Showcase applies Google's preferred markup for structured data (JSON-LD schema markup) to first-party reviews generated by Get Reviews campaigns when published on a List or Carousel widget — this means Google and other search engines can properly index and read both review data and ratings data.
Check out our blog post on Schema Markup here to discover more, and to understand why it's important for local businesses.
First-party vs. third-party reviews
Reviews which were given directly to your business (first-party), rather than via an external platform like Google, actually belong to you. Provided that the responder has given you permission to share them publicly, 1st-party reviews and ratings from Get Reviews can be republished on your widget with schema.
External reviews (third-party) are those which are pulled in to your Reputation Manager report from review sites like Google or booking.com) — these are owned by the original publisher.
While it’s okay to display these reviews on your site as social proof, they should not be marked up with schema.
As we reported in September 2019, Google announced a change to the way review schema can be used by local businesses, calling the perception of “reviews of a business on the business’ own site” as ‘self-serving’, and stating they intended to reduce “misleading implementations of schema markup”.
Essentially, third-party reviews have already been indexed for SERPs on the source site. If you republish these reviews in structured data format, search engines won’t use it so there is no benefit to schema markup.
What information do you pass in the source code?
When first-party reviews are included in the widget, we’ll pass various properties in the source code. ‘Type’ will be passed as “LocalBusiness”, while “AggregateRating” translates NPS scores from Get Reviews feedback into star rating.
To read more about schema, click on the following links:
Martha van Berkel on the power of schema for local businesses.
Google announces big changes to local business review schema.