As Google promised, it has updated its support for site names in its search results. Google said it has expanded support for subdomains and also has compiled more information on how site names work in Google Search. Plus, Google had documented a few workarounds for when it does not work.
Google said, “We now support subdomains on all devices in these languages. In addition, we recently updated how the site names system works, to increase its ability to make selections that are representative of sites listed in search results.”
Google said it has updated that documentation to “encourage more use of the alternateName property.” Why? Google said that sometimes a preferred site name is not available. Google listed this example, “our system generally won’t use the same site name for two different sites that are global in nature. Providing an alternative name using the alternateName property allows our system to consider other options, if your preferred choice isn’t selected.”
Google posted a workaround in its help documents for when it does not work. Google wrote:
(1) First, try providing an alternative name using the alternateName property.
(2) Provide your domain or subdomain name as a backup option.
(3) If that’s still not working, then try providing your domain or subdomain name (in all lowercase) as your preferred name, as a last-resort workaround option.
Google also said they are “aware that 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, https://example.com/ might be showing a site name that’s different from https://example.com/internal-page.html.”
Note, we did notice some changes to site names in the past couple of days. I reached out to Google and did not hear back, so I guess this is what we saw.
Google introduced the site name feature last October for mobile and last March for desktop search.
Google has been having some issues with site names since it launched, asking SEOs for feedback and then pushing out a fix for some site names back in April but the issues linger on for many.
Here is my post from a couple of days ago:
I’m definitely seeing some improvements! 🙂 https://t.co/P6UF4WbUL6
— Glenn Gabe (@glenngabe) July 26, 2023
I am seeing a lot of improvements from some of the examples posted in the Google Webmaster Help forums:
But not all are resolved, so maybe these workarounds can help them?
Forum discussion at Twitter and Google Webmaster Help.