Google Started Changing the Way Search Results are Shown

Every time Google changes the algorithms of its search engine, it sends shivers down the spines of many who rely on that calculation to get a better placement on the search engine’s result page (SERP). That is why Google is very careful and secretive when a change like that is coming. But Amit Singhal, the top Google Search executive, confirmed recently they are working on something big.

What they are trying to do, he said, is for the search to work more like we humans understand the world.  By cross referencing millions of entities that Google has been collecting in the past few years, the new search engine algorithms will attempt to understand the context of the query and give direct answers instead of sending you to a website to find out by yourself.

For example: If you ask what the deepest 10 lakes in the US are? Today, you are getting results based on the keywords and a list of websites talking about lakes, but not the exact answer to your question. In the future the first thing that will appear is a direct answer to your query. You can see it already happening with the “best guess” results. Type in “who is the chancellor of Germany” and see what you get.

Another example: If you ask information about a place, Lake Eerie for instance. Today you get all the websites that have anything to do with the lake. In the future, first you will get all the information Google has collected about the lake: depth, location, altitude, average temp and so on.

Google and Metaweb Tech

A little more than a year ago Google purchased a start-up company called Metaweb Technologies. The company had an index of 12 million entities; movies, books, companies and celebrities. (For the sake of comparison, Wikipedia has 3.5 million English entries.) Amit Singhal said that since this acquisition they have expended the index to 200 million by developing “extraction algorithms” that can organize data in a semantic way from around the web.

What would it do to the listings on the first page if a large amount of information will appear first? A person who was briefed on Google’s change says it may impact directly the results of 10%-20% of the queries. There are billions of queries performed each day.

Google hopes that with the new search results, people will spend more time on their page and see more relevant ads, but it is still unclear how it would impact the ads which appear beside the search results. People familiar with the project say the changes will appear in the next few months. Amit Singhal says it will be rolled out slowly and will be a year-long process.

Author:

@BasilPuglisi is the Executive Director and Publisher for Digital Brand Marketing Education (dbmei.com). Basil C. Puglisi is also the President of Puglisi Consulting Group, Inc. A Digital Brand Marketing Consultancy that manages professional and personal branding for Fortune 500 CEOs, Hedge Fund Managers and Small Business Owners.

Sources:

Google Started Changing the Way Search Results are Shown

Image representing Google as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

Every time Google changes the algorithms of its search engine, it sends shivers down the spines of many who rely on that calculation to get a better placement on the search engine’s result page (SERP).

That is why Google is very careful and secretive when a change like that is coming. But Amit Singhal, the top Google Search executive, confirmed recently they are working on something big.

What they are trying to do, Amit said, is for the search to work more like we humans understand the world.  By cross referencing millions of entities that Google has been collecting in the past few years, the new search engine algorithms will attempt to understand the context of the query and give direct answers instead of sending you to a website to find out by yourself.

For example: If you ask what the deepest 10 lakes in the US are? Today, you are getting results based on the keywords and a list of websites talking about lakes, but not the exact answer to your question. In the future the first thing that will appear is a direct answer to your query. You can see it already happening with the “best guess” results. Type in “who is the chancellor of Germany” and see what you get.

Another example: If you ask information about a place, Lake Eerie for instance. Today you get all the websites that have anything to do with the lake. In the future, first you will get all the information Google has collected about the lake: depth, location, altitude, average temp and so on.

Image representing Metaweb Technologies as dep...

Image via CrunchBase

A little more than a year ago Google purchased a start-up company called Metaweb Technologies. The company had an index of 12 million entities; movies, books, companies and celebrities. (For the sake of comparison, Wikipedia has 3.5 million English entries.) Amit Singhal said that since this acquisition they have expended the index to 200 million by developing “extraction algorithms” that can organize data in a semantic way from around the web.

What would it do to the listings on the first page if a large amount of information will appear first? A person who was briefed on Google’s change says it may impact directly the results of 10%-20% of the queries. There are billions of queries performed each day.

Google hopes that with the new search results, people will spend more time on their page and see more relevant ads, but it is still unclear how it would impact the ads which appear beside the search results.

