What’s Google’s SEO End Game?
There are few people who wouldn’t agree Google’s end game remains the same: To provide users with the best possible experience.
However the way it achieves its aim is changing. Not only that, but in an effort to control user experience, Google may decide to curate an increasing amount of content or reward factually correct content.
Right now as I write this, Google will be drawing on its own artificial intelligence (AI) resources. Why is this likely to be true? Google has made a number of strategic acquisitions in this area and there’s definitely been a step change in the operation of algorithm updates. You only have to reflect on the fact there have been fewer public announcement of updates this year. While giving the SEO community some notice on occasion, as per the 26 April change, it appears Google is moving to a model of continuous change.
If some application of even soft AI is already underway, where are we heading? Google is already able to compile Knowledge Graphs and curates some medical information so that people can have access to accurate facts. Are we therefore heading towards a situation where Google does our thinking and content for us?
Only time will tell, of course. To the extent AI is allowing Google’s algorithms to understand information, the focus of the web community must be on content and its marketing within an SEO framework of course.
Quality content is a term that’s bandied about though few stop to explain what it actually looks like. Content should be factually correct and well written. It should also be useful or funny or moving, clear and well researched and read naturally. You should be clear in your own mind what it is and only produce or commission content which meets specific goals. At the same time, try to understand as much as you can about the Knowledge Graph. This has been put together using machine learning, and it’s likely to reflect what’s to come.
No matter how good the content you produce, keywords must be embedded in content that supports user intent. Failing to do this, just increases bounce rates i.e. produces a bad user experience. My hunch is businesses often feel they have got a good grip of keywords and phrases. However it’s often the case customer intent hasn’t been properly considered. It needs to be.
Now, I am always saying don’t put your eggs in one basket, and all of the above is a good reason why you should broaden your online marketing as far as is practical, but at the same time keep it joined up (connected). Ignore social media marketing at your peril.
The future is likely to be one of evolution rather than step change. While it’s impossible to predict the future you can bet Google and its algorithms will get even smarter with the increasing application of different forms of AI.
I will leave you with this parting thought. If all content was the best it could be, even in the realm of medicine, Google wouldn’t need to be a curator / writer of content.