Google Pruning Rich Snippets In Search Results?

May 30, 2012 • 8:38 am | comments (22) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Google Rich Snippets SpamA new WebmasterWorld thread has one webmaster taking notice that Google seems to be displaying fewer and fewer rich snippets in the search results.

Rich Snippets is markup used by Google to show various data elements in text or a graphical nature in the search results on or near the search snippets.

Webmasters have been taking notice of this and at once point, Google has been showing so many rich snippets that the search results for many types of queries have become extremely colorful. This is not a bad thing, the only issue was that webmasters began abusing it by faking and spamming the rich snippets. Google retaliated by creating a rich snippets spam reporting tool.

But as you know, Google doesn't like to take manual action when they can build software to take automated action.

Maybe, I am not sure, Google released a rich snippets spam algorithm over the past week or so that targets showing only "trusted" sources for rich snippets?

Here is a screen shot of Amazon showing the rich snippets but Walmart not showing it.

Amazon vs Walmart Rich Snippet

The Walmart page does have the rich snippet markup on it. But technically the Amazon page does not seem to have it, at least I didn't see it in the HTML and the Google testing tool says it is not there.

So I am not sure what is going on. Is Amazon getting special treatment, is there a bug or is something else going on - like a trusted source thing?

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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