Google’s Hummingbird algorithm marks their largest search engine algorithm update in years. In fact, in our estimation, it is one of the most important in recent history since it changes the game completely. It makes sense that this change has come, and it provides us with important insight as to what Google thinks will be the future of search.

What is Semantic or Conversational Search?

Hummingbird represents Google’s focus on question-based, semantic, or conversational searches. Results will be now tailored to your information and profile (that Google handily has record of) including your networked sites, search history, Google+ social shares, trends, use of similar words or synonyms, and your  IP based location. One search could provide completely different results for each user.  In addition, more users are typing in questions to Google and are expecting better, streamlined, and accurate answers. With the recent changes and updates with tools like iPhone’s Siri, users are “talking” to their virtual search assistant. Again, in the form of questions.

Hummingbird affected 90% of searches and came with other changes including Google’s keyword encryption. This keyword encryption renders  much of the keyword research and Google Analytic data useless. This makes follow through Analysis much more difficult. Webmasters cannot easily identify which keywords brought them traffic from Google  This makes SEO work that much more difficult but still one of the best sources of traffic.

How do I adapt my SEO Strategy for Hummingbird Algorithm changes?

Here are some tips:

  1. Focus on longer phrases (long-tail) phrases rather than just specific single or short length keyword phrases.
  2. Change your website content and layout to focus on answering questions that your prospective customers may want answers to.  (Quick Hint: Take a look at how we formatted this post.)
  3. Answer as many questions in the famous “5 Ws” (Who, What, Where, When, and Why). Of course, your companies solution is “How” you can also answer these questions.

What are some examples of keywords or Page Titles for Google Hummingbird?

If you make longer, question types such as – “how to…?”, “where is the nearest…?”, “where can I get…?”, etc. then you can create Titles and keywords as follows:

“NJ SEO company Shows You How to Optimize your Site after Google Algorithm changes”

What changes to Google effect my website?

“6 Important website changes your Business must make”

“Who is the best Ad Agency in New Jersey?”

Although keyword data is not easily provided on a silver platter, it doesn’t mean that Google is not considering the words or content of your site as a part or signal for its algorithm. Although creating compelling focused content seems an impossible task, it is more important than ever the answer your customer’s questions.

Hummingbird is smarter and more complex than many of Google’s previous algorithms, now extracting more information on more people with longer phrases and questions looking for answers.

Continue making good compelling useful content that your prospects want to see, and you will succeed on Google!