People familiar with the project say the changes will appear in the next few months. Amit Singhal says it will be rolled out slowly and will be a year-long process.

Author:

@BasilPuglisi is the Executive Director and Publisher for Digital Brand Marketing Education (dbmei.com). Basil C. Puglisi is also the President of Puglisi Consulting Group, Inc. A Digital Brand Marketing Consultancy that manages professional and personal branding for Fortune 500 CEOs, Hedge Fund Managers and Small Business Owners.

Sources:

The New Social Marketing Strategy with Google+

As a marketer, your social profile must be thriving on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. But the important question is, ‘Is it thriving over Google+?’ I can assure you that most of you will answer in the negative. However, it is not too late. Grab a business page over at Google+ as soon as you finish reading this.

Google is smart and knows how to beat down its competitors. When Google+ was launched, none had the slightest idea that it will be used as a cutting edge in the market by Google. Yes, Google has merged the search engine and the social network as one. This attempt by Google can be described as ‘Social Searching’.

Search + Your World

It is the new Search plus Your World (Search plus Your World) I am talking about. When you do a Google search, being logged into your Google+ account, you will find that results are being personalized to match your taste. Let us consider that you are searching for ‘body building tips’ and if one of your friends within your circle has written about it then it will be shown to you in the search results. Seems good eh? Here comes the truth.

Google, in the name of personalizing your searches, is forcing the results of Google+ under your throat. How? Let me explain in a more elaborate manner. Suppose you wish to know about a certain brand or celebrity and you would like to give a search over Google. In the search results you will notice that the brand’ or celebrity’s Google+ profile is given preference. Now, do you understand what Google is up to? Yes, it is competing with other social networks taking advantage of its search engine.

Google gives less importance to other social network’s posts and therefore the more urgency in getting your business page over Google+ as soon as possible. A business page over Google+ will help people find your business over search results. However, just a page is not sufficient to boost your business to the required level. Here is one of my social marketing ideas that you can incorporate in your business page over Google+.

Ways to Win at Google +

It is more likely that Google+ posts are to be shown in the search results. Include the keyword in the title as well as the body of the post so that it will help the Google bots to index it and show over the search results. Here comes an added advantage to you as a marketer by including the keyword in posts. Instead of explaining it let me show you with a theoretical example.

Let us consider that you have a blog/website dealing with ‘Diet’ and you wish to optimize a certain article or page for a keyword. When doing a keyword search over any keyword tool you find the keyword ‘diet foods’ has high volume of search and with lesser competition. On the other hand the keyword ‘safe weight loss’ has the same value as ‘diet foods’ to a certain extent. Confused, you optimize your content for the keyword ‘diet foods’ and therefore leave the keyword ‘safe weight loss’.

After posting the article (optimized for ‘diet foods’) over your site, you generally share it to social networks by just pasting the link and allowing the social network to grab the first five lines of the content. In case of Google+ you can try the other way around. The article which was written around ‘Diet Foods’ can also be written around ‘Safe weight loss’, though the latter keyword cannot compensate wholly but it can at least be used as introducer to the content. Yes, write a title and a short description around the keyword ‘safe weight loss’ and manually paste it to the Google+. Later you can include the link of your content and let the social network have its way with it.

What are the Pros?

What is the advantage of doing this extra work? Let me remind you again that Google is going to crawl every post in Google+ and therefore your post which has a short description given by you manually as well as the short description which Google + has indexed for you over its network are both going to be shown over search result. Irrespective of whether a user searches for ‘diet foods’ or ‘safe weight loss’, the chances of your post appearing in the search result will increase.

The odd of the post being shown to the users increases if the user is within your circle. Therefore, it is better that you start focusing on Google+. At the same time do not abandon your audience over other network, because who knows what the future of social marketing will be.

Before I can wrap up, some of you might know that Google provides the ability of depersonalizing your search results. Yes, it’s true. But how many of you will depersonalize your search results and opt for a more global search? Maybe some of us would depersonalize the searches and would like a pure Google search. Will the common user care to do it? I do not think so. When most users find what they are searching for, none will care to depersonalize their search results.

