Google Updates Shopping Snippet Results
2 minutes

Google Now Shows Return Policies In Some Shopping Snippets

When it comes to online shopping, there are still some sceptics. Whether it’s a generational thing or an individual hesitance, some internet users hate the stress of comparing product perks when buying from e-commerce sites and it can stop them from shopping online completely. 

Since the pandemic, however, internet users have grown, with an increase in people aged 65 and over shopping online, wanting more information to feel confident in their buying decisions.

As always, Google has responded to what the people using the internet need. 

Via a new Google update, some shopping snippets now show the return policy for a specific product, so customers can understand just how simple it is to return items that don’t fit the bill.


Image from Google Shopping - Returns Policy update


This could be huge for e-commerce clients, but why?


Why does Google show product return policies in its shopping snippets?

The great and mighty Google often never justifies its algorithm changes to us mere SEO folk who continue to try and please it. However, there is usually one common denominator in all of its changes: to make life better for its users. 

When customers are researching, comparing and understanding different products which meet their needs they often compare:

  • What a product looks like
  • The price points
  • Delivery time frame
  • Returns policy

By providing a SERPs page which offers as much information as possible to its users, Google is making the process of finding solutions much easier, thus improving UX

The more useful information a product offers on the search engine page means customers can spend less time researching and can make more informed decisions on the products they buy online.


How can your e-commerce site show its product return policy on Google SERPs?

As this feature is so new, there is uncertainty about how sites can display this information for Google to pull through. This could be via the page’s structured data, from the page content or even from Google Merchant Centre. 

Ensuring this content is accessible via product pages is a good first step until Google shares more secrets on how sites can ensure the information is pulled on the results page. 

Keeping your Google Merchant Centre up to date is also important, as it means if this is where Google pulls this information from you’ll already be one step ahead!


Why is it important to SEO?

Whilst we still don’t know too much about displaying the returns policy on the search engine results page, we know it could be a biggie for SEO metrics.

Offering more information to customers in this way could help increase site clicks compared to competitors who do not share this information, on the other hand, if your return policy isn’t as great as others, it could reduce clicks, too. 

It should also mean that the traffic that does come to your site is more likely to convert and less likely to bounce because the extra information they’ve been provided with before they get to the site has helped seal the deal in choosing your site’s product to purchase.

It’s definitely an aspect of SEO we’ll be keeping an eye on for our e-commerce clients at NORTH. It will be interesting to see what effect these changes will have on click metrics – watch this space!