At some point in your day, you will most likely “google” something. You may have even come across this article by typing search terms into a Google search box. Google has indeed become fully integrated into our web-centric lives and, as an internet marketing and web tech development company, understanding the ever-changing convolutions that drive Google’s search results is an ongoing priority.
A common misconception we encounter among the public is the idea that Google simply matches search terms to keywords in a piece of content to determine its relevance to the inquiry, and then ranks that piece of content to create search results.
While this was probably a fair assessment in the very earliest days of Google, Internet search has long been one of the most complex arenas of human technology. And this past year, that complexity took on a whole new depth as Google introduced Artificial Intelligence into the mix.
Context Is King
If you have been around the web in a professional capacity for any length of time, you’ve no doubt come across the old adage, “Content is King.” With the introduction of machine learning into search algorithms, Google has taken search into a new realm, where the relevance of a given piece of content is based more on its overall context in the fabric of the web in relation to the person searching than possibly even the namespaces (keywords and key phrases) inherent in the content itself.
This can be hard to wrap your head around, but the gist of it is that by using artificial intelligence, Google is now extrapolating the inherent relationship of words on the fly, based on everything from up-to-the-minute cultural trends, to breaking news stories, to linguistic nuances, and then assessing their particular relevance to the actual searcher. This means that if you search for a specific set of keywords, Google may offer search results based on completely different sets of words with a more relevant meaning to the context of your life.
Internet Search Now Has a Brain
Google calls this new technology “RankBrain” and although it is one of many algorithms that determine search results, the fact that artificial intelligence has entered into that complex technological spaghetti of equations is a major sea change. Search now can think for itself, and because of this, web analytics are now more important than ever.
Good content is, and will always be, of utmost importance. But for anyone involved in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and web analytics, a lot of data that in the past was seemingly less important has now become a major focus as we try to get our bearings in this new landscape. The good news for us here at Blink;Tech is that our content production has always been informed by our clients web analytics. For us this will be a playground of possibility, and we are very excited about lies ahead.
In the end, no matter what changes with Google search, it is important to remember that Google’s ultimate goal is to provide their users with the most relevant search results possible. This means that if you best serve the interest of your targeted user, you’ve gone a long way toward helping Google do their job, and you will be rewarded with more web traffic. In that one way, not much has changed since the first day Goole.com went live.
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