A Guide to Star Ratings on Google and How They Work

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A new article on Search Engine Journal offers to teach you everything you need to know about star ratings from how they appear in organic search results to the impact on local rankings and more.

Five-star reviews used to be something you could only flaunt in a rotating reviews section on your website. Now, Google has pulled these stars out of the shadows and features them front and center across branded SERPs and beyond. 48% of consumers won’t even look twice at a business with less than 4-stars. Star ratings can help you earn trust from potential customers, improve local search rankings, and boost conversions.

When a person searches Google, they see star ratings on standard blue link listings, ads, rich results like recipe cards, local pack results, third-party review sites, and on app store results. Google’s John Mueller recently confirmed that the search engine doesn’t factor star ratings or customer reviews into web search rankings. However, Google is clear that star ratings influence local search results and rankings:

“Google review count and review score factor into local search ranking. More reviews and positive ratings can improve your business’s local ranking.”

So, even though they’re not a ranking factor for organic search, star ratings can serve as an important conversion element, helping you display social proof and build credibility. Websites can stand out from their competitors by getting stars to show up around their organic search results listing pages. If you want stars to show up on your organic search results, add schema markup to your website – and if you want to learn some simple ways to achieve that, this article has all the information you’re going to need to get started. There’s a video guide and some easy-to-follow templates and tips.

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