A New Age of Google Search: What It Means for SEO

Not only is Google changing the way it presents information to users and updating its algorithms, the way users search is also changing.

SEO best practices change every year, so it’s best to stay up-to-date on what it means to properly optimize your website today.

Signals Of Authenticity And Usefulness

Google has released five product overview updates since April 2021.

Related guidelines published by Google for writing product reviews recommend specific on-page factors that must be present in order for a page to rank for product review-related search queries.

This is an extraordinary change in the ranking of sites. Google has redefined what it means for a web page to be relevant to a search query.

The definition of relevance simply meant that the web page must address what the user was looking for, in this case product reviews.

Product reviews were usually used to express an opinion about a product, compare the product’s features to the cost, and judge whether something is worth buying or not.

But now a website is not enough to review a product. It must also be authentic and useful. This is a big change in how sites are ranked.

Here are two product review Google ranking factors introduced in December 2021.

“…we are introducing two new best practices for product reviews that will take effect in a future update.

Google calls these “best practices,” but also says they’re “enforced,” meaning the algorithm looks for those two characteristics.

The first signal concerns the authenticity of the product review.

The second signal is specific to sites that don’t sell reviewed products and benefits site visitors by giving them multiple outlets to purchase the product.

Authenticity and usefulness as signals of relevance is a huge shift for SEO.

Search Is Increasingly About Context

Context is the setting in which something is said or done that gives meaning to those actions or settings.

Search context can affect search results.

What is happening is that Google is redefining what it means to be relevant by understanding the context of the user.

When a user searches for [pizza], Google doesn’t show pizza recipes; it shows local pizza restaurants.

Google defines the meaning of the keyword phrase “pizza” based on the user’s context, which includes that user’s geographic location.

Another context that affects search results is current events that can change the meaning of a search phrase. This is part of the freshness algorithm.

The freshness algorithm takes into account time-based factors that can change the meaning of a search phrase, and this affects how websites are displayed.

So, it’s the contexts of geography and time that influence what it means to be relevant to a search query.

Search Is Increasingly About Topics

As noted in the discussion of the 2013 Hummingbird update, Google is increasingly moving away from keywords and becoming more aware of the meanings inherent in search queries.

Google is also redefining relevance through the concept of topics.

If someone searches for [mustang], the most likely meaning is car, right?

Screenshot from search [mustang], Google, October 2022

In the screenshot above, Google lists several topics related to the Ford Mustang car.

Clicking on any topic above will display a different search result.

Some of the top-ranking sites appear on different topics because they are related to multiple topics. Something to think about, right?

Screenshot from search [mustang], Google, October 2022

In 2018, Google’s Danny Sullivan tweeted how to change search results by topic. These are the theme buttons just viewed above.

“There’s a new dynamic way to change results quickly, like how you can quickly change a dog’s breed.

It is powered by a topic layer that helps the knowledge graph tap into known topics about people, places, and things.

Screenshot from Danny Sullivan’s Twitter, October 2022

Google published a blog post about these changes and discussed them in the Dynamic organization of search results section.

In the article, Google explained that it organizes some searches by topics and subtopics.

“Every search journey is different, and especially if you’re new to a topic, it’s not always clear what your next search should be to help you learn more.

So we’re introducing a new way to dynamically organize your search results to help you more easily determine what information to explore next.

Screenshot from, October 2022

People Also Ask (PAA) is Google’s way of helping users get to the information they’re looking for, especially when the user is searching with a vague keyword phrase like CBD.

The queries listed in the PAA are topics.

People like to think of them as keyword phrases, but they are more than keywords. These are content web topics.

Screenshot from Google Search, October 2022

Clicking on the first topic “Does CBD do anything?” reveals an article on whether CBD products work.

Screenshot from Google Search, October 2022

Some people and tools like to use each People Also Ask suggestion box as keywords to use in one complete article.

However, what is missing from this approach is that each individual recommendation is a single topic for a single article.

Since Google likes to rank specific content, it would be better to create content for each topic rather than creating a giant multi-topic content page because a giant page is not very accurate.

Google continues to focus on topics.

On September 28, 2022, Google introduced more options for building search queries by topic.

