing so, they can better match your content to user queries and help your content stand out in search as rich results. These are just two of the many benefits of implementing a robust Schema Markup strategy.
While most enterprises have become aware of the concept of Schema Markup, implementing it at scale remains a challenge. Many have tried to roll it out internally, only to see little success.
Let’s weigh the pros and cons of doing Schema Markup internally vs. hiring Schema App. Understanding each approach’s advantages and potential drawbacks will help you determine which is best for your business.
Pros of Doing Schema Markup In-House
There are two key benefits to managing your Schema Markup in-house: Convenience and security.
If you already have an internal team member who is an expert in Schema Markup, they can spearhead your initiative and create a Schema Markup strategy for your business. Using such an approach may help you get a head start and allow you to avoid bringing in an external specialist to manage your Schema Markup process.
Easier to Manage Security
If you partner with an external vendor, your company might need to conduct a security review on the vendor to ensure compliance. If you decide to integrate their tools or software with your content management system, you will also have to verify their ability to manage any sensitive information.
Doing your Schema Markup in-house makes it easier to manage security and compliance. Since everyone involved in the project works directly for your organization, they will already be aware of your policies and regulations.
Cons of Doing Schema Markup In-House
If your organization decides to manage their Schema Markup internally, you could potentially encounter challenges such as:
Lack of Schema Markup Expertise and Internal Resources
Schema Markup is a very technical area of SEO with a steep learning curve. You’ll have to learn the Schema.org vocabulary, master writing the JSON-LD code, add the markup to the necessary web pages and manage it proactively as the content on your pages changes.
Furthermore, if you want to maximize the semantic value of your Schema Markup, you will also need to work on your strategy, connect the entities across your entire site to develop your knowledge graph, and more. In other words, you have your work cut out for you.
Schema Markup can be a tough subject for in-house employees to master, especially if they have other day-to-day search engine optimization tasks and responsibilities to manage. You could hire an external Schema Markup expert if you don’t want to divert your team from their current work.
Dependency on IT Team
To help search engines understand the content on your page, you have to implement Schema Markup using either JSON-LD, Microdata or RDFa on your pages. One of the biggest issues that many organizations face while trying to implement Schema Markup internally is the dependency on their already overworked IT team.
Some common challenges that arise include things like
- Implementation delays
- Lack of Schema Markup knowledge, resulting in coding errors
- An inability to keep the code up-to-date due to competing priorities, resulting in schema drift
If your SEO team is dependent on your IT team to execute your Schema Markup strategy, it can impact your team’s agility and time to results.
Deploying and Managing Schema Markup at Scale
If your website consists of ten pages, adding and managing Schema Markup is not insurmountable.
But when you have hundreds or even thousands of pages across your site, or you manage several sites in different languages, managing your Schema Markup can get tedious, especially if the content on your site is constantly evolving.
Many organizations struggle to manage their Schema Markup internally due to these scalability issues. Some organizations might choose to build a custom plugin to combat this issue. However, the costs involved in building and maintaining this custom solution can be significant.
Complex Web Architecture
Traditional content management systems (CMSs) like WordPress, Shopify or BigCommerce have Schema Markup plugins allowing users to add Schema Markup to their pages automatically.
However, many large enterprises tend to have a more complex web architecture, which doesn’t work with most Schema Markup plugins in the market. For instance, if you use multiple CMSs or a headless system like Salesforce Commerce Cloud, finding the optimal way to add Schema Markup to your site can be tough.
Pros of Hiring Schema App to Implement Your Schema Markup
An alternative to doing Schema Markup in-house is hiring an external Schema Markup solutions provider like Schema App to help you manage your Schema Markup. Depending on the solution, the costs can vary widely. However, an investment like this can help you overcome many of the internal implementation challenges.
The pros of hiring Schema App to manage your Schema Markup process include:
Access Schema Markup Expertise
Finding time to learn and manage Schema Markup on top of other competing priorities is tough. But if you want your Schema Markup to be effective, you need to manage your markup proactively.
At Schema App, we have over ten years of experience in Schema Markup, and unlike other SEO platforms, we focus solely on implementing and managing Schema Markup for our clients.
Many organizations struggle to hire or develop in-house Schema Markup expertise and resources to manage their Schema Markup strategy effectively. We help enterprises overcome this challenge by providing them with industry-leading technology paired with an assigned Schema Markup expert who will support your team from strategy to results.
Furthermore, we ensure your entities are connected to other entities on your site and external authoritative knowledge bases, thereby creating your very own knowledge graph. That way, search engines can understand and contextualize your content to provide searchers with more accurate results.
