A JSON-LD for SEO customer asked yesterday about the future of JSON-LD which was rather timely given recent news with data-vocabulary:
Is there a chance the app could become redundant in the future? Or will Google be using JSON-LD for the foreseeable future?
No one can predict the future of Google but they have been integrating JSON-LD into more and more products over time.
It’s a big part of Search, Image Search, Ads/Merchant Center/Shopping, Search Console, Gmail, and probably others I’m forgetting.
That’s just Google. There’s also Bing, Yahoo, Facebook, Pinterest…
As of right now JSON-LD is Google’s recommended structured data format. It has been for a few years now.
One way to look at this is to see how they treated a prior structured data type.
Back in 2011 the data-vocabulary type was phased out of the search engines in favor of the Schema.org type. But Google still supported data-vocabulary until April 2020 when it’s going to actually be removed from Google. So it’s been a dead technology for 9 years before it stopped working in Google. Even if JSON-LD is replaced by a newer technology tomorrow, it’ll have a long life before it’s completely unsupported.
(And don’t forget how many Google products and initiatives end up getting cancelled or closed after they are tried for a bit)
But until that happens, JSON-LD for SEO is the safest, most effective, and fastest way to win Rich Results from Google. It’s helped thousands of stores acquire Rich Results since 2015 and there’s no sign of it stopping.