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We had certain features like breadcrumbs, stars, the knowledge graph etc in the SERP's but we made a mistake and gained a manual penalty for spammy schema.

This has been resolved and the manual penalty was lifted a week ago but none of our schema features have returned, not even our knowledge graph.

Is this just a waiting game?

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  • Takes months... also, just because you have had a manual penalty removed, doesn't mean you have a automated penalty removed, since there are lots of different penalties, such as Penguin, Panda etc. Sep 15 '16 at 8:41
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    Would you mind sharing what this mistake was and/or what the penalty said? (I’m asking out of interest)
    – unor
    Sep 15 '16 at 9:21
  • Manual penalties are a knock on your trust score. You may have to wait a long time or may never regain your rank.
    – closetnoc
    Sep 15 '16 at 15:32
  • Hey, we incorrectly marked up some ratings on a page that isn't a product. Since its happened we actually haven't seen much negative impact on our rankings (yet) I was more wondering about the SERPs features such as breadcrumbs, date published etc....
    – GrapeSoda
    Sep 15 '16 at 15:49
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Google's John Mueller addresses this in this webmasters office hours video at 8:00 in

It’s almost never going to be that we will just restore the previous state because things evolve on the internet, things evolve in our algorithms and any previous state will be different when we look at it now. So even if nothing happened with your website with our algorithms in the meantime the rest of the web will have evolved, so that previous state might be different from the new state that that will come up.

In the case of a manual penalty, you may have been penalized for something Google didn't like, but which was helping you rank. When you fix your site for Google, it may eliminate that ranking factor.

In short, don't expect your rankings to return after a penalty from Google.

Google only pays attention to microdata markup for sites that it trusts. When your site is penalized, that trust is eroded. Google may choose to never show rich snippets in the search results for your site again.

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To update this post.

SERP features returned after about 2 months apart from the knowledge graph. That still hasn't returned.

Rankings didn't appear to be affected throughout the whole situation.

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