Latest Google’s Update And FAQ + How-To Rich Results –
On 8th August 2023, Google announced significant changes to its algorithm, specifically affecting the visibility and functionality of FAQ and How-To Rich Results. These modifications are part of Google’s ongoing commitment to delivering a streamlined, user-friendly search experience. This article will delve into the specifics of these changes, their implications for website owners, and the adjustments in Search Console reporting.
The Changes: An Overview
The primary alterations concern the use of FAQ and How-To structured data. The visibility of FAQ Rich Results, derived from FAQ-Page structured data, will be significantly reduced. These results will now only be displayed for Authoritative Health and Government websites recognised for their credibility. For all other websites, this rich result will no longer be a regular feature. However, sites may automatically qualify for this treatment based on their eligibility.
“While you can drop this structured data from your site, there’s no need to proactively remove it. Structured data that’s not being used does not cause problems for Search, but also has no visible effects on Google Search”.– Google Search Advocate John Mueller
Google advises reduced visibility for How-To Rich Results:
Rich Results for How-To guides, which are based on structured data, will only be visible to users accessing a website from a desktop computer and not on mobile devices. It is important to note that Google indexes the mobile version of a website for Mobile indexing. To ensure that How-To Rich Results are displayed on desktops, the mobile version of the website must contain the necessary markup.
Changes in Search Console Reporting
These changes will also reflect in the Search Console reporting for your website. Specifically, you may notice alterations in the metrics displayed for FAQ and HowTo search appearances in the performance report. Additionally, there may be changes in the number of impressions reported in the relevant enhancement reports.
However, it’s important to note that these changes do not affect the number of items reported in enhancement reports. The search appearances and reports will continue to exist in Search Console for now.
Rolling Out Globally:
This update was rolled out globally across all languages and countries within a week of the announcement by Google on 8th August 2023. It’s important to clarify that this should not be perceived as a ranking change and hence won’t be listed on the Search Status Dashboard. There will also be a small holdback experiment implying that some users may not witness these changes immediately.
Google’s recent algorithm changes mark a significant shift in how FAQ and HowTo rich results are displayed and function. While these changes primarily affect website owners using these structured data types, they also reflect Google’s “ongoing commitment to refining its search experience.”
Should you have any queries or concerns regarding these changes, feel free to reach out via Google’s Search Central help community or through their social media channels. As we navigate through these changes together, it’s essential to stay informed and adapt our strategies accordingly.
- Julie Oswin
Creative Design Agency UK