Google Product Reviews March 2022 Update Complete

Google has confirmed that the March 2022 Product Reviews Update has now completed its rollout. This update has officially completed its rollout over a period of 19 days, starting on March 23, 2022.

The announcement. “The Google Product Review Update is fully rolled out. Thank you! Alan Kent of Google wrote on Twitter.

March 2022 product advisories update. As a reminder, the March 2022 Product Advisory Update began rolling out around 12:00 a.m. ET on March 23, 2022. This update took 19 days to roll out after it was announced. This update therefore started on March 23, 2022 and lasted until April 11, 2022.

Big update. This update was not as big as the December 2021 Update, based on data provider data.

Why we care. If your website has product review content, you’ll want to check your rankings to see if you’ve been hit. Has your organic Google traffic improved, decreased, or stayed the same?

In the long run, you’ll want to make sure that in the future, you put a lot more detail and effort into your product review content so that it’s unique and stands out from the competition on the web.

Learn more about the March 2022 Product Advisory Update

The SEO Community. The March 2022 Product Advisory Update seemed to have a slow start, with some volatility as early as March 23, but most of the volatility appeared on March 31. I was able to cover the community reaction in a blog post on the Search Engine Roundtable. It includes some of the earliest chatter, leaderboards, and social shares from some SEOs. In short, if your site was impacted by this update, you probably felt it in a very big way, but it wasn’t as widespread as the December update in terms of community chatter .

What to do if you are affected. Google has provided guidance on what to consider if you are negatively affected by this Product Ratings update. We published these tips in our original story here. Also, Google has provided two new best practices around this update, one saying to provide more multimedia around your product reviews and the second is to provide links to multiple sellers, not just one. Google published these two items:

  • Provide evidence such as visuals, audio, or other links of your own experience with the product, to support your expertise and bolster the authenticity of your review.
  • Include links to multiple sellers to give the reader the option to buy from the merchant of their choice.

Google added the following criteria for what matters with the March 2022 Product Ratings Update:

  • Include useful in-depth details, such as the pros or cons of a certain item, details about a product’s performance, or how the product differs from previous versions
  • Come from people who have actually used the products and show what the product physically looks like or how it is used
  • Include unique information beyond what the manufacturer provides, such as 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

Google has added three new tip points for this third version of the product reviews update:

  • Are product review updates relevant to ranked listings and comparative reviews? Yes. Updates to product reviews apply to all forms of review content. The best practices we shared also apply. However, due to the shorter nature of ranked listings, you may want to demonstrate your expertise and build authenticity in a more concise way. Citing relevant results and including original images of tests you’ve done with the product can be a good way to do this.
  • Are there any recommendations for reviewers recommending the “best” products? If you recommend a product as the best overall or the best for a certain purpose, be sure to share with the reader why you consider that product the best. What sets the product apart from others on the market? Why is the product particularly suitable for the recommended use? Be sure to include supporting first-hand evidence.
  • If I create a review that covers multiple products, do I still need to create reviews for the products individually? It can be effective to write a high-quality, ranked list of related products in combination with in-depth single product reviews for each recommended product. If you write both, make sure there is enough useful content in the ranked list to stand on its own.

Updated Google product reviews. The Google Product Reviews Update aims to promote review content that goes beyond much of the modeled information you see on the web. Google said it would promote these types of product reviews in its search results rankings.

Google doesn’t directly punish substandard product reviews that have “thin content that just sums up a bunch of products.” However, if you provide such content and your ranking is demoted because other content is promoted above yours, it will certainly feel like a penalty. Technically, according to Google, this isn’t a penalty against your content, Google just rewards sites with more insightful review content with higher rankings than yours.

Technically, this update should only impact product review content and not other types of content.

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About the Author

Barry Schwartz is editor of Search Engine Land and a member of the SMX events programming team. He owns RustyBrick, a New York-based web consulting company. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry’s personal blog is called Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here.

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