Anyone using hreflang on their site should make sure they check their Google Search Console message center, as reports are coming in that Google has just sent out a large number of Hreflang notifications to webmasters who’ve got incorrect hreflang implementations on their sites. Web trends analyst, John Mueller, confirmed this action by Google in a recent tweet. Hreflang markup’s aimed at websites that deliver their pages to users around the globe through translated or targeted content for users in specific regions. Google makes use of rel=”alternate” hreflang=”x” to use the right language or URL for a specific region in its search results and pages with incorrect markup cause problems for Google, triggering incorrect hreflang implementation notifications. This isn’t the first time Google’s sent out a batch of notification concerning hreflang errors, as in July 2015 thousands of notifications were sent to webmasters who’d implemented hreflang incorrectly. However, it would now seem a new batch of webmasters are receiving these notifications for the very first time. The problems reported in this wave of warnings form the most common hreflang mistakes that webmasters can make, which are: • Missing confirmation links, caused by hreflang annotations that don’t cross-reference one another. It’s critical to confirm annotations from other pages, so if page A links to page B, page B must link back to page A, or annotations aren’t correctly interpreted. Often the problem’s caused by hreflang tags not including a reference to the page itself. Annotations must be self-referential, which means that page A must use the rel-alternate-hreflang annotation and link back to itself. • Incorrect language codes are being used by webmasters who aren’t choosing the correct country and language codes when adding hreflang codes to their webpages. Google stipulates that all language codes must identify the language in ISO 639-1 format and the region in ISO 3166-1 Alpha 2 format. Specifying the region alone isn’t recognised by Google. A recurrent webmaster error’s using ‘en-uk’ for English speakers in the United Kingdom, when the correct UK hreflang tag should be ‘en-gb.’ Hreflang generator tools can be used to help webmaster determine what values to use. Above all the message from Google is to make sure hreflang values are valid, or confusion will reign supreme!