How the Google Cloud Market and Artificial Intelligence are Shaping Search Trends
Small businesses may be balking at what SEO means as they prepare budget plans for 2007. Gain knowledge as to what happenings in the cloud market and AI are most likely to shape which marketing strategies will be successful in the coming next year.
Technology is forging new views on search marketing. Finding a clear path means having a fluid approach in place, knowing where to start, and by doing at least one thing really well. To succeed in competitive search in 2017, it helps to understand how artificial intelligence and technology are forging a new approach to search. Having limited funds and limited time means that a clear focus is of the essence to search success!
This article is meant to help get the mindset you need for successful search campaigns in 2017. There is no “one thing” that offers a magic bullet to success. But one thing is clear – the need to focus on new business generation coming from organic search, sales leads, and/or e-commerce revenue gained from paid search marketing. Old paths to get there must update and see how artificial intelligence and algorithms are vastly changing the world of search.
To have a clear grasp of how search is changing and how the role of artificial intelligence is impacting billions of businesses, take a look at the shift from our pre-smartphone use that relied on having to text, and our current devices. Today you can be anywhere with your mobile phone and use Google Keep to gain incredibly accurate voice dictation output. Before the world of ‘voice search’, it was more about predictive text.
If you are seeking the Holy Grail right now for ranking better in 2017, Google may be weighting content depth as long-form content has increased in popularity. People who use search want solutions and real answers, which does not often come with thin content. Gaining an edge over your toughest competitors means knowing what it takes to meet searchers’ needs. Every word of that content needs to have value and be optimized correctly.
The best of search marketing practices will continue to prove SEO’s huge potential to gain new clients for the foreseeable future. A sweeping revamp of digital marketing trends and strategies are altering what needs to be done to obtain the focus of user attention and favor of search engine giants. Remain adaptable to voice search and current on the best digital marketing ethics to be a recognized leader in your industry. We can help you stay ahead of the innovative curve. The White House also acknowledges how important Artificial Intelligence is to search trends.
SEOs Influencing Factors
Allotment of a marketing budget as a percentage of revenue must increase if a business hopes to accelerate business’ growth. From monetizing budget, optimizing a site better, to leveraging technology to determine next steps, being in the game is key. Creating fresh content for your business website needs to include a cohesive perspective of how your site visitors consume your content and their purchasing preferences. Prospective buyers don’t just want someone to listen to their words; they are more likely to complete a purchase from people who make them feel like their voice was heard.
That isn’t done overnight.
Having a great product and customer service alone doesn’t cut it. Often it is the business with the greatest investment in sales and marketing their site’s content wisely, including video content. According to Captoria:
- 46% of companies spend less than 9% of overall revenue.
- 24% of companies spend 9 to 13% of overall revenue.
- 30% of companies spend greater than 13% of overall revenue.
More than ever, marketers are feeling the need to be more strategic in just how that spend is executed. Therefore, understanding updates in how GoogleBot determines ranking changes becomes increasingly important.
10 Key Factors Behind the Shift in Search
1. Prominence of the Mobile-First World
Whether businesses were ready or not to adjust to mobile marketing, the perspective and preferences of users certainly has. Going forward Augmented Reality, and Virtual Reality are progressively obtainable to billions of buyers and searchers using mobile devices. This enormous adoption of smartphone devices means that both earned and paid search must conform to how potential consumers want to engage new businesses and make a purchase.
The pressure to have a fast loading site for mobile users who want in-the-moment answers will continue. For an example of how fast online search is changing consider the medical search movement. As insurance costs escalated, more individuals are relying on the web for basic health-related answers versus running into their doctor’s office as often.
In October Google talked more about its major change in its strategy in the smartphone market, as the search giant unveiled a ‘family of products’ — Pixel, Daydream, Home, and WiFi. This signals a move to into a new bucket of products which have both ‘hardware and software made by Google’.
We know that Pop-Up Ad Formats will be penalized in 2017. Google announced its plan to lower rankings of sites that have annoying pop-ups on smartphones by 2017. Digital publishers heavily engaging on these ads formats to keep their site traffic up, are forced to change by next year if they want to remain in good standing with the search giant.
The true lesson here is that marketers should embrace change by expanding their thinking into new ways to engage users across multiple channels and devices. Silo marketing efforts relying on the device of first-touch can refocus and find untapped potential in mobile. Where web traffic on retail sites is relatively equal between mobile and desktop users, mobile conversion rates are improving when multi-platform users become the focus.
