• author: Google Search Central

Google Search News: Updates on Ecommerce, Search Ranking, Search Console and More

It is September, that means it is time for another "Google Search News" update. John Mueller, the host of the show, is back with some amazing updates on ecommerce in search, ranking updates, Search Console, and more.

Ecommerce in Search

Ecommerce in search has grown significantly over the years. So whether you sell products directly or work with merchants indirectly, there are some important updates for you. Here are some of them:

  • Structured Data: Annotations for pros and cons can help users to see a high-level summary of a review, directly shown on search. Find out more about it on the developer's documentation.
  • Expanded Eligibility: Recently, Google announced expanded eligibility for some product experiences from the use of structured data. The features include the shopping knowledge panel, popular products, and features in Google Images and Lens.
  • New Merchant Listings Report: Google has updated the documentation and added a new merchant listings report to Search Console.
  • Ecommerce-related Videos: There are a bunch of new ecommerce-related videos on the Google Search Central channel. Don't miss them!

Ranking Updates

Google launched the start of a series of improvements to Google Search, called the helpful content update. This update is a site-wide signal and the process is fully automated. For affected sites, improvements will be taken into account over time. Google has published a series of recommendations for creators. In short, focus on people-first content and avoid search engine-first content.

Here is a page dedicated to keeping track of big changes in ranking updates. For specific updates, check out the list with dates to narrow things down.

Search Console

Google Search Console helps explain how a website is doing in Google Search and gives site owners information on potential issues and areas for improvement. And now, there are new updates that Search Console has to offer:

  • Video Indexing Report: This report enables you to determine which videos were indexed and what might be preventing the others from being indexed.
  • Enhanced URL Inspection Tool: The URL Inspection tool now gives you information about videos.
  • HTTPS Report: Google has introduced a new HTTPs report to make it easier to recognize any issues blocking a page from being served securely. This report is gradually rolling out over time.
  • Simplified Page Classification: Over the last month, Google has simplified the way that they classify pages, items, and issues in Search Console. This makes it easier to focus on critical issues that affect site visibility in Search and to better prioritize work.
  • Geotargeting setting and Hreflange Report: Both of these features are going away. However, Hreflang annotations continue to be supported, and you can find all the recommendations for managing multilingual and multiregional sites in Google's documentation.

Some Neat Non-Google Things

If you're just getting started in the world of SEO, here are some amazing resources for you:

  • Interview Questions for SEOs: Jackie Chu shared a list of amazing interview questions for SEOs. These questions are the best to try out and to build.
  • An SEO Strategy: Tom Critchlow has a great write-up on how to work on SEO strategically. It doesn't matter if you're working on a big company's website or just starting on your blog, it's worthwhile checking out.

Shorter Updates

Here are some shorter updates for you:

  • Google is experimenting with a new format for their SEO Office Hours to try to answer your questions around Search.
  • In July, the search quality rater guidelines were updated. If you're curious about what Google considers, then check them out.
  • Google added information about how many bytes of HTML Googlebot will crawl in their developer's documentation. While this doesn't affect most sites, it's cool trivia to mention to developers. It’s 15 megabytes, by the way.
  • Google also added best practices for feeds for the follow feature in Google Discover. This feature is currently available in English in the US.

Thank you for tuning in to the latest episode of "Google Search News". Feedback and comments are always welcome. If you subscribe to this channel, Google will make sure to let you know when another episode is ready.

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