Panda, Penguin, now Hummingbird – you’d be forgiven if you thought that Google’s latest algorithm update was just one more iteration of business as (sort of) usual for the big G. And you’d be missing out on a great opportunity to retool your SEO strategy if you did.
This really is a massive update, probably the largest since 2001, according to SEO consultant Shepard Morrow of Location Traffic. Morrow stresses that this time, the change means Google now is looking beyond just keywords, and trying to analyze a searcher’s intent to deliver more relevant results.
When it was announced last month, many marketers kinda went a little nuts, especially as it dovetailed with the big bomb that search activity will now be encrypted.
Loosely translated, keywords just aren’t what they used to be, either as a tool for analyzing site traffic or drawing eyeballs through the search engine. Now it’s more than ever about long-term attention to creating and publishing useful, relevant information.
The end of the world as we know it? Not quite, but it does make it more important to publish for your readers, and not for the search engines.
Per Morrow, “In short, Hummingbird continues to emphasize Google’s focus on search where ‘Content Is King.’ The best way to improve your search rank is to identify your target audience and keep their needs in mind when developing your on-going web strategy.”
Great advice for any publisher, and more important for online content than ever.