Google November 2023 Reviews Update Completed After 29 Day Rollout

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The Google November 2023 reviews update, the last one Google will confirm, finished rolling out yesterday afternoon on December 7, 2023. It took 29 days to roll out, which initially kicked off on November 8, 2023.

Again, this was the last time Google confirmed a reviews update because it is now more of a regular update, compared to past reviews updates.

Here is the post announcing this update was complete:

Google November 2023 Reviews Update Quick Facts

Here are the most important things that we know right now in short form:

  • Name: Google November 2023 Reviews Update
  • Launched: November 8, 2023 at around 12 pm ET
  • Rollout: Completed December 7, 2022 at around 12pm ET (29 days)
  • Targets: It looks at all review content, including products, services, destinations, games, movies, or other topics
  • Penalty: It is not a penalty, it promotes or rewards “insightful analysis and original research.”
  • Not a core update: Many are going to say this is a core update, it is not.
  • Several languages: English, Spanish, German, French, Italian, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Russian, Dutch, Portuguese, Polish.
  • Impact: Google would not tell me what percentage of queries or searches were impacted by this update.
  • Discover: This update can impact your performance in Google Discover, Google previously said.
  • Recover: If you were hit by this, then you will need to look at your content and see if you can do better with Google’s advice below
  • Refreshes: Google said this update is now regular and they won’t confirm future refreshes or updates.

Overlapping Updates

As you know, this Reviews update overlapped with the November 2023 core update that started on November 2nd and completed on November 28th.

We think the reviews update had an impact around November 13th but as it went on, it was hard to say if the core update caused volatility or if the reviews update caused volatility. We did see big swings all week, I called it the winter blast update.

Documentation Updates

Google also tweaked some of its reviews system documentation page for this update. The changes include:

  • Adding: “The reviews system is improved at a regular and ongoing pace.”
  • Removed the words “and updates to it” from this line, “What does this system and updates to it mean for my site?”
  • Removed this line: “Periodically, we improve how the reviews system works. When we do this in a notable way, we share this as a “reviews update” on our Google Search Status Dashboard.”
  • Updating this line: “Content impacted by the reviews system may recover over time, if you’ve made improvements to your content. However, note that our automated assessment of review content is only one of many factors used in ranking content, so changes can happen at any time for various reasons.”

Google Tracking Tools On The November 2023 Reviews Update

Here is how volatile Google was over the past month based on the tracking tools. It is not specific to the reviews or core update, but just in general:

Semrush:

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SERPmetrics:

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Advanced Web Rankings:

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Cognitive SEO:

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Accuranker:

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Mozcast:

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Algoroo:

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SimilarWeb:

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SERPstat:

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Wincher:

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Mangools:

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Previous product Reviews Updates:

  • November 8, 2023 – November 2023 Reviews Update, and finished 29 days later on December 7, 2023
  • April 15, 2023 – April 2023 Reviews Update and finished 13 days later on April 25, 2023
  • February 21, 2023 – February 2023 Product Reviews Update and finished two weeks later on March 7 2023.
  • Septmeber 20, 2022 -
    September 2022 Google Product Reviews Update and completed September 26th.
  • July 27, 2022 – July 2022 Google Product Reviews Update and ended on August 2nd
  • March 23, 2022 – March 2022 Google Product Reviews Update and ended on April 11th.
  • December 1, 2021 – December 2021 Google Product Reviews Update and ended on December 21st
  • April 8, 2021 – April 2021 Product Reviews Update and ended on April 22nd.

Google’s Review Update Advice

Google has revised its advice on how to write review content that Google Search rewards. You can review that advice over here. “Publishing high quality reviews can help people learn more about things they are considering, such as products, services, destinations, games, movies or other topics,” Google wrote. Here is Google’s best practices on this topic now:

  • Evaluate from a user’s perspective.
  • Demonstrate that you are knowledgeable about what you are reviewing—show you are an expert.
  • Provide evidence such as visuals, audio, or other links of your own experience with what you are reviewing, to support your expertise and reinforce the authenticity of your review.
  • Share quantitative measurements about how something measures up in various categories of performance.
  • Explain what sets something apart from its competitors.
  • Cover comparable things to consider, or explain which might be best for certain uses or circumstances.
  • Discuss the benefits and drawbacks of something, based on your own original research.
  • Describe how a product has evolved from previous models or releases to provide improvements, address issues, or otherwise help users in making a purchase decision.
  • Focus on the most important decision-making factors, based on your experience or expertise (for example, a car review might determine that fuel economy and safety are key decision-making factors and rate performance in those areas).
  • Describe key choices in how a product has been designed and their effect on the users beyond what the manufacturer says.
  • Include links to other useful resources (your own or from other sites) to help a reader make a decision.
  • Consider including links to multiple sellers to give the reader the option to purchase from their merchant of choice.
  • When recommending something as the best overall or the best for a certain purpose, include why you consider it the best, with first-hand supporting evidence.
  • Ensure there is enough useful content in your ranked lists for them to stand on their own, even if you choose to write separate in-depth single reviews.

Forum discussion at X and WebmasterWorld.

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