Organization Schema

How to use Organization Schema

Organization structured data let’s businesses provide details about themselves to search engines in a way that machines can understand.

Describing your organization and its content in this way enables machines to treat your web pages and site as a database. It’s not just about using organizational schema; it about knowing how to properly use it. There are many helpful tools and organization schema generators. However, this article is about understanding the concept behind it. This way you can customize your structure data code for maximum benefits.

Search engine optimization (SEO) in 2023 and beyond will continue to see Google’s search ranking algorithm comprised of hundreds or thousands of ranking factors. Foundational SEO has vastly progressed beyond the basic tactics of keyword optimization, title tags, meeting image specifications, and headers. Long term SEO success now includes providing search engines with the data they look for from the Schema.org library. This article will focus on how to use Organization structured data effectively, since it is an essential schema markup type.

Table of Contents

What is Organization Schema?

The Organization Schema type details an organization key identifying elements. Primarily, this includes its logo, formal name, website URL address, social media profiles, and contact information. It may also describe the company which publishes the website, the manufacturer of a product, the employer of an author, or similar. It’s best used for organizations without brick and mortar buildings that people physically visit.

It’s a way to connect a relationship between an organization and a particular department of that organization. It further can describe an organization by allowing different URLs, logos, opening hours at various locations.

A typical use is schema for retail companies that provide products or services through multiple small businesses. This structured data type informs search engines about the differences in services and products offered, as well as the companies where they can be purchased. You can implement unique organization schemas that best relate to different company details.

Here is the most basic Organization structured data:

<script type="application/ld+json">
{
"@context": "https://schema.org",
"@type": "Organization",
"url": "http://www.example.com",
"logo": "http://www.example.com/images/logo.png"
}
</script>

Is Adding Organization Schema Important?

Adding a simple confirmation of who you are is not marginal. Search must reply on machines to manage their work load. Your organization structured data code is confirmation of your information in their own language. In edge cases, organization markup is extremely useful. It can correctly identify you from a similar organization.

Google says it is always easier if entities simply give them data. It improves accuracy when you provide the data fields. This also typically gives you more control and better benefits. It also means search engines need to rely on machine learning less. Be sure to provide consistent, correct, and clear data. It needs to make sense and explain who you are and what you do.

Synchronicity and alignment is important to build your company’s trust factor. Martin Splitt and Lizzi Sassan discuss the benefits of offering specific schema types like Organization star review ratings and more. Google search engine ingestion of structured data is expansive.

How does Data Schema Benefit Organizations?

Benefits of Organization schema:

  • It is a key help in shaping your Google’s Knowledge Graph.
  • Lets you state and clarify your business offerings and services.
  • Helps you differentiate yourself from similar organizations.
  • Makes it easier to describe complex or abstract relationships.
  • Assists in communicating important information that presents an organization’s data on the SERPs in an attractive format.
  • Aids easy crawling and indexing by search engines for important pages supporting the organization.
  • Informs Google how to attribute your website and content to a known entity, such as your business or brand.
  • Enriches your analytics data by allowing deeper analysis of your organization’s SERP performance.

How to write schema markup for organization?

It easy to simply rely on a structured data plugin and schema generation tools to write code. While they automatically create your structured data code, most lack sufficient guidance on steps, use cases, and validation processes. Custom coding your organization schema markup is best.

Follow and observe what your structured data code is outputting; it will assist in making better decisions using your own person experience. You business entity can make the best use of schema when you understand it’s outcome and benefits.

Google offers you options between the general organization type and more specific types. When you can, choose the more specific type.

COMMOM ORGANIZATION STRUCTURED DATA TYPES & PROPERTIES

The use of specific organization structured data types helps to further define your company.

Types of Organization structured data markup refine the business niche similar to how different kinds of articles are distinguished within publishing organizations. It assists the Semantic Search Question and Answer machine information retrieval. If you don’t provide it, search engines will assume it by taking details from other sources. Here you can also use “genre” field, which mimics using “keywords” and works in a tagging-like structure.

Implementing organization structured data correctly is important.

The organization type permits a company to better described itself as a Thing. It is often a nested component of a bigger structured data, since a structured data script can contain multiple structured data types.

Below are several that are most common.

LocalBusiness Schema is a type of Organization Markup

Because there is also Local Business schema markup, a lot of the platforms and businesses we’ve spoken with feel unclear.

