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In an extension to ongoing changes in order to 'simplify' the search results, Google have now removed the How-To rich result for users on mobile devices (it will still be shown for desktop users). Note that with mobile indexing, Google indexes the mobile version of a website as the basis for indexing: to have How-To rich results shown on desktop, the mobile version of your website must include the appropriate markup.
Google announced they are reducing the visibility of FAQ rich results - now, rich results will only be shown for well-known, authoritative government and health websites. For all other sites, this rich result will no longer be shown regularly.
Versions 16-22 released in comparatively quick succession, with a range of smaller fixes and updates, including:
Google updated the list of countries where the Event search experience is available to only include those where users can see that experience. The previous list also included regions where users could see events in Knowledge Panels.
Google updated their documentation for the Video search feature, changing the description property from required to only recommended (though it's still strongly recommended to help Google better understand the content of your video).
As a result, the missing description issue will no longer appear as a critical issue in Google Search Console, and you may see an increase in the number of valid Video structured data items in the Video enhancement report.
Google updated the Product search feature documentation to detail the properties you can add to make your merchant listing eligible to show return policy information, including return fees and the window of time to return a product.
Google updated their Learning Video search feature documentation, adding a clarification for the required property educationalAlignment.
Now there is a new statement about including multiple values:
"While you may provide multiple educationalAlignment values, it is not guaranteed that all of these values will be used for Learning Video features. If multiple values are provided, and the feature can only use one educationalAlignment value, the feature uses the first value that you provide."
The job search experience is available on Google across different regions of the world. They removed support for South Korea from the region availability - read this article for an explanation why.
Google updated the documentation regarding the recommended property of text ("the text of the question that's being solved in the video"), which previously contained a red box stating 'The text property is required if the learningResourceType property is set to Problem walkthrough.' This has now been removed, so text falls back to just being a recommended property for all types of learning video.
Google updated the documentation to clarify which guidelines you need to follow in order to be eligible for rich results, and they specifically linked out to a list of structured data issues, which can result in a manual action.
Key moments is an enhancement feature for Video rich results, which allows users to navigate video segments like chapters in a book. If your video is hosted on your web page, you can enable key moments by using SeekToAction structured data. Google updated the documentation to clarify the languages this is supported for: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Chinese, French, Japanese, German, Turkish, Korean, Dutch, and Russian.
Google updated the Review snippet structured data to recommend using dot separators for decimal ratings. If you're currently using comma separators for decimal ratings in your markup, you'll still be eligible for review snippets. They do however recommend that you update your markup for a more accurate interpretation.
Changes in Core section:
Changes in Health-lifesci section:
Changes in Pending section:
Google added new documentation which describes how you can use WebSite structured data to indicate your preferred site name, which currently appear in mobile Google Search results for the following languages: English, French, Japanese, and German.
They clarified that the generation of site names on the Google Search results page is completely automated and takes into account both the content of a site and references to it that appear on the web.
They use a number of sources from a site's homepage to automatically determine site names, including:
You can help improve the quality of the site name that's displayed for your page by adding WebSite structured data.
Google made a significant change to the Image License search feature, and changed the name of the search feature to Image metadata. Previously it could only be used on licensable images; by specifying license information for the images on your website through structured data, the image can display with a 'Licensable' badge on image thumbnails in Google Images.
Now, image metadata can be added for any image, so the required property that was previously licenseis now 'either creator or creditText or copyrightNotice or license.'
A number of additional recommended properties have also been added to support this:
Google has expanded the eligibility for enhanced product experiences in Google Search through the use of Product structured data, which were previously only open to Merchant Center users. To help make the requirements easier to understand, they have also made significant updates to the Product structured data documentation.
The documentation changes include clarification on the different types of shopping experiences available and the result enhancements you can use to help your content to stand out in search results.
They also have expanded the examples to include:
Google re-added the itemReviewed.datePublished property. This is a recommended property that was apparently removed accidentally as part of the previous update to the Fact Check structured data documentation (September 9th 2022).
Google updated the Education Q&A structured data documentation, adding content guidelines;
Google updated the Article structured data documentation to reflect that Article markup is open to all types of pages (as announced in 2020 with the page experience update).
The Product documentation includes the recommended property of gtin (Global Trade Identification Number) as an applicable global identifier. Google added the gtin12 property, which apparently had been supported previously, so this is a documentation change only. They also clarified that you can use the generic gtin property for all GTINs, but they recommend that you use the most specific one if possible.
The Product documentation includes the recommended property of gtin (Global Trade Identification Number) as an applicable global identifier. Google updated the documentation to clarify that the GTIN value must be in the numerical form, as they do not support the URL form for GTINs.