Structured Data - Change History & Alerts

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Structured Data Change History Timeline

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August 2022
10

Clarification added to a recommended property for Product rich result

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.

08

Clarification added to a recommended property for Product rich result

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.

05

Pros and cons added as potential enhancement for Product rich results

Google added quite a significant amount of new documentation for the Product search feature, clarifying how you can explicitly define the pros and cons of a product, which can then show up in the search results as an enhancement.

Currently only editorial product review pages are eligible for the pros and cons appearance in Search, not merchant product pages or customer product reviews.

July 2022
04

Eligibility clarification for the Course rich result

Google modified their documentation to clarify that you must mark up at least three courses to be eligible for the Course rich result;

  • The courses can be on separate detail pages, or in an all-in-one page.
  • You must add Carousel markup to either a summary page or an all-in-one page (and they now provide an example for each of these).

This is not a new requirement; it was previously only documented in the Carousel documentation.

June 2022
22

Clarification on a required property for Job Posting rich results

One of the required properties for JobPosting is jobLocation, and Google have just updated their documentation to clarify that you must also include the addressCountry property.

17

Clarification to Product documentation

Google updated their documentation for the Product rich result, to clarify that Product rich results are only supported for pages that focus on a single product - including product variants where each product variant has a distinct URL.

01

New Rich Result for Learning Video

This is a brand new rich result for websites that provide academic educational videos, aimed at helping students and teachers find learning-based video content.

Examples of acceptable content types include:

  • Concept overview: The video is explaining a topic or concept.
  • Problem walkthrough: The video shows the method or steps to solve an academic problem, such as a math or science word problem.
  • Real life application: The video shows how a concept is applied or used in real life.
  • Activity: The video shows a demonstration or application of a learning activity, such as an example, an improv game, a concept map, a peer review, or a forced debate.
  • Science experiment: The video shows a science experiment.
  • Lecture: The video shows a class, lecture, or webinar.
  • How-to: The video provides a method or series of steps to do something. For video that are solving procedural STEM problems, use the Problem walkthrough type.
  • Tips: The video is sharing tips and tricks.
  • Professional learning: The video teaches skills related to job training.

The Learning Video rich result is available in English in all regions where Google Search is available. The feature is only available when searching for academic learning content on desktop and mobile.

May 2022
10

New Rich Result for Education Q&A

This is a brand new rich result for websites that provide educational content, in addition to the Practice problems and Math solvers rich results added in March 2021. If you have flashcard pages, you can help students better find answers to educational questions by adding Quiz structured data to your flashcard pages. Adding structured data makes your content eligible to appear in the Education Q&A carousel in Google Search results, Google Assistant, and Google Lens results.

The Education Q&A carousel is available in English in all regions where Google Search is available. The feature is only available when searching for education-related topics on desktop and mobile.

March 2022
17

Schema v14.0 released

Changes to the Core section:

Additionally, changes made to the 'Pending' section.

January 2022
27

Updated requirements on the interest form in the Books documentation

Google updated the 'register your interest' form, where online retailers and libraries can apply for participation in the Book Action Google Search feature.

20

Note added to documentation for Product rich result

Google added a small note to the structured data type definitions for Product, to clarify how to markup a Car:

"Currently Car is not supported automatically as a subtype of Product. So for now, you will need to include both Car and Product types if you would like to attach ratings to it and be eligible for the Search feature."

18

Modified recommended property guidance for Recipe rich result

Google updated their documentation for the Recipe search feature, changing the descriptions for three recommended properties: cookTime, prepTime and totalTime.

In the descriptions for these properties, this sentence has been removed: 'You can use min and max as child elements to specify a range of time.'

Currently, the only supported method is an exact time; time ranges aren't supported. If you're currently specifying a time range and you'd like Google to better understand your time values, they recommend updating that value in your structured data to a single value (for example, "cookTime": "PT30M").