It is a way any local business can inform search engines of your website’s relationship to people searching nearby. This schema is especially helpful as Google continues updating its Local Search algorithms. LocalBusiness schema assists in prioritizing websites for businesses located near the searcher’s device. It is effective whether or not they include location keywords such as “near me” or the city name.

The schema.org properties list shows which properties are added by LocalBusiness in addition to the properties it inherits from Organization.

Schema.org’s NewsMediaOrganization & EducationalOrganization Types

The structured data type NewsMediaOrganization identifies the organization of the news publisher and is a more specific type from the type Organization. It helps a newspaper or TV station improve their findability on the Semantic Web.

Currently, “This term is proposed for full integration into Schema.org, pending implementation feedback and adoption from applications and websites,” according to their site.

EducationalOrganization is typically a School such as HighSchool, MiddleSchool, CollegeOrUniversity, or Preschool.

{
"@context": "https://schema.org",
"@type": "EducationalOrganization",
"address": {
"@type": "PostalAddress",
"addressLocality": "country",
"addressRegion": "state",
"postalCode": "zipcode",
"streetAddress": "name of road"
},
"alumni": [
{
"@type": "Person",
"name": "John Doe"
},
{
"@type": "Person",
"name": "Nary Smith"
}
],
"name": "Specific School"
}

Schema.org’s MedicalOrganization & GovernmentOrganization Types

MedicalOrganization encompasses companies (physical or not), such as hospital, institution, lab, or clinic. In addition to the many properties from Organization, it has the following unique properties:

Property Expected Type Description
Properties from MedicalOrganization
healthPlanNetworkId Text Name or unique ID of network. (Networks are often reused across different insurance plans).
isAcceptingNewPatients Boolean Whether the provider is accepting new patients.
medicalSpecialty MedicalSpecialty A medical specialty of the provider.

While several sub MedicalOrganization types are pending, currently here are additional, approved, specific types:

  • Dentist
  • DiagnosticLab
  • Hospital
  • MedicalClinic
  • Pharmacy
  • Physician
  • VeterinaryCare

GovernmentOrganization is clearly a governmental organization or agency. Our two favorite attributes to include are the EducationalOccupationalCredential property, the NonprofitType property.

Schema.org’s OnlineBusiness & OnlineStore Structured Data Types

It’s best if you gain richly built, custom, sophisticated structured data markup server side. Additionally, audit your site’s performance to find how to utilize JavaScript integration for faster rendering time. You want to wisely select the best schema markup type for each page. Avoid code bloat that may slow page rendering.

It’s exciting that Google often adds more context to their structured data error reporting in Google Search console. It nicely assists in schema audit checking when nesting and implementing advanced schema markup. It helps to find and fix product schema markup errors.

Schema.org v14 was released March 13, 2022. Note pending types for future opportunities. Both OnlineBusiness and OnlineStore give coders more robust and specific Organization markup for virtual online businesses.

What is the Correct Hierarchy of Elements for Organization Database Schema?

You can use WebSite > publisher > Organization for a correct hierarchy of elements.

Nested Organization Structured Data example:

  • Within a university “course” – helps to specify the name of the school offering the course.
  • Recipe Structured Data And Organization Data Type: Google’s documentation includes a recommended property for the author or organization for each recipe structured data.

Course Example From Google:

<script type="application/ld+json">
{
"@context": "https://schema.org",
"@type": "Course",
"name": "Introduction to Computer Science and Programming",
"description": "Introductory CS course laying out the basics.",
"provider": {
"@type": "Organization",
"name": "University of Technology - Eureka",
"sameAs": "http://www.ut-eureka.edu"
}
}
</script>

If the article specifies an expert person as author then I favor using the person property type for the author. When one individual isn’t credited with a content piece, then the organization structured data type works. Where organization structured data type is applied, the rich results will display the organization’s name as the author of the content.

Check the suitability of using embedded nodes, or multiple script blocks, per the JSON-LD specification. Then be sure to use validation tools and watch your Google Search Console reports for enhancements and errors.

JSON-LD Organization Markup

While Microformats have been heavily used by site developers to describe properties of businesses and organizations; JSON-LD is currently your best option.

JSON-LD is different from microdata and microformats because isn’t implemented by adding properties or classes to HTML markup. Instead, machine-readable code is added to the page as one or more standalone blobs of JavaScript Object Notation. Your Organization code contains identifying descriptions of the entities on the specific web page, and their relationships.

Because the implementation isn’t tied directly to the HTML structure of the page, it can be much easier to describe complex or abstract relationships, as well as representing information which isn’t readily available in the human-readable content of the page.

