Is Google’s Algorithm update Hummingbird Really a Big Deal?


Over the past fortnight I have heard an awful lot about Hummingbird. How it is going to destroy many businesses and wreck the free flowing search ability of Google users. This is beginning to puzzle me greatly as nothing about Hummingbird has anything to do with destroying a company’s website. In fact, it is more about heralding a better search experience for users.

So What is Hummingbird?

What Google is trying to do is create a more “easy flowing” experience for those searching online. Really to carry on where they have started, in my opinion, with predictive text and searches and look for whole sites that can help to satisfy a user’s needs as opposed to single keyword searches. Look how Google Glass and the general Big Data move in search tech to see how it is possible to help users find out exactly what is best for them based on their prior searches, history, social media etc. Google is just looking to make sure that sites that come to fruition for a searcher are targeted to these general trends as well as the keywords being typed. Expect Google to utilise/encourage more longer tailed phrasing in its searches to offer as detailed a search result as possible. Quite how they are looking at an entire site per search at one hand, yet telling us that it is looking at unique web pages on a site through its Panda update this year is still something that puzzles me.

What does this mean to SEO agencies?

Not a lot really is the answer. According to Endurance SEO, strong authority links from good content are still important. Quality, useful and informative content is equally important. There are going to be changes as to how you target search terms as they begin to melt into long tailed and detailed search queries based on a multitude of different metrics. However if you are writing a lot of detailed and useful content on a site, as well as reaching out to relevant authority places to promote that content, it will become easier to spot where you are ranking well. You will also be able to see where traffic is faltering on your site and hopefully make sure that you write more stuff that is attracting interest. I would think that tools like Google’s keyword tool are going to become more redundant as traffic isn’t sent through specific search terms, but more along phrases that are in tune with what those searching are akin to.

Panda & Penguin algorithms will continue to search out bad links and content pages, whilst Hummingbird will look to make sure that the search engine is offering up very specific longer tailed results, more in line with the trends and personalities of those searching.

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