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Elvinwebmarketing | Online Advertising | Search Engine Optimization | Google Hummingbird -Features and Implications

Google Hummingbird -Features and Implications

Google launched its latest search engine algorithm, Google Hummingbird, to coincide with Google Algorthim, seo, online, marketingits 15th birthday which fell on September 27th. The internet giant had begun using the algorithm almost a month earlier but chose to delay a formal announcement till September 26th.

Make no mistake about how massive a change this is. The smooth ushering in of the Hummingbird represents a significant shift for Google, which is unlike any other algorithmic changes or updates that have occurred in the past decade.  To put in perspective, Penguin and Panda were updates to the existing algorithm. This is a whole new algorithm!

So, what are the significant features of Hummingbird? How will it affect website owners, search results, and the overall experience for both information seekers and the providers?

The Hummingbird,  a small nectar-sipping bird with the unique ability to hover over flowers, gives its name to this algorithm and rightly so. Just like the precise and fast bird, this algorithm seeks to deliver precise results quickly. This has been made possible because Google is better placed now than it has ever been to understand human language.

With Hummingbird, Google looks to move beyond being a mere information retrieval system and become a personal assistant that helps us with answers. Two factors are prime movers in this well-thought out transition for Google. They are the huge amount of data at the company’s disposal and our dependence on smartphones for helping us with tasks.

Smartphones facilitate communication with Google through speech. Google strives  to answer our questions in such a way that we get a suitable answer without having to leave the search page. With Hummingbird, the search engine is striving to deliver relevant results for complex and long search queries, spoken not typed. These queries tend to be more specific and demand specific answers.

Hummingbird features consist of a better understanding of search strings, a focus on “conversational search” and more relevant answers. Hummingbird takes Google’s conversational search technology beyond its Knowledge Graph feature.

So, what does Hummingbird mean for site owners in terms of SEO? Thankfully, Google has not introduced any new SEO parameters. Hummingbird search parameters are in line with the Panda and Penguin updates. These updates dwelled more on the search engines ability to properly structure and make better sense of existing information. Webmasters and blog owners who heeded the changes that these two updates heralded can relax a bit, but don’t let up on quality content.

Also, there is no reason to believe that Google will deviate from its path of rewarding trustworthy content. Catering to a niche audience or having brand value does not guarantee good content. However, common sense tells us that if you’re writing on a subject containing specific, accurate information, you probably have expertise in the subject or product. This is the direction site owners should take. Exhibit your expertise. Write content that answers the whys, wherefores, what ifs, how and when.

As mentioned in the beginning of the article, Hummingbird has already been around for more than a month. If you haven’t seen a sizeable slump in traffic it means that for all practical purposes your site is Hummingbird ready. So, don’t be rash. Continue with the Google-compliant SEO techniques that you have been deploying so far. Continue building trustworthy backlinks. Remember, Google wants sites linking that have some sort of relevance to each other. Willy-nilly links will get you punished.

An old saying says that you can tell where someone is going by seeing where they’ve been. Taken in this context, Hummingbird is the natural next progression for Google. As Google goes, so goes the rest of the search engine universe.  Google wants to answer human questions in the most human way possible. If you do the same with your website, you will be all right.

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