(originally posted on Google productforums, which has yielded no response)

Can anyone give me any pointers about how Google decides what date to display for the SERPS?

We have noticed that dates being shown for our articles on Google SERPs are 'wrong', in that anything published early in the morning is showing up as the day before.

E.g. we have an article that has a timestamp of 2016-10-13T06:42:49Z set in the sitemap XML, the datetime attribute of the time element on the article page, and in datePublished and dateModified in the JSON-LD data in the article page.

On our own page, this publish date is correctly showing as 13th October. In google.co.uk SERPS, it shows up as 12th October. I could maybe understand displaying 12th October for dot com users if this was a deliberate choice, but for dot uk users this is definitely misleading.

Whilst investigating, I have also noticed this affects results from Twitter, where I see one date on SERPS and another on Twitter.

  • 1
    This does perhaps suggest a timezone issue - as you imply. Is your site geo-targetted in any way? Location of server IP? – MrWhite Nov 2 '16 at 13:33
  • 1
    we are on AWS - one in EU, one in US. – Dawn Nov 2 '16 at 13:48
  • Google is located in California. They have a tendency to show all time stamps in the pacific time zone. – Stephen Ostermiller Nov 2 '16 at 20:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.