Author:

Richie Richardson is a Social Marketing Expert and SEO Analyst. You can reach him over his blog www.zarrylyms.com where he discusses on current issues regarding Social Marketing, Branding, Affiliate Marketing, SEO and B2B.

Sources:

VACATION: Escape from Digital World

Although my recent vacation to Colorado was not intended to be for this reason, it did turn out to be something of an escape from the digital world. I actually wondered if I would be able to go two weeks without the tremors of withdrawal from daily facebook contacts, exchange of e-mails, online bookkeeping, blogging, etc.

Escape

Escape from the Digital World © Beso.com

I am delighted to report that I did abstain without incident or discomfort. But I do have a confession to make. I had at my disposal both an iPad and an iPhone. They proved themselves to be essential traveling companions. In addition, the situation necessitated my learning how to use them. I now can text, download apps, do banking and enjoy their benefits.

There were many incidents when both proved themselves to be not only indispensable but also assets to our enjoyment. Let me elaborate. We spent a week in Denver, a lovely cosmopolitan area that has a downtown that has married the best of old and new architecture, is culturally rich and diverse, and because of my knowledge of Google searches, we were able to partake in quite a few of Denver’s offerings.

iPhone

iPhone, named 'Minnie Me' photo © Apple

We had met an Ethiopian gentleman at a 7-11 where we made our daily morning walk coffee stop. We got to talking and I inquired about Ethiopian food. Since I have an adventurous and curious palette, I was excited about experiencing Ethiopian food.

A simple Google search for ‘Ethiopian restaurant in Denver, Colorado’ took me to a list of places in Denver. After reading the reviews on several listings, it was easy to decide where to go. The food was fantastic. The service was excellent. The price was very reasonable.

Habesha Ethiopian Restaurant

Habesha Ethiopian Restaurant

They make bread that is like nothing I have ever tasted before in my life. It is in the shape of a pancake but has a spongy consistency with the taste of sour dough. One of these ‘pancakes’ is placed beneath the platter of food and several others are served on the side rolled up like cigars.

Reviews of Habesha Restaurant

Reviews of Habesha Restaurant

The food is eaten by hand in the same tradition of Indian food. One rips a piece of the bread from the platter benefiting from the contents atop it, vegetables and or meat as ordered. It is as delicious as it sounds.

Habesha Restaurant found on Google Places

Habesha Restaurant found on Google Places

Also in Denver, I needed to find some Asian foodstuffs as I had run out of seaweed and other treats. Once again a Google search did the trick. I found the largest Asian foods store in Denver. I could rival many in the NY area.

Pacific Merchantile Company

Pacific Merchantile Company

Pacific Merchantile Company's Google Place page

Pacific Merchantile Company's Google Place page

One minor but crucial search was for a Bank of America. That was a bit more challenging since the Google search did not reveal one essential factor. There are no actual branches. There are only kiosks within shopping centers or office buildings and much harder to locate.

The most significant use of our digital companions involved our fly fishing trip to Basalt in the mountains near Aspen. No search for where to go was necessary since we had found fly fish heaven the year before on the introduction to my beloved sport.

Fly Fishing in Basalt, Colorado

Frying Pan Angler is the best place to go for all your fly fishing needs.

But when I went online to review the place I go to for guides and equipment, I noticed only two reviews. One of them was less than glowing. It was listed first even though it was from 2009. That was easy enough to resolve. I added my own review(s) and made the owner of the Frying Pan Angler aware of the situation and suggested how they could easily overcome that outdated and unflattering review.

Frying Pan Angler reviewed as it should be.

Frying Pan Angler reviewed as it should be.

All told, I did manage not to read any e-mail. I had left an auto responder message saying that I had gone fishing. I did not check to see if there had been phone calls on my business number. I had given the same ‘gone fishing message’ there as well.

In conclusion, not only did I escape from my daily addiction to hours on the computer but also for a change, the digital world served me. I was not its slave.

Sources:
Google Searches
Google Maps
Google Places
Local Online Business Directories

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