Google Inc is celebrating its 15th birthday with a brand new search engine algorithm code-named “Hummingbird.” The company explained that the new search algorithm has been designed to respond more efficiently to voice commands on mobile devices, as well as longer, more complex search phrases. Essentially, the purpose of the overhaul is to match higher demand for voice compatibility as well as complicated, long-tail searches via Google. As the dominant online search engine, Google expects to continue out-ranking its competitors such as Bing, Yahoo! and Ask.com.
Hummingbird has been gradually introduced to the live Google search engine over the course of several weeks in order to ascertain its efficiency and usability – as it turns out, users didn’t even notice. Unfortunately for tech geeks, the company is keeping the details of its latest project fairly secretive, so far only outlining a few ways in which the overhaul with benefit Google online browsers. This is the first major search-engine-related overhaul that Google has implemented since 3 years ago, when its “caffeine” project was launched. Possibly to avoid a flood of copycat algorithms on other sites, Google founders Sergei Brin and Larry Page made a low-profile press release from their garage in Silicon Valley.
The Hummingbird algorithm will reportedly not take the place of the “PageRank” algorithm already in place; it will actually incorporate the latter into the new coding. If you are worried about having to re-learn your SEO standards, don’t panic quite yet; right now the Google executives feel there is no need to reshuffle the SEO rules. What Hummingbird does affect is the ability of the search engine to actually find pages, people and media through a search query. Redesigning the algorithm does mean that up to 90 percent of search queries will be affected, hopefully for the better.
Google Inc has a lot to celebrate on its 15th birthday, especially since the release of Hummingbird comes at the peak of Google search engine glory. It has been estimated that 2 out of every 3 search engine queries in the United States are handled by Google, with even higher numbers in Europe, meaning that nearly 70 percent of online searches will be routed differently than they were just 2 months ago. It’s uncertain right now how the new program is going to affect pages that are highly ranked on Google, as well as those who are virtually invisible at the moment. Experts have suggested that this could lead to a rise in Google Ad sales if top websites feel they are receiving fewer daily hits.
As far as Google is concerned, the update is merely about making the stretch to mobile devices that include smart phones, headsets and possibly even smart watches in the near future. Research by the company has found that audio requests into the Google search engine do not perfectly mimic traditionally typed search engine queries. Hummingbird will attempt to appease vocal searchers while still maintaining the quality of typed online searches.
Google Inc with officially celebrate its 15th birthday this Friday, but Hummingbird is already affecting our Google queries. A Google executive at the press conference in Silicon Valley demonstrated the new algorithm on her smart phone, asking it out loud for pictures of the Eiffel Tower. The pictures appeared on the phone, at which point the woman asked how tall the Tower was. The phone gave her the answer out loud. The woman asked again for pictures of its construction, and they were displayed on the screen.
by Mandy Gardner