Notes from the Google Webmaster Hangout on the 11th of December 2018.

Don't Include Structured Data Where There is No Relevant Information

There is no need to include specific structured data for pages where there is no relevant information. For example, if a product page doesn’t have any reviews then don’t use review markup for that particular page.

Encourage Google to Crawl Pages Faster Using URL Inspection Tool

It is normal for Google to take a couple of months to reprocess changes to a page that isn’t a homepage, as these pages might not be crawled frequently. You can encourage Google to crawl a page a bit faster by testing the live URL and then requesting indexing in the URL Inspection tool.

Rel=”next” and rel=”prev” are useful for Google in understanding paginated sets, but there needs to be HTML links on the page to the next and previous pages.

Nested Sitemap Index Files Aren't Supported by Google

Google doesn’t support nested sitemap index files, where one sitemap references another one. Instead set up separate sitemap index files and submit them separately.

Consider Moving Outdated Content to Archive Pages For Recurring Content

For recurring content, consider having one main page for the most recent version and then moving this content to an archive page when it is no longer current. For example, a landing page about the most recent iPhone could exist with archive pages about previous iPhone versions.

John recommends having one type of structured data on a page, as it will take more effort to maintain two types of markup and may result in inconsistencies between the two.

Index User-Generated Content if it Provides Value

It is fine to index user-generated content, such as comments, but it is up to webmasters if they think that it is valuable content that should be visible to search engines. In the case of comments, it might make sense to block them from being crawled and indexed.

Google News Sitemap is Fastest Way to Get Pages Crawled for Publishers

Submitting a Google News sitemap is the fastest way to get Google to crawl pages for publishing sites.

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