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Spammy Structured Markup Penalty: A Step-By-Step Guide on Recovering from Penalty

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Spammy Structured Markup Penalty: A Step-By-Step Guide on Recovering from Penalty

Blog / Spammy Structured Markup Penalty: A Step-By-Step Guide on Recovering from Penalty

Spammy Structured Markup Penalty: A Step-By-Step Guide on Recovering from Penalty

Incorporating an Aggregate Review schema can be advantageous for businesses to display their product’s ratings and reviews. This schema markup can make your website eligible for organic stars to appear beside your search listings, potentially increasing your Click Through Rate (CTR), as stated by Search Engine Land.

However, implementing schema can be challenging. With numerous fields to select from and guidelines updated frequently, improper use can result in a manual penalty for spammy structured markup data.

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When utilised correctly, structured markup data is a useful tool that can aid websites in presenting accurate information on search results and improving organic search visibility. However, if misused, marking irrelevant content with structured data can potentially harm your website.

As we all know, Google does not approve of sites that do not comply with quality guidelines and provide a poor user experience. If you have been affected by a spammy structured markup penalty, you understand the consequences. If not, it is crucial to adhere to guidelines to avoid such penalties.

What Do You Mean by Spammy Structured Markup Penalty?

A Spammy Structured Markup Penalty is a type of penalty that can be given by Google’s Web spam Team after investigating a website and finding that it violates their guidelines. This penalty is given manually and can be found in the Google Search Console under ‘Search Traffic’ and ‘Manual Actions’.

The notice usually explains that the website’s structured data does not comply with the guidelines and provides instructions for submitting a reconsideration request after making the necessary changes. The message also specifies the URL that the penalty has been applied to, whether it’s the entire website or a specific page, such as a blog.

How to Locate Spammy Structured Markup?

To identify any spammy schema on your website, you can use the Structured Data Testing Tool, which is a quick and efficient method.

What To Do?

  • All you need to do is enter the URL of the page you want to inspect, and the tool will display the schema markup, if any, on that page.
  • Additionally, you can click on a field to locate the corresponding code on the website. This simplifies the process of identifying the markup when you’re making alterations.
  • Moreover, the tool highlights any errors or warnings that may arise. Thus, you can easily detect and address any evident issues without having to spend a considerable amount of time locating them.

What are Some of the Most Common Aggregate Review Schema Mistakes?

Making mistakes with structured data can lead to penalties. Some common mistakes to avoid with Aggregate Review Schema include:

  • Using your overall service score across all pages, which can be misleading for users.
  • Using product schema but not using the corresponding product reviews.
  • Entering incompatible information in a field, which can sometimes be due to a typo.
  • Not entering Best Rating, Worst Rating, and Rating Value correctly. Best Rating should always be 100, Worst Rating should be 0, and Rating Value should be the score out of 100.
  • Using third-party reviews within the Local Business schema, which is against Google’s guidelines.
  • Using Organisation schema with reviews on pages

To avoid these mistakes, you can check your site using the Structured Data Testing Tool and refer to the requirements on the website if you are unsure about what information should be included.

Learn How to Recover from Penalty

To recover from a Spammy Structured Markup penalty, you should follow these steps:

  • Identify the problem by using the Structured Data Testing Tool. Once you have located the issue, you can start to make changes to your code to resolve the problem. If you cannot find the problem, it’s better to remove all schema from your website and start over.
  • Determine what you want your schema to achieve by using the website. Write down the required fields and their respective values. Make the necessary changes in your code and create a Notepad file. If you use JSON, you can use the playground tool to write your code.
  • Use the ‘Code Snippet’ tab of the testing tool to test your code for compliance with the guidelines before applying it to your website.
  • Replace your current schema markup with the new one. Check again in the testing tool to ensure that everything has been done correctly.
  • Submit a reconsideration request, acknowledging the penalty and detailing the steps you took to correct it, as well as any plans to ensure compliance with the guidelines. You can do this through your Search Console account.

Finally, wait for a few weeks for a response from a member of Google. If your changes have addressed the issue, the penalty will be lifted.

Learn More: How to Get Featured Snippets: Optimization Tips

Few Google Schema Guidelines to Keep in Mind

Google schema guidelines provide a set of rules and recommendations for webmasters to follow when using structured data on their websites. These guidelines are designed to ensure that the data provided to users is accurate, relevant and easy to understand.

