Google revealed two big changes to search this past week that are sure to shake things up – the total encryption of organic keyword data and the introduction of the new Hummingbird algorithm.
Encrypted Keyword Data
Google’s first update is that all keyword data for organic searches will now be encrypted. This means it will now be very difficult for webmasters to figure out what keywords people are using to find their website.
This is bad news for SEO companies that rely on keyword results to legitimize their services; but it’s good news for consumers because these updates are ultimately driven by privacy concerns. In fact, word on the street is this process was sped up a following the recent NSA revelations leaked by Mr. Snowden.
The second Google update is the implementation Hummingbird algorithm. Unlike previous updates to the old algorithm (like Penguin and Panda), Hummingbird is brand new algorithm – top to tail.
Thanks in part to the ‘Conversational Search’ tool added to Chrome, Google has become much better at figuring out the intent behind search questions. While older algorithms focused more on the words we choose when typing questions into a search engine, Hummingbird now places greater emphasis on ‘semantic’ or ‘conversation search,’ which also considers how we use words when speaking with one another.
So Google is getting much better at find the answers to human questions, rather than delivering results based on specific keywords. And it’s doing more to protect the privacy of its user’s. So what’s the problem?
The problem is that a lot of companies pay people a lot of money to figure out how to game the system. And when Google changes the rules, those companies are left scrambling. But companies that focus on creating RELEVANT CONTENT that answers their own customers’ questions are just fine. In fact, Hummingbird should reward them even if it hides the actual keywords being used. But this has been Google’s intent all along.
Answering user questions and looking after their privacy is what makes Google relevant, not catering to the interests of established businesses. And these changes do that by helping level the playing field for organic search, while the established players can still pay to play.
- Google’s Hummingbird Takes Flight: SEOs Give Insight On Google’s New Algorithm
- Google’s Hummingbird Update And The Implications For Video SEO
- Did Edward Snowden Kill the Search Engine Optimization Industry?
- Google ‘(Not Provided)’ Keywords: 10 Ways to Get Organic Search Data
Bicycle Theory is a brand marketing company located in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, MN. Bicycle Theory provides strategic and tactical brand marketing services, including Web design and development, Internet marketing, brand strategy, and identity building.