How did Google Hummingbird update effect your website?
In late September, Google updated its search engine algorithm, Hummingbird, for users who use their search engine to find whatever it is that they are looking for. This comes as no surprise to marketers all over the globe as Google has been known to update its algorithm in the past (Panda) without strong warning from the tech giant. Google updates their algorithm once every couple of years to go along with their views on what search engine results should yield to users by giving knowledgeable and legitimate sources to make the best decision possible for consumers. When interviewing a web designer for your next project, make sure you ask them how they optimize for the Hummingbird update.
Since Google is the #1 search engine in the world, businesses and consumers are at the mercy of Google to what Google feels is important for consumers which is finding the best information possible based on the search query that is entered. Google strives to give users the knowledge to make the best decisions with all the information
So what does this mean for you, the business owner? For starters, Google has been hinting at an algorithm change for several months as they tested different tweaks to their formula. With their knowledge-based approach to search engines, the new update favors businesses who have an all-around great web presence with a legitimate website that is properly built with little to no mistakes on the site structure such as 404 errors.
Another factor that Google used in their update was the use of Social Media and share able “evergreen” content as a part of a business’s web presence in ranking order. This change was expected as many consumers visit social media pages for recommendations from past consumers. For example, if a company has a Google Plus page, Facebook page, and updates it frequently, they will be favored over another website which has little to no social media presence or a social media presence that isn’t updated on a frequent basis.
The biggest keys to take away from the algorithm change is to make sure your company’s social media pages are being utilized, your webpages are properly optimized, that they are functioning properly (no 404 errors, etc) as well as to make sure your business is putting out new content that is useful to consumers who will be searching for you online!