Google to Offer Inline Ratings to Fewer Search Results

In an effort to improve the user experience, Google began adding inline star ratings to certain search results. This made it so that you would be able to figure out the quality of a particular product while doing online shopping without having to navigate away from the search results and onto a different site. Since the best way to try and maximize your income from online resources is to make users stay on your own webpage for as long as possible, it makes sense that Google would start offering this feature.

However, it seems like Google is going to be offering inline ratings and the like to fewer search results from now on. This is because of the fact that inline ratings were being abused by certain webpages, and so Google is restricting access to inline ratings to a few limited schema that the search giant feels would benefit from having ratings in these areas. Things like course work, books and other such products along with films and video games are obviously still going to have inline ratings, and this doesn’t really impact eCommerce sites that much which means that there is still a lot that they can gain.

This is being done in order to streamline the user experience and tweak the algorithm to make it more intuitive for people to get an answer whenever they ask a question regarding the quality of a particular kind of content or product that can be searched for using the Google search engine.
"Search results that are enhanced by review rich results can be extremely helpful when searching for products or services (the scores and/or “stars” you sometimes see alongside search results). To make them more helpful and meaningful, we are now introducing algorithmic updates to reviews in rich results. This also addresses some of the invalid or misleading implementations webmasters have flagged to us.", announced Yuxin Cao, Software Engineer & Sven Naumann, Trust & Safety Search in a post on Webmaster Central Blog.
Google is trying to make it so that sites can’t use the inline star ratings to try and advertise their own products which is going to help prevent users from being duped into thinking that a rating supposed to work as marketing is a true reflection of the quality of a certain product.

You can read more FAQ about this feature here.

Photo: AFP/Getty Images

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