When you start typing in the search box, we offer keyword or topic options to help you build your question. Let’s say you’re looking for a destination in Mexico. We’ll help you refine your question so you can navigate to more relevant results for you

— Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) September 28, 2022

Takeaway: Google’s Focus On Topics

Keywords are important because using the right keyword phrases correctly helps your content connect with users who use those keywords when searching for answers or information.

Experienced users use more jargon and less advanced users with less knowledge use more general terms.

With this understanding in mind, it’s important to remember that Google understands the world based on topics, not keyword phrases.

When Google looks at a page, it understands the page as: “What is this page about? What’s the topic?”

In my opinion, the content can look unnatural if the content writer focuses on keywords.

This happens because a keyword-focused article tends to meander as the author tries to include targeted keyword phrases in the article, sometimes repeating themselves.

Keyword-focused content feels unnatural because the author struggles to create sentences that contain those keywords.

A better way to create content, in my opinion, is to focus on topics (as well as usefulness!).

Relevance And Topic Category

For certain types of search queries, Google may rank sites that belong to a category of sites.

There is a 2015 patent called Resource Relocation Based on Category Quality that describes a way to rank web pages based on whether a content category matches the category suggested by a search query.

I believe this patent may be related to the August 2018 Google update called the Medic Update.

It was called the Medic Update because of the noticeable impact it had on the healthcare website category.

This patent represents a revolutionary change in how Google determines what is relevant for certain queries and discusses how it reorders search results based on whether a website falls within a topic category.

Google’s patent first describes two types of search: informational and navigational.

An information search is one that can be answered on many types of sites. Examples of Google’s information searches include queries about football and space travel.

It then notes that navigation queries are when users search using a site name, such as YouTube.

It then reaches the patent point, which is a type of search query that is relevant to the category of information.

“Sometimes, however, users may be particularly interested in a category of information for which there are many well-served resources.”

Therefore, the patent is called “reordering resources based on categorical quality” and abstractly (in the patent description) it says that it is about “reordering resources for categorical queries”.

The word categorical is used to mean something belonging to a category.

The simple description of this patent is that it ranks a search query and then applies a filter to the search results based on the categories the search query belongs to. That’s what the word “re-rating” means.

Reranking is the process of ranking websites for a search query and then selecting the best results by re-ranking the results based on additional criteria.

The next paragraph of the patent uses the words “quality condition” and “resources”.

In the context of this patent, “quality condition” means the quality of belonging to a category.

A “Resource” is simply a web page.

Two sequencing scenarios are first described. A normal ranking of websites (“search ranking”) and another ranking called “quality rank” which ranks pages within a “category”.

Remember that resources means web page and the quality condition is the quality of belonging to the category.

Here is an important passage from the patent:

“By searching around the search results for the correct subset of resources that meet the quality condition, the search system provides a set of search results that lists the resources in the category according to a quality ranking that differs from the search ranking of the resources obtained from the query.”

Next, the benefits of repositioning search results based on “category quality” are explained.

“Because search results are presented according to an order based in part on the quality of the category, search results are more likely to satisfy a user’s information needs when users make a categorical query for a category. .”

Finally, I draw attention to the section titled Detailed Description, where the patent goes into more detail.

First, it notes that when users do not know much about a category, they will not use language typical of that category and will instead use broader or more general phrases.

“…if the user knows very little about the category, queries are more likely to be broader.

This is because the user may not have an understanding of the category and may not be aware of the websites and resources that best serve that category.

Next, the patent says, it takes a general query related to that category and matches it to sites that fit that category.

For example, if someone searches for abdominal pain, Google can match that query to the category of medical websites and reorder the top-ranking search results to display only websites that belong to the medical category of websites.

The systems and methods described below reorder the resources of a broad categorical query according to their respective quality in the category to which the categorical query matches.

A reordered set of search results is more likely to show the websites and resources that best serve that category.

To Be Relevant Means To Fit Into A Category

The point of this 2015 patent is that Google probably changed the meaning of relevance.

For medical queries, for example, Google ranks websites using traditional ranking factors such as links and content.

But then Google reorders those search results, filtering out any sites that don’t fit into the correct category for that search query.

This change was a radical departure for Google in 2018, as it meant that alternative health sites that had previously ranked for medical queries stopped ranking for those queries.

These sites were not in the medical category, but in the alternative health category.

Google said the 2018 update wasn’t aimed at health sites; it was just more noticeable in this vertical.