2. Voice Search
More individuals are questioning if marketing is now more of a science than art given new highly sophisticated cognitive learning technologies that assume many tasks and are even doing them better than a human could. Voice search is at the forefront of AI. Voice search and speech recognition used by digital assistants may free up marketers to divert their time to tackling overarching responsibilities, such as finding ways to create the right voice and vision to make an emotional connection with consumers.
By laying the underpinnings for vastly more sophisticated one-to-one marketing, AI could even create a need for businesses to engage analytics, content and other areas that offer the chance to gain a competitive edge through customer-centric marketing.
Venture Beats says “our verbal linguistics often don’t match up with our written word. We’ve gotten used to typing major keywords into Google, but voice search works differently. It works by phrases.”
Today’s use of natural language in operative voice search is conversational. Voice search is increasing adapting to human speech recognition so that we can talk to digital assistants in a way resonates with how we talk in any everyday manner to each other. “Siri, tell me where the nearest gas station is” has much more of a conversational sense than just typing “fuel” into a search bar. And the result is not stagnant. Rather, it switches up how websites and businesses will intermingle with clients and alters best practices for search engine optimization.
3. Changes in Semantic Data Modeling
Web pages that previously centered around one particular keyword or keyword phrase have needed to change to being topic focused instead. When and where it’s worthwhile to continue to implement SEO strategies around the use of long tail keywords is in question. Each business site must listen to understand what long-tail keywords are, what they are compared to, and how their strategic implementation needs to evolve to help you create a strong affinity for your target audience.
Semantic data modeling will influence search for a long time to come – however the form that takes is evolving and will continue to reshape and influence SEO. Using advancing semantic technologies, businesses can understand and leverage their big data in new ways to automate knowledge discovery and gain clout online. The search giant states that “our work spans the range of traditional Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks, with general-purpose syntax and semantic algorithms underpinning more specialized systems.
”Regardless of the technological advances that occur, there will at a very minimum continue to be a need for people who are able to understand business needs for data and can model and define that data accordingly, even if it’s done solely at the conceptual or semantic level. Data and semantic modeling require specific skill sets, and not everyone is able to deal with the level of abstraction required for modeling,” states Pete Stiglich of Clarity Solution Group**.
Business success depends much on your online reputation and it can be improved and then preserved through the creation of content that fits new semantic search criteria. That means that future blog posts, news articles written by or about you, video content, apps, etc., should be planned in such a way that you don’t count on rank highly on Google just because of keywords, but because of its real value added impact and relevance to searches involving your brand.
The acceleration of improvements in search is much attributed to the role of artificial intelligence, powered by fast-paced machine learning algorithm updates. Rankbrain is Google’s primary algorithm in Google’s search technology that is reshaping the approach webmasters engage to win more visibility in search engine result pages (SERPs). By laying the underpinnings for vastly more sophisticated one-to-one marketing, AI could even create a need for businesses to engage analytics, content, and other areas that offer the chance to gain a competitive edge through customer-centric marketing.
When it comes to effectively optimize your content for RankBrain, how certain terms are used when covering everything from product information, images, video content, facts and stats that support your premise, – all matter.
It is fascinating how artificial intelligence connects search queries to user intent. RankBrain essentially evaluates a query by a query interpretation model that’s tough to optimize for. It’s going to evaluate the words in that query and the intent behind it. It’s potentially considering factors like location or personalization when interpreting these queries. Ranking signals are then applied to the results deemed appropriate to that specific query.
5. Changes in Use of Structured Data
Google recently added sweeping changes to its structured data documentation for the article data type. How they are added to an AMP page is now different than a standard HTML page. Correct structured data implementation is key to visibility in new features of the Google Knowledge Graph and rich snippets. Even when a site has gained rich snippets, John Mueller of Google indicates that that doesn’t mean all Google quality algorithms think your site is quality. There are over 200 factors that go into being attributed to a site of high quality.
New carousel searches are showing up in higher numbers. Google explains that “Host-specific lists display cards from a single site within a specific category. This markup uses a combination of ItemList markup and individual data type markup to enable a carousel of lists to appear in Search”. Google is improving by leaps and bounds just how its comprehension of Structured Data Islands that are embedded in Web Pages leverage markup from the Schema.org vocabulary.
Google has only so much space in search results to display rich snippets. Their algorithms must decide in a fraction of a second which limited set of websites and pages they award this visibility to. The result is that a competitive site may be seen as having the more relevant answer to the search query and thus wins the rich card snippets. This means that your site somebody else who previously had them now loses them.
6. Faster, Better, Richer DevOps
For businesses relying on apps to discover new customers wherever they are, it takes real skill to keep up with the comprehensive set of development and testing tools that empower your business to deliver at cloud speed. Cloud development is already here while gaining a burgeoning presence in the future. The opportunities to use an app more strategically in AdWords marketing awards websites that have accelerated mobile pages (AMP) in place.
