Google Search stops showing How-to rich results on desktop

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Google Search stops showing How-to rich results on desktop


Google Search stopped showing How-to rich results on desktop yesterday.

Google’s announcement. In an update to an Aug. 8 blog post about the reduction of visibility for HowTo and FAQ results, Google announced:

“Continuing our efforts to simplify Google’s search results, we’re extending the How-to change to desktop as well. As of September 13, Google Search no longer shows How-to rich results on desktop, which means this result type is now deprecated.”

“This change will be visible in the metrics for the How-to search appearance in the performance report, and in the number of impressions reported in the How-to enhancement reports. Since How-to results no longer appear in Google Search, we will be dropping the How-to search appearance, rich result report, and support in the Rich results test in 30 days. To allow time for adjusting your API calls, support for How-to in the Search Console API will be removed in 180 days.”

Changes to HowTo and FAQ rich results, John Mueller, Google Search Advocate

Why we care. If How-to rich results drove any incremental traffic for you, Google is now taking that all away from you, starting yesterday. And because the result type is now deprecated, that reporting will soon be gone in Google Search Console.

36 days later. Google said the How-To, from HowTo structured data, rich results would only be shown on desktop search results, and no longer on mobile devices, when the changes were announced Aug. 8.

Google added that “with mobile indexing, Google indexes the mobile version of a website as the basis for indexing: to have How-To rich results shown on desktop, the mobile version of your website must include the appropriate markup.”

But now How-To rich results are gone entirely – from desktop and mobile.

FAQ rich results now gone. FAQ rich results would “only be shown for well-known, authoritative government and health websites,” Google also announced last month. That reduction finally started yesterday as well.

As Barry Schwartz reported in Google FAQ Rich Results Now Only Displayed For Authoritative Sites on Search Engine Roundtable:

  • “FAQs in the Google search results are now barely showing up in the search results anymore. If you look at the tracking tools, they show a huge drop in how often the FAQ rich results are showing in the Google search results.”

Here’s a screenshot SEO consultant Brodie Clark shared on X:

The day has come. Google has now removed FAQ Schema rich results for the vast majority of sites on desktop. I checked a few GSC properties for large sites that use it heavily, and its gone. This is over a month since the change was meant to happen, but we knew it was coming.

— Brodie Clark (@brodieseo) September 13, 2023

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