Google changed rules for schema … again
If you have site where you use user review schema (aggregate reviews), you should check your rich snippets in google. In most cases you don’t have stars in snippet. This is because google changed rules for schema…again. So, what type of schema is better for product review sites and affiliate blogs. Some my investigation.
Usually, most of star ratings plugins used Article schema as main container and aggregate reviews for adding star snippet. Problem is that near 2 months ago, google changed rules and add some required fields, like image, date, etc
Currently, they updated rules and made them even harder. Now, you need to specify image object (and specify width and height of image), also, you must specify author and his logo (again as image object with height and width). Sometimes it’s can be a problem for sites on wordpress. Because now, google requires images at least 696 pixels wide. But very often, you don’t have such image, especially on product review websites, where product images can be very small (if you parse them from affiliate systems API)
So, I think that currently, Article schema is not good when you want to get star review snippet in google. You don’t know, maybe they will change rules again or maybe they will disable star snippet for articles, because this schema is created for news, not for reviews.
Ok, what we can use now.
First of all, I tried to used code from google docs for review schema types.
I checked this code on google test tool. And what did I get? WTF?????
Code which google recommends to use gives error on google testing tool.
Then, I decide to make some investigation and check sites which have star snippets. Most of them have aggregate review schema inside movie/music/product schema.
So, I decided to use Product schema. Why? This is some reasons for this:
- It’s simple and don’t have many required properties
As you see, only name is required. Other things are optional
- Product can have offers inside
- Products can have editor’s review or aggregate rating inside
For example, if you used article schema early and review schema, google didn’t show stars.
- Products don’t require to have author, person, organization properties, so, less load on server and less code
So, if you want to have star rating schema, such code must be enough
<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Product">
<span itemprop="name">Executive Anvil</span>
<span itemprop="aggregateRating" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/AggregateRating">
<span itemprop="ratingValue">4.4</span> stars, based on <span itemprop="reviewCount">89</span> reviews</span>
Note, this can be changed in future