Advanced SEO Search Factors, RankBrain and the future of search

It seems the question on everyone’s mind these days is what’s the future of SEO and how does Google’s announcement of RankBrain change the game? So if you’re just hearing about this for the first time, I’ll catch you up.

A while ago, Google updated a portion of their algorithm, dubbing it RankBrain. Simplistically, it’s a machine-learning artificial intelligence system. It provides a modern approach to how Google understands search queries and searcher intent.

RankBrain’s primary purpose is to evaluate queries and then identify the best content. Google wants to return results that are incredibly relevant, even if in some situations, the content doesn’t contain any of the words from the original search query.

It’s all about evaluating the intent of the search, and finding content that meets this goal. The major idea behind RankBrain is that we can get away from specific keyword matching and move to mapping content to concepts.

In the past, a query for laptop may not have listed content referencing its plural, laptops. Let’s think about this another way. Say we’ve got a blog article that lists the best hamburgers in Santa Barbara. So the old method of SEO would look to see what keywords were most frequently used.

Does a user search for best burgers in Santa Barbara, or maybe where’s the best hamburger in Santa Barbara. We’d then fiddle with our content to make sure we use burger versus hamburger, and included any necessary modifiers, such as where or what, and so on.

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