Google Updates Data Highlighter, Launches Structured Data Markup Helper

If you haven’t started using structured data with Google to help your websites yet, Google has introduced some new tools to make it easier for webmasters to provide structured data for their webpages.

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First, Google has updated their Data Highlighter to now cover eight types of structured data, which allows webmasters to easily tag key fields on their sites for the applicable structured data. The tool now includes the following types:

  • Events
  • Products
  • Local businesses
  • Articles
  • Software applications
  • Movies
  • Restaurants
  • TV episodes

To use the tool, you need to login to Webmaster Tools, choose your site and then click “Optimization”, then “Data Highlighter”. It gives you the option to tag a single page or multiple pages, verify the tags, and then “publish” it to Google. The process will take webmasters about 5 minutes for single pages, and 15 minutes of a series of similar pages.

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Second, for advanced webmasters, there is the Structured Data Markup Helper. You can use the helper to embed structured data right onto webpages, as the tool provides microdata annotations you copy into the page’s HTML. You can then use this information to tag similar pages on your site.

You can read a brief overview of these new tools on the Inside Search blog and a more advanced look at the tools on the Google Webmaster Central blog.

About the author

Jennifer Slegg began as a freelance writer, and turned to search engine optimization and writing content for the web in 1998. She has created numerous content-rich sites in niche markets and works with many clients on content creation, strategy, and monetization. She writes about many search industry and social media topics on her blog, JenniferSlegg.com and is a frequent speaker at search industry conferences on SEO, content marketing and content monetization. Acknowledged as the leading expert on the Google AdSense contextual advertising program, she runs JenSense, a blog dealing exclusively with contextual advertising. She is also the founder and editor of The SEM Post. She is known by many as her handle Jenstar on various webmaster forums.