This means that this change applies to many other categories as well.

This means that the meaning of relevance has changed for some queries. Certain keywords are not enough for content in certain verticals, the content must also fit into the right category, which the patent describes as “category quality.”

Precise Search Results And Keywords

Google’s search ranking algorithms have become more and more accurate.

The accuracy of search results is something that took off in a big way after Google’s Hummingbird update in 2013.

What made search more accurate after the Hummingbird update was that Google didn’t use all the keywords in the search query to find what was on the web page.

Instead, what happened is that Google ignored some words, especially in natural language type searches, and focused on what that query actually meant and used that understanding to match the search query to the web page.

Accuracy is an important thing to think about when considering how to do website SEO.

Google engineer (at the time) Matt Cutts explained:

“Kolibri is a rewrite of the basic search algorithm.

Just to better match user queries to documents, especially for natural language queries, you know that queries are getting longer, with more words, and sometimes those words are important and sometimes they’re not.

Cutts is quoted again in the article above, expanding on the idea of ​​precision:

“…The idea behind Hummingbird is that when you make a query, it can be a natural language query and you can add some words that you don’t necessarily need…

…Some of these words are not that important.

And in the past, Google only used matches for the words in the query.

Now we are going to say which ones are actually more useful and which ones are more important.

This was the beginning of Google’s evolution to understand topics and what users really want.

Most importantly, Google focuses on accuracy and this can be seen in their increasingly sophisticated ranking technologies, such as Google Lens, where Google can rank web pages based on users searching for images on their mobile phones.

For example, you can take a snapshot of an on-site error and search with it.

Precision In User Intent

A change in search engines dating back to around 2012/2013 is Google’s increasing use of user intent in search results.

Google did not report adding user intent to search results.

And a June 2011 Q&A between Matt Cutts and Danny Sullivan, where Cutts discusses user intent, went over the heads of the people who reported it.

In the Q&A, Cutts tells how Larry Page came to him and asked why the search results [warm mangoes] weren’t so good.

Cutts wondered what the user was looking for and discovered some facts about how warm mangoes ripen in a box.

I was there during the Q&A and was amazed by Google’s ambition to integrate user intent into search results.

But none of the 2011 reports understood how the search for [warm mangoes] fit into Cutts’ story, even though he mentioned the phrase “user intent.”

So, it was just reported as a fun anecdote about warm mangoes.

Over 10 years later, everyone is talking about user intent.

But there is a new understanding of intention that goes beyond this current understanding.

It is the understanding that user intent is more than just informational, transactional, etc.

These categories are actually very general, and actually a more nuanced way to understand user intent is to understand the verbs used in search queries.

Dixon Jones of Inlinks, a content optimization tools site, shares his revolutionary approach to understanding user intent:

“Verbs fundamentally change keyword research.

My best practice recommendation is to abandon the term “user intent” which is described as “informational/navigational/transactional/commercial or local intent”.

Dividing user intent into only four vague descriptions is not entirely accurate.

A user’s search intent is much more nuanced than trying to do one of four things, it’s more specific.

User intent is much better described by analyzing verbs.

Most keyword research data focuses on words or phrases without understanding user intent, which can lead to fundamental mistakes.

For example, a horse-themed site might do keyword research that finds search volume around phrases like “Mustang” or even “Horsepower,” which are completely different topics and concepts that may or may not be related to the website’s theme.

Here’s the key point: The words generated by keyword research are not specifically relevant to what someone is searching for without a verb in the context of the search.

The verb “to drive” and “mustang” together imply a completely different meaning and audience than the verb “to drive” and “mustang”.

Additionally, a phrase like “buy Mustang” is probably not relevant to a horse website, since the most popular intent is related to a car.

Without any other information about the user, you can’t know for sure other than guessing based on the most popular intent.

Google can learn more about a user based on their search history, but as an SEO, all you can do is follow the theme and purpose of your website.

If you start rewriting content around a keyword phrase simply because of high search volume, it’s possible that the site is losing context rather than improving context.

Analyzing verbs in keyword research is one of the ideas we’ve explored at

Using NLP algorithms can help weed out irrelevant keyword suggestions by checking the proximity of entities and verbs in user queries to the topics of your own content.

Search Queries Have Evolved

It’s important to note that Google continues to evolve the meaning of search. Originally, searching meant typing words into a desktop or laptop computer.

