Google Hummingbird: Not as Scary as You Think
Google recently released its Hummingbird update, and the funny thing is that it denied the release publicly, even though SEOs knew about it for more than a month before its official recognition.
The good news about Hummingbird is that if you’ve been doing white hat SEO, you either weren’t affected by the change, or you were affected in a positive way. Hummingbird really accomplished two major changes:
1. Increased Google’s semantic understanding. Semantics, in search, refers to Google’s ability to understand the concept a searcher is looking for when they type in a search term. In the past, if you would have searched on the “nearest restaurant in Las Vegas,” Google would have returned results matching “restaurant” and “Las Vegas.”
Instead, it’s now going to return the nearest restaurants to your search location, along with their exact distance away. If you haven’t already figured it out, this type of search is especially targeted at mobile searchers.
2. Increased the size of Google Knowledge Graph. Google’s Knowledge Graph contains 570 million objects and 18 billion facts that are likely to be searched for. Now, that number has skyrocketed. So if you search for a list of impressionist painters, you’ll get the entire list as well as their works.
How Should Your Business React?
If you look at Google from a very high level, what it’s looking to do is to serve up search results that provide a better quality user experience than any other. Your website should be all about branding – becoming the best solution in the marketplace to your customer’s problems.
You do that by providing thorough static content – FAQs, detailed service descriptions, describing your process and how you make recommendations to the customer. Then, you throw on top of it thorough blog articles. You also provide a regular newsletter that gives specific tips which help your customers. The more you can help your customers solve their problems, the more they’ll trust and eventually buy from you.
If You Give Away the Farm, Won’t You Lose Business?
Not likely. Just like you, people are busy and only have time to do so much on their own. They’ll do the simple stuff, but when they don’t have the time or they encounter a problem too much to handle, they’ll go to you because they feel you have their best interests at heart.
Some companies go as far as giving away some of their trade secrets, but you don’t have to go that far.
Yes, you still need to focus on keywords (even though Google is hiding all of that data now), and getting links, fast site load times, and all the technical SEO, but it’s becoming a smaller part of the pie that is successful online marketing.