The way people search for information online is changing. The links displayed on search results now focus beyond mere keyword matching which in many cases, may or may not be according to the user’s original intent. This is in line with search engines’ goal of providing users with links to websites that provides the answers to what they were originally searching for.
To do this, search engine algorithms need to undergo major revamps like what Google did when it rolled out Hummingbird on September 26, 2013 and a rash of updates afterwards. Aside from making it harder for spammers and black hat SEO practitioners to fake out and manipulate first page results, algorithm changes focused on integrating more intuitive semantic filters and technologies in an attempt to make search engines understand natural language much more accurately.
The results are search engines that can understand the intent behind the words users typed in when they make a query – to provide real answers and not just mere word matches. With such changes to search engines, digital marketers need to rise up to the challenge and refocus their efforts towards understanding the what, why and how of semantic search optimization.
The infographic (click to zoom):