Google Subtly Corrects Site Names in Search Results

  • June 10, 2024
  • SEO
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Google has successfully addressed an issue related to site names that had persisted since September 2023. This problem hindered the proper display of a website’s site name when inner pages were ranked in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Understanding Site Names in the Search Results

The term “site name” refers to the name of a website that appears in the SERPs. This functionality helps users easily recognize the site within search results. For example, if a company is widely known as “Acme Anvil Company,” Google aims to display this name in the search results. If, however, the company prefers to be shown as “AAC” and is recognized by this name, Google will strive to reflect this preference in the SERPs.

Google offers site owners the ability to use the “WebSite” structured data on their homepage to indicate the correct site name that should appear in search results.

Challenges with Propagating Site Names

On September 7, 2023, Google acknowledged an issue within their site name documentation. They noted difficulties in propagating the site name to inner pages of a website when these inner pages were displayed in the SERPs.

Below is the official warning that was issued:

“Known issue: site name isn’t appearing for internal pages
In some cases, a site name shown for a home page may not have propagated to appear for other pages on that site. For example, example.com might be showing a site name that’s different from example.com/internal-page.html.

We’re actively working to address this issue. We will update this help page once it is resolved. In the meantime, if your homepage is displaying the preferred site name, please understand that it should eventually appear for your internal pages as well.”

Resolution of the Site Name Issue by Google

Recently, the documentation that listed the site name issue has been removed. The changes were noted in the Google documentation changelog, stating:

“Resolving the issue with site names and internal pages
What: Removed the warning about the issue that was preventing new site names from propagating to internal pages.

Why: The issue has been resolved. It is important to note that it takes time for Google to recrawl and process the new information, including recrawling your internal pages.”

Google has not disclosed the specific cause of the propagation problem, leaving some questioning whether its prolonged resolution was due to a low priority status or if significant backend changes in Google’s systems were required.

For further information, consult the updated Google documentation on site names:

Provide a site name to Google Search

Featured Image by Shutterstock/Cast Of Thousands

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