Google Hummingbird algorithm

Keeping Up With the Online Marketing Times: Google Hummingbird

Google Hummingbird algorithmBy Guest Author

Google’s search engine is a learning resource, a place where scores of pages of information are stored.  However, unlike the Yellow Pages or a library’s card catalog, the sea of information is not static but constantly changing.

Google, modifying algorithms (the way its engine interprets, catalogs, and provides information), persistently seeks better methods of addressing user queries.  Some time ago, we witnessed the Panda update.  Panda sought to purge the web of poorly-engineered and duplicate content pages.  Afterward, Google introduced the Penguin update; this particular algorithm modification sought to extricate or lower in value pages with a high number of  incoming links that were automated or unethically engendered.

Most recently, Google unleashed the Hummingbird update, voiced to encompass over 90% of engine queries.  What does this mean for small businesses that want to use the web for increased exposure and added sales?

Less Blackhat SEO

‘Blackhat’ SEO has a terrible connotation.  In theory, blackhat marketers are not doing anything ‘illegal.’  The tarnished image comes from their regular practice of ignoring Google’s best practice suggestions.  In short, Google has reversed, stopped and de-indexed pages due to blackhat implementation.  Aside from taking the chance, smaller businesses no longer should assume blackhat SEOs can help as much as they once could.  Google’s search engine is becoming increasingly harder to ‘figure.’  That means blackhat SEOs’ traditional and new-fangled methods are questionable in facilitating better rankings.

Small businesses, adhering to the initial and ongoing suggestions of Google and engineering user-based content, have an equal or better opportunity to gain the attention of search engine browsers.

Smarter Conversations

Google’s search engine recently celebrated its 15th year.  Like people, the engine has evolved, gotten smarter, and capable of having ‘in-depth’ conversations with browsers.  Due to the use of voice search, peoples’ queries are becoming less elementary and more complex.  To compensate, Google engineers modify the way the engine understands queries and pulls from its millions and millions of resource pages.

The process is a cry for more user-based and broad content from brand producers.  For example, if one sells car covers, the reliance on content’s focus on the keyword, ‘car cover’ should not be as important as further associations and conversations a consumer may have.  Rather than focus a page’s content on car-cover ‘how tos’ and description, the vendor may benefit from broadening information to discuss the science behind the cover material or the geographic locales around the nation that use them more predominantly due to sun, snow, etc.


Recent research expects well over half of Americans to own mobile phones in coming years.  Additionally, more browsers use mobile devices aside from smart phones (like tablets and iPads) to not only peruse the web but make purchases as well.  As human behavior changes, we can expect Google and its search algorithm to modify with the times.

As mentioned, a huge catalyst to the Hummingbird update was the nature in which browsers interacted with Google’s voice search options.  Mobile users expect Google to understand robust speech, and Google engineers are complementing the robust speech with a wider array of mobile search results and capabilities to satiate a desire.  Aligned with mobile convenience are social review sites.

Google Plus

Google Plus is Google’s rebuttal to social platforms like Facebook and Twitter.  When Google realized a site, such as Facebook, was the final destination for a number of browsers, Google owners grew afraid of Facebook’s ability to steal traffic and search potential.  Therefore, Google invented its own social channel, Google Plus.

Taking things further, ‘Search Plus Your World’ allowed signed-in Google users to experience a tailored search experience, incorporating Google Plus results.  Taking things a even further, Google Plus is now incorporating into YouTube comments (YouTube is one of the world’s most-popular sites), helping to align more brand content with broad to specific consumer queries.  A number of web gurus suggest small businesses embrace and leverage Google Plus social and commercial opportunities.

About the Author

Bill Nixon is a small business owner with several years’ experience. When he has some free time, he likes to help others by sharing what he has learned by posting on various websites. He recommends Yodle reviews that allow interested consumers to learn more about the customer history and efficiency of brands in question.

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