Google Improves the Accuracy of Search Snippets

Google
Courtesy of Haywood Beasley (Flickr CC0)

Google wants to provide users with more contextual data matching for Search Snippets and additional information within search results to reduce the spread of misinformation. In addition, it has improved its algorithms that determine the snippets, which are direct response results shown in search queries.

The search engine’s designers say its systems are also improving at identifying when a featured snippet does not include appropriate context. In other words, the system can now verify factual statements and claims to ensure that the results are accurate.

Google has improved its algorithms that power its search snippets, which are the direct response results it shows in Search queries.

To make featured snippets more accurate and prevent false premises, Google search’s team is tweaking answers. However, the issue with snippets appearing to quote pages directly answering questions is that they can backfire in ways that regular query responses do not.

During a meeting with journalists, Google provided examples of these issues and how it works to solve them. For example, when a person searches for “how long does light take to get from the Sun to Earth,” Google once displayed a snippet that mentioned the distance from Pluto.

Google: Multiple Top Search Results

Google
Image by Simon (Pixabay CC0)

This fact-checking process is based on Google’s prior declarations of high-quality websites. However, it does not indicate that something is trustworthy. Instead, he says it simply looks at the top results to see if there are any commonalities.

Google’s prior declarations of trustworthiness are used to look for similarities across several pages, avoiding the inclusion of the wrong info.

The objective is to make snippet mistakes less frequent and increase user trust in search results, which is another indication of Google’s alterations. If they appear on breaking news stories, the search engine warns users about unreliable search results for almost a year.

Google will now expand those notices to instances where it believes there are no good results for a search, warning users before they scroll down the page that they will see the results. It does not prevent anyone from accessing data but helps maintain expectations about its accuracy.

The search engine enhanced the “About this page” function, which provides details about the website where a search result originated. Previously accessible on Search, the feature is now available in the Google iOS app in English for the first time. While browsing any web page on the app, users may swipe up to find more information and, theoretically, determine whether it is reliable. It will be available on Android and other languages in the coming months.

The more Google users know about the search results and the web pages they are linking to, the easier it will be to spot false information and make better decisions. The only way to ensure a site is accurate is to read the source material. Anything online is open to interpretation.

Always make certain that sources are reliable and up to date before citing them in hubs and social media feeds. Readers can also help to keep their website free of fake news by making it a point to check out the original pages whenever possible. The best way to avoid incorrect facts is to know how Google works and how it can benefit the website’s online presence.

While the internet is a fantastic place to learn about the world and research, it’s also filled with fake news, misinformation, and downright terrible information. Google Snippets are a way to show that information is credible and not just an attempt at search engine optimization. Instead, they are an opportunity for websites to get more organic traffic and boost conversions. Compelling Snippets have a specific goal: to provide the most helpful, accurate, and persuasive information possible.

Written by Janet Grace Ortigas
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware

Sources:

Social Media Today: Google Outlines New Algorithm Improvements to Improve the Accuracy of its Displayed Search Results; by Andrew Hutchinson
SEJ: Google’s Algorithms Can Understand When Sources Agree On Same Fact; by Matt G. Southern
The Verve: Google Search will stop telling you when Snoopy assassinated Abe Lincoln; By Adi Robertson

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Haywood Beasley’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of Simon’s Pixabay Page – Creative Commons License

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