Google issues warning to webmasters about ‘misuse’ of Event markup

Google on tablet

Google has announced that it will take measures to penalise websites that use Event markup in a 'misleading' way.

Google has today issued a warning to webmasters not to use Event structured data markup in a misleading way, as it could now lead to penalisation.

Specifically, Google singled out voucher and coupon websites who markup offers as 'events'.

Google said:

Using Event markup to describe something that is not an event creates a bad user experience, by triggering a rich result for something that will happen at a particular time, despite no actual event being present.

Below is an example of rich snippets created in Google's results because of misleading Event markup:

misleading event markup example in google

Google says that any webmaster who misuses Event markup in an effort to mislead searchers risks a penalty, which could result in Structured Data across the whole domain not being used in search results pages.

This new action is not just limited to Event markup, as Google suggest that any misuse of Structured Data markup could lead to a site being penalised:

While we’re specifically highlighting coupons and vouchers in this blogpost, this applies to all other non-event items being annotated with “event” markup as well -- or, really, for applying a type of markup to something other than the type of thing it is meant to describe.

About the Author

Luke Glassford

Luke Glassford is an SEO expert with over 15 years’ experience.

During his time working in SEO, Luke has set-up an SEO agency, worked as an in-house SEO for a major national company and managed his own successful SEO consultancy - using a lot of different SEO tools along the way!