Over the course of social media’s rise to enormity, Google’s various algorithm updates have packed a wallop to say the least. Businesses of all persuasions from all over the world have each time been forced to take stock of the damage done or otherwise, in order to roll with the punches and summarily come back stronger than ever before.
Sadly, not all were able to do so and even in the case of the less significant Google updates, some were left in the dust and doomed to failure.
As such, it’s little wonder that Hummingbird has put the fear of God into millions across various business spectrums in all corners of the world. This is the biggest update Google has rolled out since the search engine giant first hit the web quite some time ago, so to say things have been shaken up a bit would be quite the understatement.
How has Hummingbird changed this for social media marketing? Well, before going into that it’s a good idea to understand what the latest update is all about in the first place.
Why They Did It
The simplest way to explain Google’s latest algorithm update is as a means by which to better cope with conversational search terms and phrases. For example, there’s a huge difference between “plumbing repairs” typed into Google and “Where can I find the cheapest plumber in Manchester?” – the latter is the direction Google is taking for the future.
Hummingbird is Google’s latest attempt to move away from the robotic search terms we’ve become used to in favor of generally more conversational queries.
How to Cope or Compensate
As this is only the start of things to come, one of the best tips right off the bat is to begin making the kinds of headlines that are more specific in nature than vague and open. Instead of trying to win points and readers with the standard keywords you know they’re entering, make the pages of your sites more specific to what it is you’re offering and you’ll enhance your chances of winning the traffic.
In addition, it’s also important to understand that now really is the time to understand how crucial it is to build your authority and respect in your chosen niche. This means making sure that the content you produce is consistent in its fresh, unique and generally compelling nature. If you can get your name out there by making regular appearance on forums, on message boards and via other people’s sites too, all the better.
An understanding of the Google Knowledge Graph will also stand you in good stead going forward – something dubbed “the future of search” by the powers that be and one you expect to play a huge role in your future successes or otherwise. You can see this in the form of a little box that pops up near the standard search results that Google lists, which is there to help those making the searches find exactly what it is that they want without the need to visit a dozen sites before they find one that delivers.
Keep Up the Good Work
Last but not least, what’s just as important as understanding the technical stuff right now is making sure that each and every positive habit already being practiced is in no way abandoned. Despite the massive changed Hummingbird brought along, it’s worth remembering that the vast majority of principle SEO guidelines for getting it right are the same now as they were a couple of years ago.
For example, you’ll still need to make sure you’re undertaking careful and strategic link building and keyword mining strategies – the operative word here being ‘careful’. Genuinely hard-fought and organic SEO practices have changed very little and can still form the bread and butter of your online marketing efforts – don’t interpret Hummingbird as a reason for abandoning what you already do well.
Rocky John Tayaban is a blogger and a search engine marketer. He’s currently the managing director of iSolutions Media, a company based in the Philippines that caters to a global client. Follow him on Twitter @SmartOnlinePros to receive the latest tips in search marketing.