What is structured content and what are the benefits?
Your content is important. Not only to you but to your audience. So much so that if you don't get it right your organic rankings may slump, your audience will become disengaged, and your conversions take a hit.
Sitecore Optimisation Consultant MVP Strategist
Planning your digital content is vital for all the above to succeed. So how do you go about ensuring your content hits all the right notes?
Content can be many things. From images and documents to videos and infographics, everything you produce can be used in more than one channel at the same time. That's why it's important your content marketing team considers structuring your content so it can be as efficient as possible.
What is structured content?
In essence, structured content involves breaking content down into ‘atomic’ or component parts and separating it from the presentation format.
It’s flexible and adaptable and can be used in different ways without needing to be manually reformatted.
This ensures systems can identify each element of your content. And by doing so can later build, repurpose, and personalise content for different users on different touchpoints.
This helps with presenting information to your audience in a way that’s relevant and easier to consume.
For example, when structured properly, you can repurpose a video into a blog post, white paper or even a landing page. Its flexibility and adaptability mean you can use it in different ways.
How to use structured content?
To use structured content, you'll need to create a content model that defines the different types of content you want to distribute, and how each piece relates to each other.
This could include titles, headings, descriptions, images, videos, infographics and more. Once you have your content model in place, you can start creating your content.
Structured content has a massive impact on your SEO. It creates context and informs search engines on authority and relevance - meaning you’ll rank higher in organic search results.
For example, Schema markup is a structured content approach that businesses use to gain more visibility in search results. When you see information on a business with a photo, reviews etc. that's a schema.
When to use structured content?
Structured content can be used in a variety of contexts, but there are some where it's particularly useful.
For example, if you create a lot of content across different channels, structured content can help to streamline your content creation and distribution processes. Similarly, if you have a large and complex website or application, structured content can help to make it easier to manage and update your content over time.
Benefits of structured content
Easy to reuse/repurpose: If you're holding a webinar, you can use that same structure to create blog posts, video shorts, infographics and more for different platforms or devices. For instance, you might create a version that is optimised for mobile devices or one that is designed to be used in an email newsletter.
Saves you time and effort: By creating content that is structured in a flexible and adaptable way, you can avoid having to painstakingly reformat it every time you want to use it in a different context. This can be especially problematic if you run larger businesses that create loads of content across different channels and platforms.
Improves consistency and accuracy: By creating a content model that defines the different types of content you'll be creating and how they relate to each other, you can ensure that your content is consistent in terms of style, tone, and formatting. This can be especially important for brands that need to maintain a consistent voice across different channels and platforms.
Improves SEO: Using schemas make it easier for search engines to find and index your content. This improves your search engine rankings, drives more traffic to your website and can positively influence conversions.
Promotes collaboration: If you are working with a team of content creators or editors' collaboration is key. By creating a content model that defines the different types of content, everyone on your team is on the same page in terms of how content should be structured and formatted.
If you’re a digital marketer or content creator, using a structured content approach is a powerful way to get the right content out to your audience on an omnichannel level.
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