I was reading the official Google blog about how they are making searching more user friendly in Catalonia and Estonia…but really, these were just examples, and what they are doing is just us applicable to New York or Melbourne. Using an Estonian example, they show how someone looking for a barber would be also considered to be looking for a barbershop. In other words, Google is working more and more on understanding the meaning of what we search for, not just the words.
For those of us who are searching, this reduces the guesswork of which words the website owners have chosen to use. For those of us who want Google to recognize the meaning of our wbe pages, it means we have to be more holistic in our explanations. The text welcoming visitors to the barber’s website should also include words like barbershop, shave, cut, hair, stylist, etc. It means to worry a little less about keywords and a little more about all-the-possible-keywords your visitors might be using when they think about your products, servicess or topics.
Those of us in the business have known this was coming, and some of us have suspected for a while that Google has been slowly getting better at understanding meaning, alternate spellings and alternative searches (Try searching for metal bending to see what I mean.) But this talk from Google sends a pretty clear message that they are serious about it and moving forward at a good clip. And can Yahoo and the rest be far behind?David Leonhardt
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