A recent change in the Google review algorithm aims to weed out self-serving and misleading online reviews.

Online reviews and star ratings are critical for businesses and consumers in today’s internet-based consumer environment. Often the first place consumers will look when searching for a product or service they’re interested in buying is to the online reviews and ratings from other customers. 

While this helpful and trustworthy word-of-mouth methodology has been around for years on the internet, certain aspects of it will be limited moving forward as some nefarious players have compromised the entire system for everyone. 

What happened?

A number of businesses have been either posting false reviews or only providing highly-rated reviews about their products and services online. 

In response to this issue, Google will no longer allow Self-Serving Reviews to appear in the search results. In their release, Google stated: 

“To make them more helpful and meaningful, we are now introducing algorithmic updates to reviews in rich results. This also addresses some of the invalid or misleading implementations webmasters have flagged to us.”

What are Review Rich Results?

Review rich results are the stars and number of ratings listed within a Google search result. Below you'll see an example of these results. 

review-rich-results-example (1)

What will be allowed moving forward? 

Schema Types included in Google UpdateGoogle announced they have limited the pool of schema types that have the ability to trigger review rich results when conducting a search. 

schema.org/Book | schema.org/Course | schema.org/CreativeWorkSeason | schema.org/CreativeWorkSeries | schema.org/Episode | schema.org/Event | schema.org/Gameschema.org/HowTo | schema.org/LocalBusiness |  schema.org/MediaObject | schema.org/Movie | schema.org/MusicPlaylist  | schema.org/MusicRecording | schema.org/Organization | schema.org/Product | schema.org/Recipe | schema.org/SoftwareApplication

How will this impact reviews moving forward?

While this is certainly a major change within Google, it will help significantly in terms of maintaining the legitimacy of online reviews and allowing consumers to have confidence that the reviews they’re using to make a purchase decision will be accurate and trustworthy. 

Fortunately for XAmplifier clients, this will not impact their reviews showing up in search as we have always followed the guidelines laid out by Google. Additionally, these algorithm changes are something that we anticipated and have been prepared for in advance. 

For more information on these changes to the Google algorithm, get in touch with XAmplifier and we’ll be happy to discuss how we can ensure your reviews will remain visible on Google search results. 

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