Google Is Heading a New Direction

Late last year, Google celebrated its 20th anniversary. On this important milestone, Google announced that it aims to improve Google Search in the next 2 decades. They are closing a chapter, and start a new chapter.

Google homepage reflected on the laptop screen.

What does the future holds for Google?

If you haven’t heard about it, I published a post called The New Google Search Is Here!

What Google reiterated?

They shared that there would be old principles that would remain relevant:

  • The FOCUS on the user. The user should come first despite the shift. Whether they are looking for songs, they are downloading content, or merely exploring the web, they should always be the priority.
  • Information is given as fast as possible. The Page Rank algorithm of Google continues to value the speed of sharing information. Of course, the information should also be relevant and useful to the user.
  • Applying an algorithmic approach. Billions of searches are inputted on Google’s search bar every single day. 15% of these searches are new. So, it means Google is also learning from these searches entered by the user. One way to handle the enormous scale of queries and searches is through an algorithmic approach. Consider the searches of yesterday, and anticipating related searches in the future.
  • Test before adding new changes. Lastly, it is always important to test the changes. Google provided a set of rater guidelines for the public to read. In 2017 alone, Google was able to run over 200,000 tests that produced more than 2,400 changes in search patterns.

What does this mean for YOU?

Continue to:

These changes would also mean a shift of direction for Google Search:

  • Remembering the user’s journey.
    • Google is not only concerned with giving answers. They want to part of the user’s journey, and allow the users to “continue where they left off.”
    • This is evident in their services like Google Chrome. Now, people can restore their recently closed tab. Also, users have the option to restore their last session. Additionally, Google can provide related searches and recommend content basing from the search history.
  • Giving answers even if users don’t make a query.
    • Now, Google focuses on the “future.” It anticipates what the user might want. Google aims to help without needing to search.
    • How? Through Google Discover! This new venture intends to provide evergreen content. Basing from the user’s preferences, Google Discover will suggest content that the users might like.
  • Moving towards multimedia content.
    • Google is becoming more visual. Instead of focusing on texts, they are making it a point to add more visual capabilities.
    • They are making algorithmic changes to accommodate more videos and provide them with closed captions (CC). Newly released videos are given a general overview on several topics.
    • Also, image searches have changed. Google now gives better rankings to the content with captions. This is why you should always provide alt text to your images.
    • Lastly, Google Lens helps you to search what you see. It allows users to do a visual search based on objects detected by the camera. Google’s AI can recognize images, scan and translate texts.

The New Google Search Is Here!

With so many things happening at Google, it’s hard to keep up. These enormous or trivial changes may be happening right before our very eyes and yet we fail to notice it. From algorithm changes to the ways online marketing evolves, there are surely developments that are happening behind the scenes.

a screenshot of Google search

Clearly, Google tends to lean on lessening the actual search process. This would mean that search engines might be of less use. There would be more recommendations depending on the user’s preference. Now, I will explain to you these changes and how it affects SEO.

Google Discover

Google Discover started out as Google Feed. Back in 2016, it was introduced to the public. However, Google applied a major update in October 2018. Now, Google Discover’s goal is to recommend content basing from the user’s search history and behavior. So, all the suggestions will be personalized and will totally depend on the specific user’s choices.

These features were added to the newly updated Google Discover:

  • More image and video suggestions were added.
  • There are headers to indicate the results.
  • It now features more evergreen content.
  • Users can send their feedback if they want more (or less) of the recommendation given to them.
  • Google reiterates that the recommendations are personalized.

Google Discover is not something new. In fact, Facebook uses the same strategy. You don’t have to “like” a fan page to get updates. Related pages will automatically show up on your news feed.

It is all around to be honest, and it’s not just Facebook, social media platforms such as Twitter, YouTube and Instagram, are also doing the same. According to a report by CNET, 70% of the time spent on YouTube are because of a series of video recommendations.

What does this mean?

Obviously, the future is heading towards content recommendation and less of content searching. This totally alters the game of SEO. Will Google Discover surpass the 70% of YouTube? More importantly, will people rely on recommendations or will they continue to choose to search for what they want? Only time will tell.

Google Assistant

Google Assistant was first introduced in February 2017. The Android users would be familiar with this tool. As time passes, it has become more prominent. Google Assistant is now geared towards the user interaction. Thus, decreasing the dependence on search tools in terms of web browsing.

The Google Assistant is capable of doing the following:

  • Help the user search the web.
  • Schedule appointments, and events.
  • Display the user’s Google account information.
  • Change the device settings.

The major upgrade would probably be the ability to have two-way conversations. Now, interaction won’t be unilateral as the users will get real-time answers from Google Assistant. There is no need to look for the best possible answer because Google Assistant will do it for you.

What is in store for us?

  • In addition to Google Assistant, there is also a new development called Google Express. Users can now quickly add products to their shopping cart and purchase the said items through the help of Google Assistant.
  • There is also Google Duplex.  This upcoming tool will make scheduling appointments easier. Through Google Assistant, users can call different businesses and schedule an appointment.

In the future, if there are more users dependent on Google Assistant, there would be an obvious change on how we view web browsing. People won’t rely on Google search anymore. Thus, businesses should find ways to adapt to these changes in algorithms.


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