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Since the Core Web Vitals update that Google had rolled out in 2021, better user experience has become one of the most critical parameters for ranking sites. In the later updates that came in, Google’s focus has seen a gradual shift on ranking sites that provide informative and authentic content, focusing on stringently evaluating product reviews -a vital part of the E-Commerce business. The Google Product Review update was first released in April, and then came the second release in December 2021, confirming its implementation in the ranking algorithm.
The Background for the Google Product Review Updates
Google’s product review updates were based on the feedback collected from users on what they look forward to in a product review.
The significant findings were the utility and trustworthiness of the review. Users also wanted the product to be tested in reality and quoted accordingly-rather than just mentioning its features and specifications.
Users also needed additional purchase options rather than a single link to the product website.
The inclusion of additional purchase options will impact low-quality affiliate sites. Most of them had just copied content directly from the main website or had a poor quality of review content-with a single affiliate link for purchasing the product or service.
Google’s guidelines for High-Quality Product Reviews
Google had set a series of guidelines that would make a high-quality review, substantial enough to positively impact search rankings. This would serve as a guideline for SEO practices and enable E-Commerce stores to improve the quality of their reviews to better suit the requirements of both search engines and prospective customers.
The idea was to provide informative content to the user to compare products and purchase from a seller of their choice- rather than being redirected to a single site.
As an E-Commerce store owner, you should certainly not miss the below guidelines that Google has rolled out for writing product reviews, as they might drastically affect your search engine rankings.
Write to relate to the user
Reviews must be written from a user’s point of view rather than just putting content and keywords for search engines.
Show proven expertise
The review should include the author’s expertise in the specific field-such as credentials, visuals, videos, audio, and published links that would help. This would do away with writing reviews just for building content.
The idea is to ensure that the author of the review has proven experience in that field and provides an actual review of the product or service.
The review should include metrics on how the product or service stands against various parameters-which could be ease of usage, after-sales support, warranty, efficiency, safety, and other viable factors in general. It should also specifically cover the key decision-making factors for that product category, with associated metrics.
Compare and Contrast
There should be a comparison of related products to know the USP of each of the products and can make accurate purchasing decisions. The review must cover both the benefits and drawbacks of each product.
Include the product journey
The review must contain different product release versions, with a summary of how the product has been modified in each version or has new features and enhancements from the past to the current version.
Give a holistic view
The review must include the key factors that would be considered while manufacturing the product from an end user’s perspective. This would be in addition to what the manufacturer says about the product. The idea is to enable the users to have a 360° information about the product and its utility and can also include external reference links.
Don’t limit a purchase
The review must include additional purchase options and should not be limited to what an affiliate site will have.
The above factors are intended to ensure that prospective customers have the correct information on how the product works from a credible and trusted source. All the above count for Google to determine the efficacy of the review and consider the product review page to rank as per its standards. For better search positioning and to create an enriching customer experience, it’s now time to revamp your existing product reviews and stay ahead in the race.