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Google’s using a machine learning technology called RankBrain to help deliver its search results.
What is Google RankBrain?
RankBrain is a component of Google’s core algorithm that uses machine learning to determine the most relevant results for search engine queries. Google used its basic algorithm to determine which results to show for a given query. it is believed that the query is now going through an interpretive model that can apply possible factors such as search engine location, customization, and words from the query. Google can offer more relevant results.
The machine learning aspect of RankBrain sets it apart from other updates. In order to “teach” the RankBrain algorithm to generate useful search results, Google first “feeds” the data from various sources. The algorithm then takes over this, calculates, and teaches itself over time to compare a large number of signals with a large number of results and to order search engine rankings based on these calculations.
What is Machine Learning?
One of the most profound applications of Artificial Intelligence, machine learning involves empowering the machine to analyze patterns and results so that it can teach itself to perform certain tasks more efficiently. The algorithm works harder with new data and search queries and becomes smarter in the process, eliminating the need for human intervention.
What is Neural Matching?
Neural matching is an AI-based system Google began using in 2018 primarily to understand how words are related to concepts. It’s like a super-synonym system. Synonyms are words that are closely related to other words.
Is RankBrain part of Hummingbird?
Hummingbird is the overall Google search algorithm, which is made up of many different parts responsible for certain tasks. RankBrain also operates under Hummingbird, being responsible for processing unique queries – it doesn’t handle all searches, as only a major algorithm would. RankBrain helps the Hummingbird algorithm provide more accurate results for the search terms it may not know.
How important is RankBrain?
Since RankBrain is used in every Google search, this is very important. RankBrain is the first attempt at machine learning and will pave the way for the future of research. By implementing some best practices now, you can ensure that your website is ready for the continuous improvements that machine learning will bring to search results over time. Google has previously claimed that this is the third most important ranking factor. While we’re not sure it’s still valid, what we do know is that RankBrain is still a big part of how Google delivers search results.
How RankBrain changed SEO?
Now that RankBrain aims to connect searchers with the most relevant outcomes possible, search intent has become a priority. This is why RankBrain only favors pages that truly meet its requirements: answering user questions, authorizing the transaction (if necessary), or providing full information on the subject stated in the request.
it is impossible to effectively optimize content without understanding the search intent and performing specific keyword searches for the intent.
Another thing that the Google RankBrain update has constantly changed in SEO is the shift in focus on optimizing content from keywords to topics. it’s no surprise to most SEOs and digital marketers that the concept of a keyword and a page is really dead which means that in the RankBrain era all you have to look for is completeness – there is no way to get high rankings by creating lots of pages to cover different keyword variations.
RankBrain Vs. Past Google’s Updates
- Panda. Rolled out in 2011, it was an adjustment to bring high-quality content to the users by promoting or demoting websites in search results, depending on the usefulness and relevance of content. Effect on SEO: sites with more helpful content were ranked higher.
- Penguin. Implemented in 2012, it was an adjustment for backlinks. It worked as a deterrent for black-hat SEO practices such as link farms, link pyramids, and similar illegal techniques. Effect on SEO: sites with high-quality backlinks rank higher.
- Hummingbird. Announced in 2013, this major update put even more emphasis on human interaction, context, and natural language. Effect on SEO: long-tail keywords now have more significance, as they help in determining the context of a search.
- Pigeon. Released in 2014, it improved the quality of local searches, tying in results to Google Maps and other services. Effect on SEO: small businesses are now more visible in search results. New rules and guidelines for local SEO are now in play.
How do I optimize for RankBrain?
1. Use natural language
The only recommendation on RankBrain optimization came from Gary Illyes, Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google, who said that:
"Optimizing for RankBrain is actually super easy, and it is something we've probably been saying for 15 years now, is — and the recommendation is — to write in natural language. Try to write content that sounds human. If you try to write like a machine then RankBrain will just get confused and probably just pushes you back. But if you have a content site, try to read out some of your articles or whatever you wrote, and ask people whether it sounds natural. If it sounds conversational, if it sounds like natural language that we would use in your day-to-day life, then sure, you are optimized for RankBrain. If it doesn't, then you are 'un-optimized. "
2. Find out search intent
So the first step towards optimizing for RankBrain is to make sure that it is easy for the algorithm to understand your content, Although this does not currently seem to impact ranking, it is possible it will in the future if Google introduces more AI into its algorithm.
3. Improve relevance and comprehensiveness
Create content that engages users and keeps them on your page. When your content speaks to the user, they can also respond (in the form of comments). Promote dialogue with your content.
4. Check your snippets to improve CTR
Since the CTR is one of the things that the RankBrain algorithm takes into account when estimating page relevance, it is very important to make sure that your snippets are well optimized as they will directly affect the CTR.
RankBrain was mentioned as part of Google’s general Hummingbird algorithm.
In 2015, Google stated that RankBrain was used to process 15% of queries the system had never encountered before. In 2016, Google applied RankBrain to all queries.