April 19

Google Product Reviews Update: What You Need to Know

Online marketing


In the news today: Google product reviews update is the latest change to the algorithm of the number one search engine. You may be wondering why Google is making so many changes to the way it ranks websites. The answer is that the entire world is undergoing unprecedented changes and one of the things that changed is how consumers use Google.

How Important Is the Google Product Reviews Update?

The first things you need to know is that this update will affect only websites in English that display product reviews. If you do not have this kind of content or you operate international websites in their native language, you are not affected. At least for now.

Secondly, this is not a core algorithm update. Your keyword strategy and current page rank will not be impacted by this change. However, you should consider the Google product reviews update the sign for a new trend that will probably impact other types of content.

What Exactly Will the Google Product Reviews Update Change?

The main change comes in the way Google will display product reviews in search results. As you know, many users are looking for product reviews before they decide to make a purchase. This type of search has become predominant during the last year, due to lockdown rules.

Consumers were no longer able to go in stores and test products before buying them. Thus, they had to rely on product reviews. In this context, Google tries to bring relevant, high quality reviews at the top of search results.

Google started rolling out the product reviews update on the 8th of April and the full rollout will take around two weeks.

What You Can Expect

If your website affected by the Google product reviews update, you should note several spikes and drops in traffic. They are perfectly normal for the first few weeks. However, you should start looking at the product reviews you publish and ensure that they meet the quality standards required by Google.

In this sense, you should check that your reviews:

1. Express Expert Knowledge about the Product

Consumers want to read product reviews that they can trust. This means that the reviewer must be not only familiar with the product, but also know it inside out. If you are working with bloggers and influencers to review your products, make sure that they have access to it and demonstrate in-depth knowledge of how it works and what benefits it has for consumers.

2. Have Original Content that Provides Accurate Description

We have discussed the issue of duplicate content, more precisely boilerplate content, which represents standard product descriptions provided by the manufacturer. Here is another reason to avoid using it.

The Google product reviews update will favour original content which describes what the product looks like and what it does. This means that you have to rewrite generic product descriptions in your own words, focusing on being explanatory for any kind of consumer even the ones who have never used your product before.

3. Explain How Your Products Are Different from Others

Every company must have a unique selling proposition for its products. This goes beyond benefits and features. It must be something that you do better than any of your competitors. The product reviews should include this kind of information, which helps consumers decide on buying a product over another.

4. Offer Detailed Benefits and Drawbacks of the Product

Every product review attempts to be positive and promote the sale of the respective item. However, a fair and balanced review must also contain the potential drawbacks noticed in testing and research. This does not have to be a weak point per se; just fair explanation that some users may find the product complex and difficult to use, for instance.

5. Detail All Potential Use Cases

The product review must go beyond the manufacturer’s recommendations for use and present all potential use cases identified, including the effects on users that the manufacturer did not include in their description.

In our opinion, the Google product reviews update will weed out affiliate sites that are focused solely on making a commission from sales and not providing actual value and helpful information for consumers. Standard, sloppy and repetitive reviews will no longer show among the top Google search results and this is a good thing, because quality content will have a higher chance of being found by users.

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