Google Updates Search Algorithm to Highlight Better Quality Product Reviews

This could be a relevant consideration for your SEO approach.

This week, as part of its regular search algorithm tweaks, Google has provided an overview of how it’s looking to improve the quality of the reviews that it displays within Search results.

As explained by Google:

Over the past year, we’ve been working to improve the product reviews we display in Search. Our first updates were designed to, among other things, help ensure reviews come from people who demonstrate expert knowledge and first-hand research about products. [This latest] update builds on this work to make sure that product reviews in Search meet certain criteria.”

In order to give searchers the best review insights, Google’s now looking to highlight product reviews that:

  • Include helpful in-depth details, like the benefits or drawbacks of a certain item, specifics on how a product performs or how the product differs from previous versions
  • Come from people who have actually used the products, and show what the product is physically like or how it’s used
  • Include unique information beyond what the manufacturer provides — like visuals, audio or links to other content detailing the reviewer’s experience
  • Cover comparable products, or explain what sets a product apart from its competitors

Of course, you as the brand have limited control over what people write in their product reviews, but if you’re using a legitimate review service or looking to include customer testimonials, or even within influencer marketing campaigns, these notes could help to direct your approach to maximizing review performance.

In general, these are some pretty good guidelines for the types of reviews you want anyway, and if you’re looking to call on your top brand advocates to post about your business/products, this is the type of insight you’d want to elicit.

Again, you can’t dictate what people say, as such, but you can provide guidance when calling for feedback, and working on your own review-related promotions.

If you’re looking for more guidance on this, Google has also published a full overview of ‘How to Write Quality Reviews’ in alignment with what it’s looking to showcase in its products.

Some helpful notes, worth considering in your broader marketing effort.

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