“This allows organizations that have already deployed large JSON-based infrastructure to use JSON-LD’s features in a way that is not disruptive to their day-to-day operations and is transparent to their current customers. However, there are times where mapping JSON to a graph representation is a complex undertaking. In these instances, rather than extending JSON-LD to support esoteric use cases, we chose not to support the use case. While Zero Edits is a design goal, it is not always possible without adding great complexity to the language. JSON-LD focuses on simplicity when possible.” – [1]

What is the “@id”: “organization.com”?

It is the specific URL identifier for the company. In addition to other uses, it is your companies unique identifier for your Knowledge Graph entity. It needs to be an explicit, permanent reference for your company.

Many simply use their domain or entity home. My current preference is to use https://www.example.com/#organization rather than just your domain name. NOTE: It doesn’t need to actual exist on the web in order to work as a unique identifier.

One of the most impactful use-cases for Organization structured data is declaring related entities using sameAs. This enables building a deeper understanding of a thing. This lets you cross-reference information from multiple locations and formats which builds a richer understanding of your organization entity.

Here are examples of sameAs implementation and how they create relational nodes:

Bar chart showing the usage of sameAs declarations on pages across the web. Social Profiles are prominent:

Page Percentage
facebook.com occurs on 4.26%
instagram.com occurs on 2.74%
twitter.com occurs on 2.46%
youtube.com occurs on 1.78%
linkedin.com occurs on 1.04%
pinterest.com occurs on 0.60%
google.com occurs on 0.51%
wikidata.org occurs on 0.12%
wikipedia.org occurs on 0.11%
tumblr.com occurs on 0.08%
uptodown.io occurs on 0.10%
vk.com occurs on 0.08%
soundcloud.com occurs on 0.04%
vimeo.com occurs on 0.03%

According to Jono Alderson, “The sameAs property accounts for 1.60% of all JSON-LD markup and is present on 13.03% of pages”. His Web Almanac Nov 16, 2021 Part I Chapter 4 Structured Data article reveals that the most common values of the sameAs property are social media platforms and official, trusted sources (such as wikipedia.org).

This schema property is primarily used to identify the social media accounts of websites and businesses; likely motivated by Google’s historical reliance on this data as an input for managing knowledge panels in their search results. However, this requirement was deprecated in 2019. Meaning, this data set is likely to alter in coming years as Google updates its structured data requirements.

Where to place organization schema markup?

Organization Structured Data should not be added to every page of a website. It is best suited for the main company pages; such as the homepage, contact page, or the about us page. Ideally, the code should be placed in the <head> section of the page’s code. However, it can be added to the body of your page’s content. Some place it in the footer.

In the Jan 22, 2019 After Hours Google hangout, near the 51:36 minute mark, John Mueller stated:

“As far as I know it’s just the home page… it doesn’t matter for us as much because we need to be able to find it on somewhere like the home page or the contact page.

 

But if we have it elsewhere then it doesn’t change anything for us.

 

So, the big thing to not compare it to is the review markup, where we sometimes see people put company review on all pages of the website with the hope of getting stars on the search results of every page on their site and that would be bad.

 

But the contact information, if you have that marked up, then it’s fine. I don’t see a problem with that.”

Avoid over-indexed information that is better found on specific pages.

What do enhanced organization snippets look like?

A knowledge graph card is the block displayed on the right hand side of a search engine result page. It basically summarizes an organization. They are hard to earned. It’s easier if you are a well known brand like Amazon and Bentley Motors Limited and for online businesses such as Blue Cross Blue Shield. Bentley has the owner, founder, CEO, and parent organizations all listed. As well, the year it is founded displays and their latest car models. Each of these entities can be explained within your organization schema code.

The image above shows what it looks like.

Organization Schema Informs Google About your Company

You are directly informing your Google Knowledge Panel in search results by implementing this essential schema type. While there are many, below we list five that you should be sure to include.

1. Organization Logo Structured Data

Your organization’s logo in search results and Google knowledge panel.

This structured data type aids Google in matching a logo to an organization’s website and the organization itself. It’s a strong signal to Google to use your specified logo in their knowledge panel. The tech giant is also displaying logos and other information about the site in product carousels, Top Stories, and other special panels in search results.

There are several cornerstone organizational relationships, such as WebPage > isPartOf > WebSite and Organization > logo > ImageObject, which is an important brand relationship.

