15 Oct Understanding the Hummingbird Algorithm Update
Google’s new algorithm named Hummingbird was released on October 3rd and is set to rival Apple’s voice search Siri.
Obviously Google has released updates over the past couple of years including Panda and Penguin but not since 2001 have they introduced a totally new algorithm. This is an interesting step for Google and one to watch!
What is Google’s new algorithm update and how does it affect me?
Google’s Hummingbird is a platform that enables Google to deal with conversational search requests from web users. Generally with search queries individual keywords or phrases are identified, but with Hummingbird the whole sentence it considered by Google and then provides the user with the most relevant results which also gives background and supporting information.
Too often we find ourselves having to increase the number of words we use when searching and to gain more accurate results, this becomes increasingly annoying and time consuming. This has always been because the results that we receive match the combination of keywords and phrases rather than the actual meaning of the sentence.
Hummingbird results will now reflect the full meaning of longer search results. More importantly Google’s algorithm update will now focus more on words such as when, where, why and how in addition to content keywords that have been generally been used over the years, providing the user with far more answers to their questions rather than just the bog standard results.
There may be certain implications to people who use long tail keywords in their content. Long tail keywords have generally produced a high conversion rate, providing the website with highly targeted traffic. Instead Hummingbird will now provide results for a number of words at a time rather than breaking them down into individual results.
As the number of mobile voice searches are increasing, Google understands that when a person searches they don’t tend to use keyword rich language, which in the past provided poor results.
Hummingbird will definitely address this problem but at the moment has a long way to go as Apple’s Siri is the most used mobile voice search which uses Wolfram Alpha and Yelp. Wolfram Alpha has had search options since 2012, so there’s quite a long road ahead for Google’s Hummingbird.
As we look forward, hot wording (which is the catch phrase used to operate Google Glass or conversational search) is the direction this technology is heading.
The future of search looks like this;
Important Information: Google’s keyword search will be replaced by Google’s semantic search. They will encrypt all future search results which means that all keywords used in content will not provide analytical results in Google Analytics. Eventually this will motivate people to upgrade from the free account to Google’s paid for premium products which is no doubt where they’re heading with these major changes.
As Google Hummingbird algorithm continues to improve you will find it will be able to answer more complex questions which will certainly be beneficial to every user. The focus now needs to be on consistent quality and original content which answers the questions your audience is asking, marrying this with a social media presence will enhance your search results in Google and draw traffic to your site and brand.
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