Some of the key guidelines to keep in mind when implementing structured data include:

  • Follow The structured data on your website should follow the guidelines set out by This ensures that the data you provide can be easily understood by search engines and other applications.
  • Use the correct schema: Make sure you are using the correct schema markup for your content. For example, if you are reviewing a product, you should use the Product schema, not the Local Business schema.
  • Avoid misleading users: Don’t use structured data to mislead users. This includes using false review scores or ratings or including irrelevant information in your schema markup.
  • Ensure accuracy: Ensure that the structured data you provide is accurate and up to date. This includes ensuring that review scores and ratings are current, and that all relevant information is included.
  • Don’t use hidden text: Don’t use hidden text or other methods to hide structured data from users. This violates Google’s guidelines and may result in a penalty.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your structured data is accurate, relevant and easy to understand. This will help improve the user experience on your website and increase your visibility in search results.


To sum up, getting penalized for Spammy Structured Markup can have severe repercussions on your website’s traffic and online visibility. To prevent this, it is essential to comply with Google’s guidelines and avoid common schema markup mistakes such as using the overall service score across all pages, using incorrect review data and entering unsuitable information in schema fields.

What To Do?

If you do receive a manual penalty, you can utilize the Structured Data Testing Tool to identify and rectify the issue, follow the recovery steps such as identifying the problem, determining your schema requirements using, replacing the current code with new schema markup and submitting a reconsideration request.

Following these measures can help you avoid a Spammy Structured Markup Penalty and maintain your website’s online reputation.


What is a spammy structured markup penalty?

The Spammy Structured Markup Penalty is a penalty imposed by Google on websites that breach its guidelines on schema markup or structured data. Schema markup is a code that website owners can utilize to furnish search engines with more details about the content on their pages.

However, if used incorrectly, it can appear spammy and deceitful to Google, which can lead to a penalty. The penalty can cause a reduction in search engine visibility and website traffic.

What is the role of structured data testing tools?

The role of structured data testing tools is to help webmasters identify issues with their schema markup and ensure that it adheres to Google’s guidelines. These tools allow webmasters to test their schema markup and see how it will appear in search engine results pages (SERPs).

By using structured data testing tools, webmasters can identify errors or issues with their schema markup and fix them before they are penalized by Google. These tools also help webmasters stay up to date with changes in Google’s guidelines and ensure that their schema markup is optimized for search engines.

How does a spammy structured markup penalty affect SEO?

The Spammy Structured Markup Penalty can have a significant impact on the SEO of a website. It can lead to a decrease in visibility in the search engine results pages (SERPs), which in turn can result in a loss of traffic and potential customers or revenue for the site.

In addition to the loss of traffic and revenue, the penalty can also harm a website’s reputation by signaling that it engages in manipulative or spammy tactics. This can damage the trust that users and search engines have in the site, making it harder for the site to rank well in the future.

Furthermore, recovering from the penalty can be a time-consuming and difficult process that may require technical expertise and resources. This can further impact a website’s SEO and overall success, as the penalty may need to be addressed before the site can regain its previous rankings and traffic.

What are some of the important Google schema guidelines?

Webmasters must adhere to several crucial Google schema guidelines while implementing structured data markup on their websites.

  • Firstly, they should follow the guidelines laid out by, which is a collaborative community that develops schemas for structured data markup.
  • Secondly, they must use structured data markup to accurately describe the content on the page and avoid any misleading or deceptive practices. It is important to avoid using irrelevant or misleading schema markup to manipulate search engine rankings. Webmasters should use schema markup that is specific to the content on the page, and not use the same schema markup across multiple pages.
  • Moreover, the structured data markup should be correctly implemented on the website and easily accessible to search engine crawlers. Webmasters should not use schema markup for content that is hidden or challenging to find on the page. They should not use schema markup to manipulate review scores or ratings or to display fake or incorrect reviews. The structured data markup must be kept up-to-date, accurate and must reflect the current content on the page.

Adhering to these guidelines can ensure that the structured data markup is compliant with Google’s policies, effective, and accurate, which, in turn, can help enhance a website’s visibility and search engine rankings.

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