Important: this has been confirmed as a bug from Google. Adding Schema to a homepage should not create a rich result (changes expected soon).
Update July 2nd: this bug has now been fixed.
Wow, that was quick. The bug where a homepage has the ability to yield a rich result in Google Search has now been fixed. Not seeing any of the examples I surfaced having the SERP treatment anymore. https://t.co/JNrUgPETPk— Brodie Clark (@brodieseo) July 2, 2020
As far back as I can remember, the homepage for a website has never been able to obtain a rich result (AKA “rich snippet”) in Google Search.
As of June 4th 2020, I’m now seeing a big change with this regard. The two Schema types that previously didn’t show rich results on the homepage now do.
For the most part, I suspect sites that now have a rich result appearing for their homepage will not have been on purpose. This may be because they implemented the markup within the <head>.
Taking this approach can result in a Spammy Structured Data Penalty and is not advised. But somehow, this is still a nuanced topic that Google hasn’t fully addressed across the web yet.
In terms of the Product markup example (with the star ratings), I would expect that a lot of sites using this are not going completely by the guidelines. The guidelines state:
There are two types of pages where you would typically use this markup:
• Product page that describes a single product
• Shopping aggregator page that lists a single product, along with information about different sellers offering that product
And I’m specifically mentioning Product Schema on purpose here, because that’s what a lot of sites (even those considered “local businesses”) are likely using to receive the rich snippets after the reviews update shook things up.
Whoa, seeing BIG changes in the past hour with the reviews update. Try a search for “[City Name] + SEO”. Very few sites still have a star rating on the first page of Google. Almost every major city in AU with that combo no longer has reviews showing. More work to be done by G. pic.twitter.com/QBUhBWyCFJ— Brodie Clark (@brodieseo) September 26, 2019
Sites that were using Organization Schema and sub-types likely lost their rich snippets because of this update. And this is again mentioned in Google’s guidelines for ‘review snippets‘:
Similar can be said for FAQPage, but this specific update doesn’t require more detail. The point is that some site owners will probably be surprised and happy that they’re now showing more prominently for their homepage in Search. Followed by others who now want to join in.
I wouldn’t expect to get an official announcement from Google on this one. And if we do, it would probably be something like: “Search is constantly changing and these things evolve over time”. ;p
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