Technology is typically about adding convenience and improving people’s quality of life. Automating routine SEO and development tasks is just practical sense. Automation is also a core component of DevOps. The current evolution for automation is for machine learning and artificial intelligence to enable tasks to be automated because time simply makes them impractical to do.
7. The Power of Social Media Integration
Businesses in general find that they can no longer afford to pass on social media engagement, yet they must revamp their approach to make sense of it. A solid social networks footprint will be even more important in your overall approach to search marketing in 2017. The enormity of change in how this drives traffic to a site is staggering and is nothing less than extraordinary. How to see revenue in return for marketing dollar spends, marketers must adapt their approach. The future of search marketing involves a focus on quality messages and responses to users across all your communication channels.
“99% of Social Media Posts receive near zero engagement fail to create a stir. Even sponsored campaigns fall flat. Yet, few posts go viral overnight and the person and the brand become celebrities overnight, without spending a dime on promotions. Getting a fair share of returns on investments in Social Media marketing efforts continue to be a challenge for enterprises and small and medium businesses worldwide,” says Subhendu Pattnaik, Director Marketing, Gallop Solutions.
Given the integration of the Twitter platform and Google, it is logical that Google opts to show tweets from a verified Twitter user (especially a celebrity or trusted source) as an option of information for searchers. October 1, 2016 News from Marty Baes on TechTime, stated that “Google is planning to take over Twitter to further boost its YouTube platform”.
The popularity of video consumption growth lends to increased use of Google’s YouTube marketing channel. It can quench viewers thirst for much-updated content and marketers need for very ad-friendly platforms. Its lack of short form is easily found on Twitter, which conveniently generates a lot of updated content but tussles with monetizing spent marketing dollars.
This new search will also probably place more emphasis than ever on high-traffic sites like LinkedIn, WordPress, and social media outlets – meaning that you should always keep your profiles on these services fully updated, professional, and using the latest features.
New Cloud Machine Learning Groups are emerging, which in itself proves how AI is not only reshaping the technology that Google uses, but also changing how the business must organize and run digital operations. This rapid re-orientation is found in Facebook and Twitter, who have also appointed internal groups akin to Google Brain, the team responsible for permeating the search giant’s own tech with AI.
8. Spammy Backlink Detection
A site’s backlink profile is more quickly and correctly assessed by recent algorithm changes. How backlinks are accrued plays into search rankings. Inbound links from aged domains are more powerful than links obtained from the newer sites that have yet to be tried, tested and become trusted. The number of referring domains remains a crucial factor in Google algorithms. Links that are separated from class-c IP addresses indicates when a broader breadth of domains is linking to your business.
White hat SEOs are excited to see these AI changes roll out for more applications such as backlink analysis and better spam detection. Additionally, linking web pages can bolster search engine rankings, even when from the same external domain as well as from your own internal pages. The anchor text you choose in your linking profile matters more than it did before and should move more in the direction of how people converse.
8. Google is Getting Fussier About Sites Techincal SEO
9. Expansion of Domain Options
The influence of a domain extension has yet to be determined. We do know that Google is VERY savvy and your domain history decides whether you are “good” or “bad” as far as trust goes. Quality content is more important. Google stands by the site with good content and repute. Matt Cutts, a Google engineer claims that in Google algorithm domain age is an insignificant factor. While no search engine has confirmed that they go by the length of a domain registration as a factor in scoring, using a head search term when establishing a new domain or subdomain is still important.
When it comes to the “I, the We and It” domains, significant change is happening to the ‘it domain’. “The domain of technology stretches further ahead, we either connect become a different creature, connecting with information and working/living in a new way, or we don’t. As we see more Artificial Intelligence truly wake up we will see new potential and new challenges,” says The Coaching Room.
NLP investigation at Google pays attention to algorithms that apply at scale, across languages, and across domains. This influences user experience in Google search, mobile, apps, paid ads, Google Translate and more.
Concerning domains, Matt Cutts has been quoted multiplied times for saying, “Small upcoming Google algo change will reduce low-quality exact match domains in search results.”
10. Rise in User Conceptual Search and Identities
Previously, marketers focused on audience targeting with paid search ads based solely on the keywords that matched up with landing pages. SEO has moved to a stronger focus on what users want and their identities. With more data and tools available to better identify and target specific audiences, marketers should take advantage of what is available now and plan ahead in anticipation of increasing changes.
