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How to get Google to STOP adding "20+ items" snippet to result

     
10:06 pm on Feb 28, 2012 (gmt 0)

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joined:July 6, 2007
posts: 12
votes: 0


I run a website which is having strange Google results. For some queries, Google is truncating the meta description and adding its own snippet, so the result looks something like:


Page Title
www.mysite.com
20+ items a truncated meta description (one line) ...
subcat 1 name subcat 1 description ...
subcat 2 name subcat 2 description ...


It is more or less described [insidesearch.blogspot.com ] but it doesn't have the bullets (I think Google stopped doing them some months back as described [webmasterworld.com ])

Now, I understand how for some sites this could be helpful, but for my particular site it looks terrible. There's hardly any meta description shown, and the "items" it pulls are not very useful to the results. One would think the "items" are products (on an e-commerce site) but in my case, they are actually subcategories.

I would like to have it just not display that snippet so the full meta description can be shown.

The relevant HTML for the portion that its pulling the snippets from looks something like:


<div class="category-list">
<div class="category-list-item">
<div class="category-list-name">
<a href="http://www.mysite.com/sub1.html">subcat 1 name</a>
</div>
<div class="category-list-description">subcat 1 description</div>
</div>
<div class="category-list">
<div class="category-list-item">
<div class="category-list-name">
<a href="http://www.mysite.com/sub2.html">subcat 2 name</a>
</div>
<div class="category-list-description">subcat 2 description</div>
</div>

etc...


Does anyone have an idea on how I can get Google to stop doing this? Do I need to format the HTML differently? Are the CSS style names influencing it, or just the structure?
10:40 pm on Feb 29, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 26, 2000
posts:37301
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I think it's the structure - that and the fact that Google just recently changed the way they create Sitelinks - something they seem to tinker with continually.

I also think it's unlikely you're going to have much influence on this - at least not without doing some major code surgery. Is it really that a problematic snippet for you?
10:45 pm on Feb 29, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member g1smd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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posts:18903
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I've seen this type of snippet pulled directly from bullet-point lists.

I guess it might also be pulled from data in tables.

I haven't seen it returned from divs, but the example code does use the word "list" in the class names.
10:59 pm on Feb 29, 2012 (gmt 0)

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joined:July 6, 2007
posts: 12
votes: 0


It is problematic for us because its not really very relevant to the search results, it is confusing to someone who sees that link, and by including it, Google reduces the meta description shown to a portion of one line. I believe it is definitely hurting clickthrough. I can certainly change the "list" in the CSS if that's what it would take, I'm curious if anyone else has seen this and if they also use list, or if there's any more info out there.

I think Google thinks that these "items" are products, so they are trying to display them, but they are not products, so its confusing.
 

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