It then involved making those inquiries on a mobile phone.

This is now changing to include searching with images via the Google Lens app.

For example, I wanted more information about a bottle of wine in a store. I took a photo of it and submitted it to Google Lens, which returned search results for this wine.

What’s remarkable about the evolution of search queries is that Google is driving the evolution by creating new ways for users to search (eg Google Lens).

On September 28, 2022, Google announced nine new ways for users to perform shopping searches.

“Today at our annual Search On event, we announced nine new ways we’re changing the way you shop with Google, giving you a more engaging, informed and personalized shopping experience.

This experience is powered by the Shopping Graph, our AI-enhanced model that now understands more than 35 billion product listings – up from 24 billion last year.

And then there’s multisearch, a new way to search:

With multisearch, you can take a photo *and* ask a question to get the look you want or fix something. 🤯 We’re bringing this new way of searching to more than 70 languages. And soon you’ll be able to add “near me” to your picture to find what you’re looking for nearby. On #SearchSaid

— Google (@Google) September 28, 2022

Every change in how users can search and how Google presents information gives businesses an opportunity to tap into new ways of searching and discovering.

The old way, 10 blue lines, is long gone, fueled by changes in technology.

This is a new era of search. Are you in the know?

Featured image: Masson/Shutterstock

What are some useful SEO tips in 2022?

Here are some tips.

  • Stop focusing on things that don’t matter.
  • Always keep your search objective in mind.
  • Create compelling title tags.
  • Refresh shrinking content.
  • Boost important pages with internal links.
  • Improve page experience signals.
  • Double drop for mixed intent keywords.
  • Include FAQ sections.

What are the new SEO trends of 2022? In 2022, Core Web Vitals is at the top of the list because it has not only been a ranking factor, but is getting stronger every year. Core Web Vitals is a set of ranking factors that Google uses to see a user’s overall experience on a particular website.

Is Google being phased out in 2022?

In January 2020, Google announced that it was phasing out support for all Chrome apps, including WordQ for Chrome. The timeline they provided says that all Chrome apps will be completely shut down by June 2022.

Is Google going away? Support for the Google Keep Chrome app ended in early 2021. We moved Chrome apps to the web. Offline access to notes is available in the Keep mobile apps, but not on your computer. Access to Keep is no longer available on your Chrome OS lock screen.

Why are people leaving Google Chrome?

People may have used Chrome for speed, but if there’s one reason they leave, it’s privacy. Privacy experts have long warned that Chrome collects so much data about users that you’d be baffled if you even peeked into its server data sets.

Why is Google Chrome not good?

Google’s Chrome browser is a privacy nightmare in itself, because everything you do in the browser can then be linked to your Google account. If Google controls your browser, search engine and uses tracking scripts on the sites you visit, they have the right to track you from many angles.

Is there a better browser than Chrome?

Other important factors to consider when exploring Chrome alternatives include user interface and extensions. We’ve compiled a list of solutions that reviewers voted as the best Chrome alternatives and competitors, including Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Apple Safari, and Brave.

What browser is safer than Chrome?

Brave is arguably one of the best web browsers for all-round security. The open source browser includes a built-in ad blocker, script blocker, automatically switches to HTTPS, blocks all third-party storage, and protects the browser against fingerprinting.

Has Google Chrome been compromised 2022?

Google released emergency fixes on Thursday to contain an actively exploited zero-day flaw in its Chrome web browser. The vulnerability, tracked as CVE-2022-3723, is described as a type confusion in the V8 JavaScript engine.

Is Google Chrome going to shut down?

The blog below says that the Chrome Web Store will be supported until June 2022. However, the following blog says that support for Chrome apps will be extended until January 2025.

Is Google Chrome going to be discontinued?

Today, web apps can provide these features, eliminating the need for Chrome apps. While the above blog post stated that existing Chrome apps would continue to be supported in the future, Google has since reversed that decision, deciding to end support for Chrome apps in June 2022.

Why is Chrome shutting down?

First: Try these common Chrome crash fixes. Your computer may be out of memory and unable to load the site while your apps, extensions, and programs are running. Free up memory: Close all tabs except the one displaying the error message. Close other running applications or programs.

Why does SEO matter in 2022?

