Star Ratings of a Different Color: Google Testing New Formats

When searching for a company review or local business, users have come to expect to see an orange star rating in their results.

However, Google has reportedly been mixing it up by testing additional colors, including:

  • Blue
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Red
  • Yellow

It appears search results are still orange for most users. However, the Google experiments news blog All Google Testing says users can enable these tests by inserting updated code into their browsers.

Many of the tests collected show a five-star rating for the search results, regardless of what the actual ratings are. For example, when searching for "Foster's Hollywood Reviews" without the test enabled, users see an average three-star rating.

fosters-hollywood

However, when performing the same search in the testing environment, there are five stars across the board.

fosters-hollywood-via-all-g-testing

Stacey MacNaught, search director at multi-screen digital marketing agency Tecmark, took to Twitter on August 28 to share her observations, including asking why there are five-star ratings for businesses that clearly shouldn't be there.

Below are additional examples of the new star colors from All Google Testing:

blue-stars

grey-stars

red-stars

yellow-stars

About the author

Ashley Zeckman is the director of strategy and development for Gruen Agency, a Minneapolis-based digital marketing agency. She is responsible for the digital marketing strategy for the organization, which includes branding, search engine optimization, social media, content marketing, and PR.

Prior to joining Gruen Agency, Ashley was the director of marketing and client relations for Benovate, a population health management company. Ashley also held the position of marketing manager for TopRank Online Marketing, a digital marketing agency. Her areas of expertise include content marketing, social media marketing, communications, client relations, integrated marketing, marketing strategy, SEO, digital PR, blogging, B2B and B2C marketing, customer segmentation, and social media strategy.