The April 2023 reviews update is the expanded update of the product reviews updates. This new algorithm update goes beyond evaluating reviews of products to evaluating content related to reviews of products, services, games, movies, destinations, and more. The algorithm update may impact any site that publishes content related to these types of reviews.
The rollout was released last April 12 and was announced on Google Search Central’s Twitter. The rollout was completed in 13 days.
Released the April 2023 reviews update, which now covers reviews about products, services, and things. Learn more about how to write high quality reviews:https://t.co/tdM0JhyyTG
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) April 12, 2023
What Is a Reviews Update?
Previously called product reviews updates, reviews updates evaluate content that reviews products, services, destinations, and many other subjects. The update does not penalize content that is not aligned with Google’s guidelines, but it promotes reviews that are insightful, original, and helpful to readers.
The April 2023 algorithm update is expected to improve the quality and relevance of reviews, making them more useful and trustworthy for consumers.
Language Coverage of Reviews Update
The new reviews update expanded coverage to more languages, including:
How the Reviews System Works
According to Google, the reviews system works to help readers get only in-depth reviews of specific products or services they are interested in.
In their official guidance for reviews system, Google says: “The reviews system is designed to evaluate articles, blog posts, pages, or similar first-party standalone content written with the purpose of providing a recommendation, giving an opinion, or providing analysis. It does not evaluate third-party reviews, such as those posted by users in the reviews section of a product or services page.”
Google has emphasized that it will continue monitoring and adjusting its algorithms as necessary to ensure its review system remains fair and accurate. As such, businesses and users alike can expect further updates and improvements to the review system in the future.
How to Recover When Hit by the Reviews Update
When your site is impacted by the reviews update, rankings are the metric most prone to change. If you see volatility in rankings or traffic during and after the rollout, you should review your content and ensure that it follows Google’s best practices in writing quality reviews.
Google has revised its guidelines for writing reviews in accordance with this new algorithm update. Below are some of the best practices to follow for writing insightful reviews:
- Assess the subject from a user’s point of view.
- Demonstrate that you know what you are reviewing—prove you are an expert.
- Provide proof, such as visuals, audio, or other links of your own experience with what you are reviewing, to support your expertise and reinforce the genuineness of your review.
- Include quantitative measurements about how the subject measures up in various categories of performance.
- Share what sets the subject apart from the competitors.
- Include comparisons to or explain which might be best for specific uses or circumstances.
- Explain the pros and cons of based on your original research.
- Explain how the product’s evolution from previous releases to provide improvements, address issues, or otherwise help users in making a purchase decision.
- Focus on the most crucial decision-making factors, based on your experience or expertise.
- Link out to other useful resources to help a reader decide.
- Insert links to multiple sellers to allow the reader to purchase from their merchant of choice.