Google requests that you specify the logo image you want Google Search to use for your organization’s in Search results and in the Google knowledge panel. “Google Search uses the markup in the use case example to recognize the image to use as the organization’s logo. This ensures that, when possible, the image appears in search results about the company. Markup like this is a strong signal to Google Search algorithms to show this image in knowledge panels,” it says. [3]

2. Organization’s Star Review Feature

To increase your chances of gaining a review snippet for your organization, you must adhere to additional guidelines.

Google support tells us that “Pages using LocalBusiness or any other type of Organization structured data are ineligible for star review feature if the entity being reviewed controls the reviews about itself. For example, a review about entity A is placed on the website of entity A, either directly in their structured data or through an embedded third-party widget.” [4]

3. Nested Markup with Contact Details

Make it easy for current and potential customers to contact you. Here is a code example:

<script type="application/ld+json">
{ "@context" : "https://schema.org",
  "@type" : "Organization",
  "url" : "http://www.your-company-site.com",
  "contactPoint" : [
    { "@type" : "ContactPoint",
      "telephone" : "+1-301-222-1212",
      "contactType" : "customer service"
    } ] }
</script>

You can also include areaServed, a TollFree option, and availableLanguage. This may assist with maps and other queries with local intent.

4. Organization Opening Hours Structured Data

Include the opening hours of your company in a concurrent and logically structure for local business organizations. Using the JSON-LD format allows your to best describe your details independently of your HTML markup.

Using 3rd party schema tools renders you less flexible in applying custom schema markup for industry specific domains. You can use independent schema leveraged to build content models which better assist mappings between elements. By crafting comprehensive content models, types, and content prototypes, in addition to information architecture, better content relational nodes are established. JSON-LD from Schema.org and supported by Google for rich results is preferred.

Here is example code:

<div>
  <h1>Something Pharmacy</h1>
  <p>Meeting your pharmaceutical needs in our drugstore.</p>
  <p>Open: Monday-Thursday 9am-noon</p>
  <p>Phone: (800)555-1234</p>
</div>

“You can enhance the appearance and coverage of your official website and presence in Search results by first establishing it with Google. This makes it easier for users to recognize your official site and reach information you provide more easily when they search.

 

Google offers a variety of ways to help you provide key business details so that they show up for users in Search results. This guide describes how to make your businesses location, official site, and content info available for results, Google knowledge panel, and Google Maps.” [2]

5. Add Social Profile Structured Data

You social profiles help establish your business entity across the web. It validates who you are, helps establish your brand, and what you are known for. This helps to establish your Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness or E-A-T, as we’ve come to know it.

Here is example code of how to add your organization’s social profiles:

<script type="application/ld+json">
{
  "@context" : "http://schema.org",
  "@type" : "Organization",
  "name" : "Vanhoutte Inc.",
  "url" : "company.com",
  "sameAs" : [
    "https://www.facebook.com/your-profile",
    "https://twitter.com/yourProfile",
    "https://LinkedIn.com/your_profile"
  ]
}
</script>

Google’s Structured Data Guidelines on Rich Results Eligibility

You can use whatever structured data you please. Just be aware that not all of that code will earn you coveted rich results in Google SERPs. The Google Search Central documentation is definitive for Google Search behavior. Meeting its requirements ensures that organizational information is eligible for display. [5]

Start with and/or stick to Google’s schema property recommendations. By paying attention to their guidelines for best practices, you are earning the right to perform better in SERPs. By complying with recommended structured data, you are providing needed data to best communicate what your company is about and possibly gain an enhanced listing in people’s Google search results.

Once you have your basic Organization schema in place, you can venture into becoming creative at building a more robust structured data script using recommended properties.

It is interesting to watch the pending schema types. For example, at this time ArchiveOrganization is among them. Follow along at schema.org/docs/pending.home.html.

Summary

Organization Structured Data is important, powerful, and simple to implement. Using custom, advanced structured data requires a willingness on the part of development, content writers, and SEO teams to move from basic optimization methods. A schema code expert can best manage this aspect.

Schema Markup is essential to further enhance your most important topics, products, and services. Call 651-206-2410 and request a Organization Schema Markup Audit and Optimization Services

 

[1] www.w3.org/TR/json-ld11

[2] developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/structured-data/logo

[3] developers.google.com/search/docs/beginner/establish-business-details

[4] support.google.com/webmasters/thread/162305758/product-review-schema-markup

[5] developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/structured-data/sd-policies




Jeannie Hill:

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