Your in-house SEO team no longer has to spend time learning about Schema Markup by partnering with Schema App. Instead, they can focus on what they’re good at and partner to create amazing results from their Schema Markup strategy.
Schema App made it so much easier because I don’t have to code anything or understand the Schema.org language. Everything is done automatically. As long as we agree upon what format and structure we want to use to display our content as a content team, we know that the Schema Markup will get added automatically, and we don’t have to do anything.”
– Lauren Anderson, Digital Content and Marketing Strategist, Baptist Health
Deal with Complex Web Architecture
There are few Schema Markup solutions in the market for organizations with complex web architectures.
At Schema App, we work with our customers to automate the deployment of their Schema Markup, no matter the level of complexity. Regardless of whether you have multiple tools, country sites, sites with different languages, complex web architectures, or high security and data processing requirements, we can manage it all. We’ve helped global teams like Sonova implement and manage their Schema Markup across 19 different country sites.
Our platform seamlessly integrates with any website or CMS to deploy your Schema Markup.
Reduced Dependency on IT
Many enterprises face delays and setbacks in their Schema Markup implementation because of their dependency on the internal IT team. Some internal IT teams lack the expertise to author and manage the Schema Markup, while others lack the capacity to manage it at scale.
Once you integrate your CMS with our Schema App Editor and Highlighter, we’ll ensure the markup is automatically deployed correctly to your site. Your assigned Customer Success Manager will also help you manage your markup to ensure it is semantic, accurate and aligned with best practices. You won’t need to wait for your internal IT team to create, deploy or update your markup, which reduces implementation delays.
By working with us, your team can execute their Schema Markup strategy with agility, thus achieving expedited results.
Implement Semantic Schema Markup at Scale
When you work with Schema App, your organization can overcome its scalability issues using Schema App’s Highlighter, a tool that creates templates for similar page sets and deploys the markup to those pages dynamically. It will eliminate the issue of schema drift by updating the Schema Markup as soon as the content on a page changes.
With the Highlighter, your organization can effortlessly deploy Schema Markup across thousands of pages and keep it up to date.
Develop your Knowledge Graph
One of the key elements to a successful Schema Markup strategy is the semantic aspect of it. Linking the entities on your page to other entities on your site and to external authoritative knowledge bases will help you develop a reusable knowledge graph that provides search engines with a deeper contextual understanding of your content. This allows them to better understand the meaning of things on your page and provide users with more relevant search results.
When you work with Schema App, you’ll get access to our semantic technologies and expertise to help you implement a semantic Schema Markup strategy.
During the authoring process, your CSM will leverage the relevant Schema.org properties to link the entities on your site. The Omni Linked Entity Recognition feature on the Highlighter will also automatically identify linked entities in your text content and embed any identified entities within your Schema Markup. This helps search engines reduce ambiguity in their interpretation of your content, allowing them to drive more quality traffic to your site.
After implementing Schema Markup across your site, we consolidate all your Schema markup into your very own RDF knowledge graph. All the entities you’ve identified and described using your Schema Markup will be combined into one easily accessible dataset that you can reuse for other AI purposes.
Measure Performance and ROI
When teams get bogged down by competing priorities, they often forget to measure the results of their efforts or struggle to measure the return on investment of their Schema Markup strategy.
At Schema App, we always tie our efforts back to results. Leveraging Schema Performance Analytics, we’ll perform quarterly business reviews with your team to provide detailed insights on how your Schema Markup is performing and provide your team with content recommendations to maximize the value of your strategy.
Cons of Hiring Schema App
The sole con of hiring Schema App is the cost.
Our solution may cost more than a plugin, but with over ten years of Schema Markup experience and a team of Schema Markup experts to support your strategy, we deliver measurable results to our customers through our solution.
Our ability to dynamically deploy semantic markup at scale, work within complex web architectures, develop a reusable knowledge graph and measure results set us apart from other solutions in the market.
Maximize the Impact of Your Schema Markup with Schema App
Implementing Schema Markup into your website can help search engines better understand your content and empower you to achieve rich results. However, implementing this SEO strategy can be challenging, especially if you lack the expertise or tools to manage it internally at scale.
Our Schema App team has helped organizations like Baptist Health, Excel, and Avid Technology overcome the challenges of implementing Schema Markup in-house. If you are trying to implement Schema Markup but have challenges getting the expertise or managing it at scale, we can help! Get in touch with us to learn more about our end-to-end Schema Markup solution for enterprise SEO teams.
Gracia Chua is the Demand Generation Manager at Schema App. Schema App is an end-to-end Schema Markup solution that helps enterprise SEO teams create, deploy and manage Schema Markup to stand out in search.