The most effective way to do this is to restructure SEO campaigns not only around long-tail keywords, but around user conceptual search and the different stages of the consumer journey that audiences exist in. At every stage in the consumer journey, tailor your copy, landing page experiences, and strategies to be about the different behaviors of each audience – rather than just keywords. This is the foundation to an improved understanding of your audiences and will prepare your marketing strategy for additional developments in audience targeting.
Wikipedia explains how AI uses Concept Search: “A concept search (or conceptual search) is an automated information retrieval method that is used to search electronically stored unstructured text (for example, digital archives, email, scientific literature, etc.) for information that is conceptually similar to the information provided in a search query. In other words, the ideas expressed in the data information retrieved in response to a concept search query are relevant to the ideas contained in the text of the query.
A range of systems based on Artificial Intelligence and NLP now apply to semantic processing, and most of them depend on the use of auxiliary structures such as controlled vocabularies and ontologies.
What this Means to The Future of Search Marketing
Users love being engaged with the latest devices and forms of obtaining answers which propel technology advancements to the point that changes are coming at a dizzying clip for SEOs. The way marketers and SEO’ers manage search engine optimization (SEO) is evolving faster than we have ever experienced. New Top Stories carousels are showing up more often and new features continually emerge within Knowlege graphs and rich cards.
Whether or not individuals and businesses are familiar the term the “Machine Learning Age”, they are much reshaped by it. It is “a period that will prove as transformative for businesses and individuals as the Internet has been over the last 20 years. When it comes to search the buzzwords that make marketers’ spines shiver are “semantic search” and “Rankbrain”, says David Amberland****.
This means that search marketers must rapidly update their organic SEO strategies and integration of PPC advertising while testing user engagement and keeping a scalable, on-demand infrastructure to comply with needs for a competitive edge. Google is also switching up the way search results visually appear, especially search results for famous people or national news. The newer formats may be found more often in the AMP News Carousel, knowledge graphs, and later versions of automatically animated GIFs in your Google image search results.
An ability to understand the drastic conceptual change that has occurred in search because of these influencing factors is vital to business revenue. SEO and SEM were much simpler in the past, relying on fresh website content, less complex link-building strategies, on-page optimization, and easier wins in AdWords campaigns. That is not to say that it was easy but that it was “easier”. Now a more carefully crafted marketing plan will avoid attributing budgets, time, and staff priorities to old and less effective methods of search marketing.
Artificial intelligence plays a role in search that reduces the mastery of black hat SEO techniques that previously successfully gamed the system – at least till caught. Now, new devices and user preferences have transformed our multi-dimensional universe of search ranking signals. While search and the need for SEO still exist, it demands a revamped approach to using search for success in online marketing.
Why the Human Touch Remains Central to Search
Despite such massive technology development and robots responding to voice generated search queries, marketers who focus on natural language and the human element in the search process, are rewarding for focusing on the user experience. Only careful selections of automation tasks that utilize the best of technology avoid a canned user experience. While digital tools and advanced technologies will never fully replace the personal side of customer relationship building, they are necessary for identifying the right messages and what it takes to have an adeptness to stay on top of search trends going forward.
All of this requires a solid Google Analytics setup to help scrutinize the impact of a business’s content and brand messaging for on-going relationship building with current clients and future potential buyers. Business branding, digital marketing, and search engine optimization techniques must adapt to allow each of the above search influencers to work and enhance overall efforts. Know what tone and voice to use that adds clarity to your business identity and brand reach.
Businesses now depend on a complex integration of online and offline marketing efforts to create efficiencies in marketing scale while maintaining site quality and new content to consistently grow customer trust and loyalty.
” Siri, Cortana, Alexa, and all of their friends are setting the stage for search that’s completely different from what we’re used to. Understanding how those changes are going to affect the way that we search is key to finding success on the web of the future.” Venture Beat
”The need for digital marketers to quickly grab their audiences’ attention through social media channels, viral marketing, and organic ads in 2017 will take growth hacking to an even bigger level.” – shoutmeloud.com***
Call for a detailed approach to marketing that incorporates your unique set of influencing factors.
If you follow even some of the insights of changes in search from the things jotted above, then the benefits will be tremendously satisfying and your site rankings should definitely improve in 2017. Never go for temporary SEO link schemes or untested search marketing theories. Whether 2017 turns out to be a boom a bust year form your business, having clear goals, a reasonable e budget, and a tactical plan to achieve search marketing success can make it be a banner year!
Digital marketers and cloud providers find they need to adjust to Google upgraded search related requires and search news on a daily basis. To secure success in search 2007, stay current with newsletters about search trends for a cloud business.
To enlist help to write the structured data markup that powers these features, call 651-206-2410 and request a free consultation with Jeannie Hill for a Full-Site Schema Opportunities Audit