Why Review Stars Disappearing in Google Search Results?


The use of ratings in search results is one of the most acknowledged tricks to bring more attention to the website in Google search results. Using the rating "stars", some specialists managed to increase the visibility of the website and outperform competitors in competitive niches.

Rating stars - an important element that can be displayed in the search results to show the user the rating of a particular page. For any professional, SEO stars play a fundamental role in optimizing and improving CTR, as they affect the click-through rate. After all, the higher the page or website rating, the higher the likelihood that the user clicks on it.

Statistics show that websites in the second and third positions of search results sometimes have a higher CTR than the page in the first position. This happens if the user sees the rating stars. This is a kind of trigger that other users already have experience interacting with this website, which means it's not a scam.

Implementation of snippets has become a key requirement in the development of any website, especially in the field of eCommerce. Almost every online store had rating stars on both regular pages and product pages. As often happens, due to the massive introduction of the rating, its value for Google has decreased. In this regard, Google decided to change an algorithm for displaying ratings in search results.


What changes has Google made?

The changes were announced in the official blog. The reason for introducing new algorithms was an abuse of this snippet and an attempt to deceive users. As a result, the classic rating stars began to disappear from websites. In simple words, Google now shows overview results only for: 

  •  Certain types of pages/objects
  •  Valid reviews that one can check
  •  Reviews that have a “name” property in the markup

In their blog post, Google representatives explained which pages/objects can receive stars and they will be shown:

Despite the presence of objects such as “Local business” and “Organization” in this list, we can confidently say that most websites will lose and not be able to use this rich-snippet, since Google has limited its use on official company representative websites. This was done in order to reduce the possibility of cheating reviews on official business pages.

Previously, any company could post on its website a rating about its own company, and it was displayed. According to Google, such information is misleading. Therefore, now such reviews will be counted as self-serving. Similarly, if you use third-party widgets or plugins for rating, they will not be counted by the Google algorithm as well. The company has banned the extraction of all ratings from places that cannot be verified.

Now, you should be more careful and competent in setting up rich-snippets on your website. After all, if the settings do not match the Google algorithms, the rating will not be shown.


Why do some competitors have stars?

Some websites intentionally modify recommended snippets, marking them as Product. Google thinks that everything is fine and shows stars in search results. Websites that use comment widgets especially stand out. Widgets can extract comments with micro-marking of stars but at the same time show what is on the Product page and not Article or Information about Company.

Such tricks will not lead to anything good. According to Google's rules, this is a serious violation. Most likely, such websites will receive sanctions, which are almost impossible to remove. Therefore, do not try to deceive the search results. If you are using the Wiremo widget, contact our specialists, and they will tell you how to use rating stars correctly and how to avoid Google sanctions.

There are many other ways to attract an audience’s interest and increase search engine ratings. Your CTR will depend on what your customers say about you and how often they leave comments. Our tools will help you with this.

With Wiremo, you won’t lose the loyalty of your audience and search engines, even if some stars will disappear from the search results.


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