Unparsable Structured Data Issues – How to Solve these Issues?

Unparsable Structured Data

The Unparsable structured data is a new report within Google Search Console that aggregates structured data syntax errors. Google rolled out these structured data errors in early May 2019. One of these new errors is called unparsable structured data.

It puts all the parsing issues, including structured data syntax errors, that specifically prevented Google from identifying the feature type. Google said, “that is the reason these issues are aggregated here instead of the intended specific feature report.” Google added that you can use this report to see if Google was unable to parse any of the structured data you tried to add to your site.

You can access this report here 

This report lists structured data found on your site that could not be parsed because of a serious syntax error. The intended type of structured data (Job, Event, and so on) could not be determined because of the parsing error.

Understanding your Google Search Console Unparsable Structured Data Issues Report

Once you get these errors, all items in this report are structured data errors; there are no warnings or valid items.

Errors are automatically sorted by severity as determined by most affected pages and other factors.

The most common cause of a single error affecting multiple pages is an underlying template error.

  1. Click an error row to see affected pages, error details, and links for debugging tools. See the full descriptions of the error types below.
  2. Use the Rich Results test to fix and test the syntax of your structured data.
  3. After you have fixed an issue, click Validate Fix in the error details page.

Note that after you fix a parsing error, you might trigger additional warnings or errors that were hidden because the item could not be parsed at all. These errors can prevent your page or feature from appearing in search results.

Unparsable Structured Data Issues – Error Types

Here is a little example of what these Unparsable errors might look like on your Google Search Console.

Error typeDescription
Invalid JSON documentThe JSON had a top-level syntax error.
Incorrect value typeThe value specified for a property was of the wrong type. For example, you specified a string when a number or array was expected.
Parsing error: Missing ‘:’Missing a ‘:’ mark.
Parsing error: Missing ‘,’ or ‘}’Missing a ‘,’ or closing bracket.
Parsing error: Missing ‘}’ or object member name
Missing a closing bracket or object member name.
Parsing error: Missing ‘,’ or ‘]’ in array declarationError parsing an array value: missing a ‘,’ or ‘]’ in the array declaration.
Unable to parse token lengthFor some reason, the start and end of a property or value could not be found.
Invalid numberProperty value expected to be a number, but another value type was used.
Empty escape sequence in stringA string value include an empty escape sequence character: for example:"description" : "Call me \ John"rather than"description" : "Call me \"John\"".
Bad escape sequence in stringAn invalid escape sequence used in a string value. For example:”description” : “Some \q unknown sequence”
Truncated Unicode characterMissing the last 6 characters in a Unicode surrogate pair.
Invalid Unicode characterMissing a \u token at the start of the second half of a Unicode surrogate pair.
Invalid Unicode escape sequence: four digits expectedA Unicode escape sequence has a syntax error: it should contain four digits.
Invalid Unicode escape sequence: hexadecimal digit expectedA Unicode escape sequence has a syntax error: a hexadecimal digit was expected but not provided.
Duplicate unique propertyYou provided two definitions for a unique property in your structured data object. For example, two @context values.
Invalid top level elementA top-level item in your JSON-LD is invalid.
Reference to nonexistent itemAn itemref attribute points to a non-existent identifier.
Source: Google Support

These look really intimidating but once you realize that they are all saying the same thing it becomes less daunting. All of these errors are basically saying the same thing, “You have a punctuation or spelling error in your code.”

Why you get Unparsable Structured Data Errors?

By this time you’ve got the point that these are some errors in coding. Now, these can be due to the uninstalling/installing of new themes, apps, plugins, etc. Or, you copied the content from a source having the wrong code. Besides, these can be due to the conflict of plugins and a number of such reasons.

Chances are your theme came with incorrect or incomplete structured data. All of these formatting errors are going to finally be caught and presented to you as unparsable errors. Also, theme developers aren’t SEO experts so they include structured data into their code, but it’s incorrect or not maintained which ends up in errors.

Okay, now that we know this info, let’s learn how to deal with it.

How to Fix Unparsable Structured Data Errors?

Method 1

If you want to fix them on your own, follow these steps below:

  • In order for these unparsable errors to go away, you’ll need to first pinpoint where the error is coming from (as shown in the video given below).
  • You can do this by testing out your website in the Unparsable Structured Data Report. This takes a couple of days to analyze and then report results.
  • Now that you know where the problem is coming from (your theme or an app), you can contact the app or theme developer in question. Kindly ask them to update their code for this error message to go away. If you’re using a Pro theme or plugin, you’ll be helped right away. Otherwise, you need to wait or look for other options.
  • If you do end up fixing an error, go ahead and click “Validate Fix” in the errors detail page.

Method 2

If you want to fix it, it can be extremely costly because you would have to hire a programmer. The best way to deal with having structured data errors is to make sure you provide Google with a good version of structured data. Below is the procedure of how you can share your particular issue with someone.

Issue details page

Selecting an issue row in a rich result summary page opens a page that contains details for that issue. An issue can affect items on different pages or multiple items on a single page.

The issue details page contains the following information: State Validation state of this issue. First detected The date when this issue was first detected on your site. If all issues of this type are resolved, and then a new instance of this issue appears within 90 days since the last instance was fixed, the date will be the original first detected date, not the date of the new appearance. Examples A list of rich results affected by this issue. It’s possible that not all instances of an issue on your site will be listed for various reasons, such as instances that have appeared since the last crawl of your site, or issues that affect more than 1,000 items. Last crawled The last time the page containing this issue was crawled.

Sharing the report

You can share issue details in the coverage or enhancement reports by clicking the Share  button on the page. This link grants access only to the current issue details page, plus any validation history pages for this issue, to anyone with the link. It does not grant access to other pages for your resource, or enable the shared user to perform any actions on your property or account. You can revoke the link at any time by disabling sharing for this page.

Exporting report data

Many reports provide an export button  to export the report data. Both chart and table data are exported. Values are shown as either ~ or – in the report (not available/not a number) will be zeros in the downloaded data.

It is recommend that you fix these issues when possible to enable the best experience and coverage in Google Search.

[Video] How to Solve ‘Unparsable Structured Data Issues’ [Hindi/Urdu]

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