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The Hummingbird Update and the Future of Search

Google Hummingbird Update
Google Hummingbird Update

It seems like Google updates more frequently than what we can keep up with them. Their latest update, the Hummingbird Update was announced recently even though they had been using it for about a month prior to the announcement. Some could take it personal when they are not “in the know” about which update is being initiated. The latest update to the algorithm is the Hummingbird update and it is one in which the entire algorithm has undergone a complete overhaul. Unlike some of the earlier updates like Penguin or Panda, Hummingbird is a total change to the algorithm. Penguin and Panda each dealt with one aspect of the algorithm, not the entire method. The latest update has refined how search results are gathered and displayed for users and it has sent ripples of discontent across SEO professionals. Knowing how the Hummingbird Update changes the world of search is important to web marketers and SEO specialists everywhere.

How Does Google Work?

Google
Google

Who hasn’t said, “It’s okay, I’ll Google it.”? This has become the standard response of the day when we do not know the answer to a question. But with literally millions of sites, how do we know Google will come up with the right answer to our question? How does Google find a restaurant or business in our general vicinity when we need one? The web is growing exponentially every day, but how does it come up with the answers to our queries?

Are Keywords Dead?

Online marketing is alive and well; but it is in a state of constant change. Semantic search has just changed everything once again and it has many marketers and SEO professionals scratching their heads trying to figure out what to do with the once important keywords. There are two schools of belief; one which feels that keywords are dead and will remain a thing of the past and another that believes keywords are still valuable and just as important as they have always been.

What is Semantic Search?

Semantic Search
Semantic Search

Users tend to want more from search results today than ever before. What we really want is for the search engines to know exactly what we mean by the query we entered. It can be frustrating trying to sort through irrelevant search results trying to find what we were looking for in the first place. Search engines are smart, aren’t they? Shouldn’t they know what you want? This is the premise behind the latest changes in search engines and how they produce results. Both Google and Bing are starting to look for ways to give users the precise information they are looking for in a much faster way. The latest changes in the way searches are conducted are attempts to make the results more relevant by figuring out what the user meant by the query. This in a nutshell is semantic search.

SEO in a Post Keyword World

Keywords
Keywords

There is a lot of talk about SEO being dead, especially with the most recent changes to search algorithms. Yes the changes are big; but let’s think about what has not changed. Online marketing is still thriving and marketers are still thinking about how to reach their targeted audience. Marketers want to reach the audience that has an interest in their product, use the search engines to drive relevant traffic to their site and get the greatest sales possible from the traffic. SEO is still beneficial for driving traffic; it’s just that it is more important now to achieve the optimal traffic from the search engines and the way it is done is slowly changing once again.

How Does Google See My Website?

Penguin Update
Penguin 2.0 and Google

Google is constantly being changed to update the way that it sees WebPages. While Google openly talks about their goals of weeding out low quality sites that do not satisfy surfers with good quality content, the algorithms remain shrouded in secrecy. Here is a few of the ways that Google sees your website and how it comes up with the order of the results for related searches.

Educate Yourself

If you do not know how Google sees your website it is hard to improve your organic search ranking. You must educate yourself about search engine spiders and make sure that they can easily navigate your website. They are unable to pick up on more advanced features like JavaScript. WebPages written in HTML that validates, there shouldSEO be no issue in the bots working their way through your website.

Is Anchor Text Still Important for SEO?

 

Anchor Text vs Co-Citation
Anchor Text and Co-Citation

Search Engine Optimization can be done in many ways. Often, custom content is written for websites that makes use of different keywords that are likely to bring perspective customers to the site. Titles of pages are changed to showcase relevant keywords on the page as well. Metadata, or descriptions and keywords embedded in the page, also play an important role in SEO. Building natural links with other websites is another way to drastically improve your search engine rank. There is one other way to boost SEO that is rarely talked about anymore. Anchor text is still important to the algorithms of search engines and can be a quick and easy adjustment to your site that might generate traffic.

What is a TLD?

A top level domain, when it comes to the internet, is most easily described as an extension at the end of the web pages name. Websites can have all different kinds of endings including .com, .org, or .net and many others. Originally, .org was for non-profit organizations, .com was for commercial websites, and .net was for networks. The ICANN, or Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, manages  top-level domains. ICANN operates the IANA, or Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, as well. Here is some information about top level domains and how they can affect your company.

Is a .com URL Better than a .org URL?

Domain names
Domain names

There are a variety of domains to choose from when you are picking what you want for your website. They were all originally created with various meanings while, over time, they have lost this specific classification. You can choose between .com, .org, or thousands of other domains to create a website name that is right for you. Here is some information on a few of the domains you can get and some history concerning them.

Some Domain Rules

Before jumping into the domains themselves, here are some important rules you will need to remember. The name can contain any number, letter, dash, or hyphen. Although they can have dashes and hyphens, the domain name may not begin or end with it. The system is not sensitive to a letters case so your site can be written with any combination of uppercase and lowercase.

What is Natural Link Building?

Link Building
Link Building

Natural link building is another way, besides using custom content with integrated keywords, to help your site get a higher rank on search engines. This is a form of off-site search engine optimization that can help you jump up into the spot on Google you want. There are many common ways of building natural links to your website. Here are a few examples of moves you can make to improve your websites natural link building.

How Natural Link Building Works

If someone puts a link to your website or blog because they enjoy your site and want their own readers to enjoy the content as well, this is a natural link. Any site that points visitors toward your website can be considered natural links. Any link that does not involve your input is considered natural. This is not something that happens often, unprovoked. There are a lot of things that you can do to help your website generate some natural links.