Google’s race for relevance: How does it affect content marketers?


It has become a natural routine for people to google on questions and information. Just by typing a few words, Google could deliver search results by matching webpages that have keywords similar to what I typed. However, we still have to go through the search results to find the most relevant information. Lately, Google has updated its search algorithm again. The new Hummingbird algorithm was launched in late September and it provides search results that relates to the contextual meaning of the typed words and phrases. Originally, people would see googling as a question and answer sort of search but this update has made the search more human sensitive and more similar to a conversation.

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What this means is that if I search for “USC football coach”, it would pop up a full complete profile of the current USC Football team coach, Ed Orgeron. Originally, the old search might only link you to USC football related webpages with the search words but now the semantic search will give you a overall profile of the person and may even list contacts or Linkedin pages of the relevant person.

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Another example is that if I type “the symptoms of asthma,” Google would have indexed an answer from and displayed the answer directly in the search results.

Obviously, this is a great improvement but how will it affect content marketers?

Our content might be filtered out easily. First, there are author rankings, if you have no reputation online, you’re simply a nobody or anonymous online, your content will not appear on the top results. Other than that, if your content has not been optimized properly with meta tags, Google will also filter out your results. Even if you have completed meta tags and descriptions, if you use the same topics for all your contents, it will be defined as less influential and eventually filtered out in the Google search too.

Thus, in order to successfully market your content, if is important to first publish on sites with reputation and authority as well as to have proper and distinctive meta tags and topics.


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2 Responses to Google’s race for relevance: How does it affect content marketers?

  1. shashali says:

    It is quite interesting that the improvement of a search engine actually can cause “trouble” to marketers. But I think Google can figure these all out. As the leader in the market, it applied the “pay-per-gaze” eye tracking system in developing the ad placing strategies. Technology is always the leader in a revolution. Marketing strategies should definitely follow up. And the first one that catches the trend will win the market.

  2. wanyang says:

    Thank for bring this interesting topic to the discussion. Recently, I read a book”the filter bubble” and one of the chapters introduces the Google’s search algorithm. The author illustrates that personalization is the solution for the information overload in the future data market. Google is internet giant standing on the cutting edge and constantly creating a better search service that tailor to different users preferences and needs. It means that even we type in the same phrase in the search box, we may get different results depending on our online information databases, such as ethnicity, location, interests.
    I tried to google the same term”USC football coach”.To my surprise, I did not get the profile of the current coach team but any related webpage with keywords. Although I still cannot figure out the reason, I am sure that Google’s content filter system become much complicated with the personalization feature. It is a really challenge for the search engine optimization.