November 2021
17

Clarification to Job Posting documentation

Not announced by Google, they made additions in multiple places to the Job Posting documentation, to add greater clarity in terms of how to use certain properties:

  • hiringOrganization - If the organization is hiring anonymously (for example, a staffing agency on behalf of an anonymous employer or an employer directly on your platform), use the confidential value.
  • directApply - You likely offer a direct apply experience if the job posting includes instructions on how to apply (for example, the job posting lists the email address, phone number, or physical address where they can submit the application) or directly schedule an interview with an employer. These instructions must be for directly contacting the actual company hiring for the job, or their representative.

They also added clarification under the section 'Content doesn't match the structured data':

"Another example is when the job salary is in the markup but not on the job page. This is also a violation of the content guidelines, as all information in the markup must be visible on the job page."

Resources

16

Guideline added for a required property for the Logo rich result

Google added an additional guideline for the required logo property in their documentation, stating the following:

"Make sure the image looks how you intend it to look on a purely white background (for example, if the logo is mostly white or gray, it may not look how you want it to look when displayed on a white background)."

10

Updated documentation for Logo rich result

Updated Logo documentation to support new flexibility in using the ImageObject type to specify an organization logo.

October 2021
29

Description recommended property removed from How-to rich result

Google have removed description from their list of recommended properties, stating that it is "unused by Google Search" and that the Rich Result Test doesn't flag warnings for it.

29

Several recommended properties removed from Q&A rich result

Q&A

Google have removed the properties below from their recommended list, stating that they are "unused by Google Search" and that the Rich Result Test doesn't flag warnings for them.

  • mainEntity.suggestedAnswer.author
  • mainEntity.dateCreated
  • mainEntity.suggestedAnswer.dateCreated
  • mainEntity.acceptedAnswer.author
  • mainEntity.acceptedAnswer.dateCreated
  • mainEntity.author

29

Several recommended properties removed from COVID-19 announcements rich result

Google have removed the properties below from their recommended list, stating that they are "unused by Google Search" and that the Rich Result Test doesn't flag warnings for them.

  • provider
  • audience
  • serviceType
  • address
  • category

27

Property changed from required to recommended for Job Posting rich result

Google removed validThrough from its list of required properties for the Job Posting rich result, and added it to the recommended properties list.

Resources

15

Modification to required property for Review snippet rich result

Google added a requirement that the author.name field in Review snippets must be less than 100 characters to be eligible for use in Search features.

13

Clarification to VideoGame type for Software App rich results

Google updated their documentation to add a clarification that they will not show a rich result for Software Apps that only have the VideoGame type. To ensure that your Software App is eligible for display as a rich result, you need to co-type the VideoGame type with another type.

For example: ["VideoGame", "MobileApplication"]

August 2021
09

Google's Structured Data Testing Tool now redirects to a landing page

A long time coming, Google's Structured Data Testing Tool (SDTT) is no longer publicly accessible, as the page now redirects to a landing page that encourages you to choose between the Rich Results Test and the Schema Markup Validator.

  • Rich Results Test - this is the official tool for testing your structured data to see if it is valid for Google rich results, but does not check structured data that Google does not support.
  • Schema Markup Validator - this is a 'refocused' version of the original SDTT, migrated onto the schema.org domain, which will validate against Schema.org, but does not validate Google rich results. This tool is officially still in beta, however Google claim it has now 'stabilized'.

Note that if you are looking to find a tool that will validate against Google rich results guidelines AND the Schema.org structured data model, Sitebulb has a standalone structured data checker which will do exactly that.

06

Added recommended property for Article rich result

Google added a new recommended property of author.url, which allows you to specify a link to a web page that uniquely identifies the author of the article, such as a social media profile or a bio page on the website. This author URL acts as a node identifier, and allows Google to disambiguate the correct author of the article.

July 2021
30

Significant update to guidelines for Math solvers rich result

Google have made numerous changes to the Math solvers documentation, including the addition of technical, content, and quality guidelines. The most significant change is the removal of the requirement for a solution page.

28

Removed support for multiple Fact Checks per page

Previously, Google stated on their Fact Check documentation that a single page could host multiple ClaimReview elements, each for a separate claim. This has completely changed, however, and the documentation now states that each page can only be eligible for a single Fact Check rich result, and that the page must only have one ClaimReview element.

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