Investing in your brand’s search engine optimization (SEO) in 2022 is more than a necessity—it’s a priority. SEO increases your chances of being on the first page of search engine results and optimizes your website’s visibility.

Will SEO still matter in 2022? The fact that SEO is still working great even in 2022 as a method of delivering better commercial results for business websites and their owners, coupled with the need to constantly research what works, makes it still relevant as a digital marketing method, but even more so. than valuable service and satisfaction…

How has SEO changed in 2022?

Google has announced that it will stop adding page experience ranking signals to desktop sites by February 2022. Google describes the update as follows: “Page experience is a set of signals that measure how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page. beyond its pure informational value.â

What is SEO and how it works in 2022?

SEO works by optimizing a website’s content, doing keyword research and earning inbound links to increase the ranking of that content and the visibility of the website.

How has SEO changed in recent years?

Due to changes in Google’s algorithm, websites using black hat SEO tactics dropped in rankings, visibility and traffic. Google now prioritizes and rewards sites that use natural and correct keyword placement in their content, and continues to penalize those that use any black hat SEO tactics.

Is SEO still a thing in 2022?

SEO is not dead in 2022. SEO is still a very powerful digital marketing strategy. SEO continues to change as Google updates its algorithm, but that’s to be expected. If you are considering SEO for your website, now is a good time to start.

What is the future of SEO in 2022?

Expect SEO rankings to be more competitive by 2022, providing quality content that is useful to internet users. Content that only tries to capture its audience by linking to unnecessary solicitations is not effective at this point.

How long will SEO last?

Most professionals expect to see results in as little as 2 months, but SEO can take up to 12 months to work. While every company’s SEO strategy is different, most companies can expect to see significant results in 6-12 months.

Is SEO still relevant in 2022? If you’re asking if SEO is still relevant in 2022, our answer is that it is, and for good reasons.

Will SEO exist in 5 years?

SEO is not going away in the next five years as social media and search engines will more than likely merge. Facebook is already doing this: they average over 1.5 billion searches every day. Twitter has done the same; they joined in partnership with Google.

Will SEO be replaced by AI?

AI will completely change SEO as we know it. From optimization to link building, it significantly affects all aspects of SEO. As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes more sophisticated, search engine optimization must adapt.

Is SEO worth it in 2022?

Yes, SEO is worth it – in 2022, in the future, in the past and always. As long as websites and search engines exist, SEO is necessary. SEO in 10 years will likely be very different from SEO today, but you always need to make sure your website is sending the right signals to search engines to be found.

Is SEO going to end?

No. SEO is not dead in 2022. SEO is still a very powerful digital marketing strategy. SEO continues to change as Google updates its algorithm, but that’s to be expected.

Does SEO have a future?

SEO will grow rapidly in the future. Be sure to follow SEO best practices such as creating useful content, having a faster website, and following Google’s guidelines to rank better.

Will SEO exist in 10 years?

Speculations abound, but they don’t always provide a reliable forecast of what’s to come. But one thing is certain: SEO will be around for a long time. As long as search engines exist and Internet users use keywords and phrases to find what they are looking for, search engines will continue to operate.

Will SEO be replaced by AI?

AI will completely change SEO as we know it. From optimization to link building, it significantly affects all aspects of SEO. As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes more sophisticated, search engine optimization must adapt.

Does SEO have a future?

SEO will grow rapidly in the future. Be sure to follow SEO best practices such as creating useful content, having a faster website, and following Google’s guidelines to rank better.

Is SEO a long term investment?

SEO is a long-term strategy by nature. SEO requires constant investment. The results materialize over time as a series of improvements. Having a website full of content or products to sell won’t magically translate to organic traffic.

Does SEO have a future?

SEO will grow rapidly in the future. Be sure to follow SEO best practices such as creating useful content, having a faster website, and following Google’s guidelines to rank better.

Is SEO worth it in 2022?

Yes, SEO is worth it – in 2022, in the future, in the past and always. As long as websites and search engines exist, SEO is necessary. SEO in 10 years will likely be very different from SEO today, but you always need to make sure your website is sending the right signals to search engines to be found.

Is SEO a good career for the future?

The simple answer is yes, SEO is a good career. SEO professionals can earn a lot of money, achieve a comfortable work-life balance, find a position in the industry that matches their natural skills, and challenge themselves creatively.