Google Displays Different Dates in Search Results Depending on Relevancy

Google’s John Mueller says search outcomes will both show an article’s publication date, or final modification date, relying on which is most related.

This subject got here up in a current Google Webmaster Central hangout the place a consumer submitted the next query:

“Why do search results sometimes show a publication date and time instead of the last modification date and time? Wouldn’t it be useful for the user doing it the other way around?”

Mueller admits this is a matter these inside the firm generally argue about internally, and he sees good arguments on each side.

Google’s search engine algorithms don’t default to selecting one date over one other. It relies upon on which date is most related to a selected piece of content material.

Sometimes it is sensible to point out the unique publication date, and generally it’s higher to point out the final modification date.

For instance, a modification might have modified a chunk of content material so considerably that it impacts what the consumer is on the lookout for.

In a case like that, Google’s algorithms might select to show the final modification date reasonably than the unique publication date.

Hear Mueller’s full response in the video beneath, beginning on the 11:15 mark.

“That’s something that we sometimes argue with with the dates team, but I see there are good arguments both ways.

In our algorithms we don’t always pick one or the other as the one that we will show. Sometimes we feel that the original date makes sense to show, and sometimes it makes sense to show the last modification date where we know that something significant changed on this page that affects what the user is looking for.

So I think there are arguments that could be made for both directions, and that’s kind of why we try to be a bit flexible there with the algorithms.”

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