Ranking Signals for Google Hummingbird Announced

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Google officially announced the release of a new algorithm within its search engine, named “Hummingbird”. Since its release, Google has claimed that it has affected as much as 90% of all search queries. Despite the 90% of searches that were affected, industry experts across the world were completely unaware of the update.

So, you might be asking; why did no one notice the update? Well, we have thought long and hard about this and, in our opinion, it is because the update itself targeted longer-tail keywords, which meant that it didn’t really have that much of n effect, if at all, on shorter terms and key phrases. The major kinds of content that Hummingbird affected, in fact, were “How To...”, “Where To’..” and “Guide On...” pieces of written content that worked to answer a specific question or solve a specific problem.

Google’s Hummingbird – What Do We Know So Far?

There is still a great deal of information that, in typically Google fashion, hasn’t really been made available to search engine marketers and content creators, but we do know why the update was actually released.

Hummingbird was released:

  • To help end-users find correct and high-quality answers to their specific questions.
  • To support the growing use of Google Voice/Siri/Cortana.
  • Because mobile searches and interactions on the move have outgrown the traditional method of desktop searching.

Fortunately, we also know what ranking factors were affected by this algorithm and which need to be addressed in order to appeal to the users whose searches have been improved by Hummingbird. The ranking factors affected are:

  • Content Quality And Readability
  • Keyword And Synonym Usage
  • Surrounding And Related Topics
  • Well-Structured, Logical Content

Hummingbird uses the above information to work out exactly what your site, and your content, is actually about, and how good an experience the user will have whilst engaging with your site. With such a large amount of content being produced every single day, it is massively important that you actually offer the very best answer from across the entire internet.

Did Hummingbird Have Any Effect On Links?

Simply, the answer is no. We’ve heard people worry about this before, but if your site was affected by Hummingbird, then it was simply because of the content on your site. It can often feel easier to blame poor links or dead links, but as Hummingbird was primarily a content-focused algorithm, if your site suffered then it was simply because of the poor quality on your website.

How Can You Work To Improve Your Visibility, Post-Hummingbird?

You can actively increase your visibility, and regain any traffic that you might have lost, just by spending some time revisiting your old content; that’s right, every single page. Use your analytics software to gather information on pages which have suffered a decrease in traffic or SERP rankings and take the time out to go back, look at them according to your modern standards of content creation, including SEO techniques and synonym usage, structure your content in a way that makes it easy to digest, understandable and offers a clear conclusion.

It will take a long time, particularly if you’ve got hundreds and hundreds of pages of content on your site, but it will definitely be worth it. Add images, videos and links to great sources that really back up the information you are presenting. Above all, focus on your user’s interaction – if the content doesn’t present valuable information, then you really need to act quickly. Great content can convince a user to continue the journey through your site. Google actively seeks out information, and you can validate the information that you present just by ticking all of the above boxes.

The whole idea of a blog post, or an article, is to capture someone’s attention; give that person the information that they require in order to make an informed decision on their situation.

White Hate Techniques That Will Last Forever!

White (and Black) hat techniques are phrases that you can’t help but run into if you’re interested in digital marketing, particularly content marketing, but do you really know the difference between the two?

Essentially, white-hat marketing has a lot in common with viral marketing, which is a great way of getting content shared across the internet. Why are people sharing this content? Well, because they genuinely connect with it, understand it, and think that it will be useful to others.

White-hat marketing techniques include:

  • A Great Website Design
  • Helpful, Easy-To-Understand Content
  • Unusual Content, Including Video-Marketing Campaigns
  • Infographics And Images
  • Engaging Content, Including On-Page, Blogs And Articles
  • Interactive Websites

Now, a lot of people see this as kind of a waste of effort. However, these people don’t seem to understand that the main goal of content marketing is, simply, to drive sales, increase conversions and heighten brand awareness.

Increasing searches for your brand, or overall interest in your brand, can naturally drive traffic to your site, boost your page positions and give your site a much greater sense of authority, all because a few people really connect with your brand.

If you’re ready to make the most of the latest white-hat techniques and take advantage of the wonderful benefits that Hummingbird can provide to businesses, get in touch with SEO Junkies today by calling 0118 380 0203, or email us directly at sales@seojunkies.com.

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