A year or two ago things were easy-breezy for Google. Algorithms kept the Internet’s vast number of sites in check, delivering what was believed to be relevant content to the masses in a strategic order. However, were those search results really relevant to our needs, or was it just what met the most number of SEO criteria based on what we asked?
The explosive growth in uses for Social Media, clearly expresses the world’s preference for online networking, and now Google introduces us to “Search Plus Your World,” the new method of search which looks to our family, friends and followers first for information when we conduct a Google search.
Previously, optimal content for search meant rewriting the right combination of facts and words to meet a specific number of key terms, meta tags and descriptions; taking you higher and higher in the algorithmic maze that Google previously kept under lock and key.
While this method will return search results with exactly the words that I asked for, it can’t measure the context of the content to see if it accurately answers my question. In addition, the top results rarely come from sources that I know I can undoubtedly trust.
Who do I trust for information? I trust my mom, I trust my husband, I trust my best friend, I trust my accountant. See a pattern? When I search for a good restaurant, I’m not willing to gamble on the knowledge of JuicyGirl42 and her yahoo forum answer, nor do I want spam sites that list zero website or location information for the recommended place.
Efficient answers were hard to come by with search, and Google saw people migrating to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Yelp and so many other places for information. This forced a transformation in thinking towards what they call “Personal Search,” which scans the people in your network for anything they may have posted, commented on, or else wise shared regarding what you seek.
VIDEO: How to Use the New Personal Search Filter through Google
What does this mean for someone trying to put their message in front of an audience? Efficient, precise and entertaining content that people will read, but most importantly share … over-and-over again, that is how you get viewership to your content. Nothing earth shattering, but now it’s the only option.
It is not only about having the facts on any given topic, but using those facts to draw new, educated thoughts and opinions for someone searching to know more. Bear in mind, this also opens the field for who can be relevant. Hot topics generally get everyone talking, so you’ll have to be mentioned the most to come out on top and keyword-heavy lists of facts are just no longer going to make the cut.
Stephanie began writing in high school as a co-founder of the first edition of her school newspaper in 20 years. She graduated from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Journalism and minor in Political Science. While in school, she served as Editor-in-Chief of the school’s newspaper, and completed an internship at Fox News in Philadelphia. She moved to Austin after graduating to take a marketing position with a large financial institution. Eventually the world moved online to blogs and Social Networking, and her focus shifted.