[Solution] Better Schema Markup for WooCommerce

Woo logo.

Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool or Google’s Search Console for website owners may report the following errors for the default Schema markup offered by WooCommerce:

  • The aggregateRating field is recommended.
  • The brand field is recommended.
  • The review field is recommended.
  • This Product is missing a global identifier (e.g. isbn, mpn or gtin8).
  • No global identifier provided (e.g. gtin mpn isbn).
  • Missing field “businessDays”.
  • Missing field “cutoffTime”.
  • Missing field “deliveryTime”.

I’ve written a step-by-step guide for WooCommerce users that explains these issues and offers an easy solution.

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[Solution] Google Reports Missing “Product Identifier” for WooCommerce Products

WPSSO + WooCommerce logos.

WooCommerce manages information on product Availability (aka Stock), Prices, SKU, etc., but additional WooCommerce product attributes must be created to provide more product information for Google.

The WPSSO Core Pro plugin (and its WPSSO Schema JSON-LD Markup Pro add-on), for example, include a variety of WooCommerce product attribute values in its Schema markup, including the product Brand, Color, Condition, EAN, GTIN-8, GTIN-12, GTIN-13, GTIN-14, ISBN, Material, MPN (aka Manufacturer Part Number), Size, and Gender.

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Why WordPress Image Sizes for Social Sharing and SEO?

All social and SEO plugins – except one that I know of – use the full size image URL from the WordPress media library when adding image meta tags to the webpage (ie. og:image, twitter:image, etc.), and/or adding images to Schema JSON-LD markup for the webpage. This can be problematic for several reasons…

  1. The image resolution may be too small.
  2. The image resolution may be too large and the file size too big.
  3. The aspect ratio (width or height) may exceed a maximum value.
  4. The image displayed on the social / search site is center cropped.

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WPBakery Bug in Change Handler

February 17th, 2020 UpdateAlthough no specific entry was added in the WP Bakery changelog, it has been reported that this bug is now fixed in the current WPBakery version 6.1.0 release.

The WPBakery (aka Visual Composer) changeHandler function uses the “vc.accordion” data attribute without first checking for it’s existence. Any plugin or theme using a jQuery show / hide event trigger will trip this bug, and the post editing page will fail to load properly.

I’ve posted a bug report to the Visual Composer channel on Slack, but the channel does not seem to be read by WPBakery employees, so this bug may continue to go unfixed. If you are a WPBakery customer affected by this issue, you may want to report the bug to WPBakery.

The unminified WPBakery code looks like this – notice that the data("vc.accordion") attribute is being used here without first checking if the attribute actually exists or not.

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Social and SEO Plugins with Quality Assurance Features

Most social and SEO plugins can use a post’s featured image, or offer a way to select a custom social image, but do little else to make sure an image is suitable for social sharing – they assume the article author / editor is aware of each social site’s image requirements (minimum and maximum image resolution, aspect ratio, and maximum image file size) and has selected an appropriate image. For example, Facebook requires that all images be larger than 200x200px, preferably 600x315px, or (even better) 1200x630px for high-resolution displays like retina laptops and phones, have an aspect ratio no wider / taller than 3:1, and less than 8 MB in size. Twitter and Google also have their own requirements, which are different than Facebook’s.

Using a social or SEO plugin that creates resized images from the originals you upload, and checks those resized images to make sure they conform to the requirements of each social site, is only part of a complete Quality Assurance solution. All too often, themes also include a few basic social meta tags in their templates (they shouldn’t, but they often do), that prevent social crawlers from reading your webpage meta tags correctly – some meta tags should never be duplicated (Facebook, for example, can reject all meta tags because of a single duplicate), or the theme may include the full size featured image before all other meta tags, so the wrong image will be used for social shares (this is fairly common). If your social or SEO plugin does not check for duplicate meta tags, you may never realize that you have a problem.

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Inherit Featured and Custom Meta Images from Parents

Does your website use parent pages and/or categories? Unless you have a very simple site, you’ve probably organized your WordPress pages and categories as parents with child pages / categories.

And have you defined a featured image for a parent page and wished its children used the same featured image automatically?

How about social and search optimization images? If you’re using the WPSSO Core plugin — and have selected a custom image for Facebook, Google, Twitter, and/or Pinterest — would you like the children of that page and/or category to inherit those custom images automatically?

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Add Meta Tags and Schema JSON-LD to the REST API

A new Free add-on for the WPSSO Core plugin has been released. The WPSSO REST API (aka WPSSO REST) add-on includes a head element in the WordPress REST API query result to provide an html, json, and parts array.

  • The html array includes the HTML formatted meta tags and Schema JSON-LD (aka LD+JSON) scripts, as they appear in the webpage head section.
  • The json array provides Schema JSON-LD (aka LD+JSON) scripts in their decoded format.
  • The parts array offers HTML meta tag attributes (aka “the parts”) as arrays, making it easier to find / use specific meta tag values.

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[Solution] WordPress Creates Fuzzy Thumbnails

Did you know that WordPress creates thumbnails from images you upload?

You may have already known this — not everyone does, but most WordPress users are aware of this (or at least should be).

Did you also know that all resized images must be sharpened?

This is common knowledge for photography and website design professionals, but probably not for the majority of WordPress users.

And did you also know that WordPress does not sharpen resized images?

I bet that you didn’t know that one… not many people do. ;-)

WordPress creates several different thumbnail / resized images by default (see WordPress Settings > Media page for details) and potentially several more, depending on your theme and plugin settings. It’s not uncommon, for example, for WordPress to create a half-dozen (or more) images from the original image you upload. And in all cases, WordPress does not sharpen or make any adjustments to the resized image it creates!

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