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Google Hummingbird Update & Content Strategy

Date post:19-Oct-2014
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Structurally the Google Hummingbird update was one of the largest, but what does it really mean for search engine optimization, developing content and the role of content strategy.
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Presentation Deck - Blue V2

Googles Hummingbird Update Copyright 2014 Wire Stone, LLC. All Rights Reserved. HOW IT AFFECTS SEO AND CONTENT STRATEGY & CREATION

By: Kevin Gamache & Kerry Carnahan Ellis1Googles Ongoing Updates

500 600 Changes per Year

Link originally pointed at http://www.seo-positive.co.uk/blog/googles-algorithm-timeline-infographic/ but redirects to http://www.absolutedigitalmedia.co.uk/#6-Feb-14Link originally pointed at http://www.seo-positive.co.uk/blog/googles-algorithm-timeline-infographic/ but redirects to http://www.absolutedigitalmedia.co.uk/3Googles Ranking ProgressEarly Algorithm (mid-1990s) The most keywords on a page wins (and in the keywords meta tag)The PageRank Era (1998) Sergey Brin and Larry Page developed an algorithm that looks at number and authority of inbound links to a website.The Rise of the 200 (1998-2004) Search engines began implementing hundreds of ranking factors that they can adjust and revise to help compete against spamming attempts.The Panda Romp (2011) Google implemented an update codenamed Panda which targeted duplicate and thinly written content.The Penguin Walk (2012) This Google Algorithm change codenamed Penguin was aimed at penalizing manipulative link building.And

#6-Feb-144What now??!!

5Googles Hummingbird UpdateDanny Sullivan of SearchEngineLand.com was told by Google that they called it Hummingbird because it was precise and fastThis was a major change. It changed how Google gathers, understands and indexes.Hummingbird humanizes searches. It moves from breaking apart the query into keyword components to understanding the query as a whole and its intent.#6-Feb-146What does it mean for content development?

From Keyword to ContextFor many marketers this will not change HOW they create web content, it changes WHY they create content.Content is now built to solve for the search intent versus the keywords used in the query.Content, as it always should have been, is built for the user not the search engine.#6-Feb-148

#6-Feb-149

#6-Feb-1410From Keyword to ContextLook at your site as a collection of pages, a novel.Would you read a novel that said the same thing over and over again?Would you read a novel that said it was going to be a love story but only had battle scenes?#6-Feb-1411

#6-Feb-1412

#6-Feb-1413From Keyword to ContextEnsure you are covering specific topics in depth on separate pages.#6-Feb-1414

#6-Feb-14Rank 6th for Fabric Care Symbols15Being update proof

Stop looking over your shoulderWell at least a little bitThe silver bullet is content that your audience finds as authoritative, is well written, and gets shared.You may have the bullet but if you dont keep your gun in shape it is as useful as a rock.#6-Feb-1417Thinking Strategically About Content

Quality Content Matters. A Lot.First Know your usersAudience research and models are criticalSegmentation models and/or personas (if you can)Audience surveys or interviewsUnderstand their needs (intent)Then invest in useful, usable informationCreation + curationHigher-quality vs. higher-volume: Focus on relevance.Content structure/format aligned to user needs, not pretty designs#6-Feb-14this change reinforces the importance of high-quality content whose purpose is to help users with specific needs (search intent) rather than just sell your companys stuff. This means more thoughtful planning of content using tools such as personas and target audience segmentations, a better understanding of your audiences needs in the first place, and more focus on a better user-centered experience.

For example, a Web site that is developed using a meaningful set of user paths for different audience needs, with thoughtful content around each step in the path, will be more effective than a bunch of product pages and some sales messages with an old-school keyword-stuffed SEO page or two.

19Go Mobile. Now.Plan CONTENT FOR RESPONSIVE DESIGNsPresentation-independent contentAdaptive content modelingFocus on structureThe Mobile first approachStart small and work upCreate content that is usable on smaller screensClear language and next stepsHelp people understand how you meet their search intent#6-Feb-14From a search perspective, you need to have a Web site that Google feels is optimized for a mobile experience. If you are not serving up a site that is mobile friendly, you will be penalized by Google in search rankings. You can really target the key things people are searching for as a starting point for what needs to be part of the mobile experience. Its so important

Planning content for display and re-use on mobile devices needs to become a core part of your content strategy, planning, and development. This often means designing/planning for mobile first and scaling up (note the upcoming CS meetup on this topic on Feb 27)

20Theres Life Beyond Your WebsiteOptimize! Have a content optimization planKnow your KPIsAssign resources over timeContent creators and analytics need to work togetherComplementary content for Multiple channelsPlan for social media or other channel content to complement your website. Multiple shares and likes contribute to search authority.Highlight different aspects of your offerings in different channels, but connect them for a wholistic experience.Popular teasers, highlights, or videos are great for driving both traffic and search results to longer Web pages with more detail

#6-Feb-1421Q&A Copyright 2013 Wire Stone, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Thank you23

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