Home Articles Google Hummingbird

hummingbird on a branch When it comes to doing just about anything online, there is Google - then everyone else. Whatever your marketing goals may be, staying relevant on the Internet means being able to speak the search giant’s language and having the ability to translate your business in the same way. Failing to keep up with Google’s ever evolving algorithm means you could lose out of a serious chunk of business, while your competition runs away with the rankings.

Many companies choose to keep tabs on Google’s speech patterns the old fashioned way - with endless research, tons of translation and plenty of late nights. This is a commendable direction, but not the only option. There is an easier way. At SLS Consulting, Inc. we put the time in so you don’t have to. Our operation is dedicated to monitoring Google updates and adapting our strategy to fit their latest linguistics. This is known as search engine optimization (SEO) and it is the backbone of every campaign we undertake.

To discover more about our process and how we could help boost your marketing goals, give us a call at (323) 254-1510.

What Is Google Hummingbird?

Up until recently, Google was making small but steady improvements to their longstanding algorithm that had been in place since roughly 2001. Every significant alteration, from the Caffeine update in 2010 to the most recent Pigeon announcement this past summer, has been to Google’s initial coding. Hummingbird on the other hand is more than a slight tweak in spam recognition or subtle shift with indexing - it is an entirely new engine. Using some original parts and pieces, yes - but the Google we know and love has evolved- and in a big way.

So What Exactly Does Google Hummingbird Do?

According to Google they named this update to recognize the engine’s ability to be both "precise and fast". Which is wonderful and what we all expect Google to do - even when it does not. But when it comes right down to it, what makes this update so radically different from the rest? After all, Google still behaves the same doesn’t it? It hasn’t begun asking me questions in the morning or wondering how my day went - so what makes Hummingbird so special?

It literally comes down to how you phrase that question. Or to be more specific, lets look again at the title of this paragraph:

So What Exactly Does Google Hummingbird Do?

It sounds like how you would expect someone to ask that question, right? If you and I were having an informal conversation, one of us may phrase the sentence just like that; using words such as "so" and "exactly" doesn’t necessarily make the question any clearer - it simply sounds more human.

And that is precisely what Hummingbird is designed to take into account: human speech patterns. Instead of focusing on one or two keywords within the sentence, it now considers context - which if you take a moment to consider that fact, it is quite astounding. Google now looks at how you’re asking the question, not just what you’re asking. By using semantic clues Google is attempting to connect the conversation consumers are having in their head - with the explanation you’re providing about your product.

So What Does This Mean For My Marketing?

In the long run, quite a bit. As mentioned before, with today’s online landscape, it is all staying ahead of the Google curve. Which means, while your site might have maintained its overall ranking and walked away from Hummingbird relatively unscathed - at some point you’ll be faced with Google’s new conversation-happy attitude. In short, unless your site copy is written with a human in mind - not a search pattern - Google will progressively lose interest in what you have to say.

But, there is help available. At SLS Consulting, Inc. we have already begun to implement new tactics to keep up with Hummingbird across our entire client base. We believe by providing a genuine answer to Google’s very human question, we are responding to the market shift in ways most company’s have yet to explore.

For more information about our approach and how we can serve your marketing needs, contact our office at (323) 254-1510.