I recently predicted Google would remove some review rich snippets in late 2016 or early 2017. Well, here we are. It is December 8th, 2016, and yesterday I noticed that lots of websites are missing their review snippets, aka the “little stars in search results”.
It is worth noting that attorneys and law firms seem to be the majority of the people adding these rich snippets to search engine result pages (SERPs).
A before and after shot of review snippets missing
Not all are missing
As mentioned above, it is mostly lawyers taking advantage of review snippets in search results. The best practices are iffy. Of course, it makes no sense to add an aggregated rating to search results from a third party site, and this is technically against Google’s policy. More on how review snippets work for attorneys here.
If I do a site:search query on the target site, we can see that only some pages are missing the stars:
Thanks Gerson & Schwartz! 🙂
JSON+LD is unscathed
At this point, only law firm sites using Justia’s content management system use Microdata. Everyone else moved on to the newer, superior JSON+LD script years ago. I personally put these on attorney sites in moderation. Some CMSs do not allow you to insert JSON LD scripts, so those people are stuck with Microdata.
Some sites are missing their review snippets in search results. Sites missing review snippets used microdata markup instead of JSON+LD scripts. At the moment it is unclear if this is temporary or a sign of things to come.