Google has been rolling up search engine optimization updates to its algorithm in quick time for the past decade. Due to many people abusing the algorithm Google has been tough on black hat techniques and those who do not follow the guidelines. The latest Google search update on its algorithm is known as BERT. The latest Google update to SEO algorithm has been declared as “one of the biggest leaps forward in the history of search.” by Google itself. This algorithm will directly affect any SEO Writers, SEO specialist or Content Creators on the internet.
We bring you top 3 most important things to be aware of about the BERT update that you should immediately implement in your SEO and Content creation.
NO 1: WHAT DOES BERT STAND FOR?
You might have experienced in the past that Google core update in search engine algorithm are given cute names like Google Panda update, Google Penguin update, Google hummingbird update and many more. The name BERT when it came out we automatically thought about Sesame Street character named BERT but as Google search update does not relate to that in fact the actual terminology of BERT is “Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers”, isn’t that a tongue twister. On a lighter note, many of us would actually be thinking of relating it to the BERT we all know and love. In normal human language that we the masses can understand BERT will help Google Searching Algorithms to understand the sentences we make for searching better. It will make the algorithms, bots, spiders and machines to understand the natural language processing which is also known as NLP. It will make Google understand different languages and the phrases that humans make naturally while talking and not like a robot. Google search update will better understand the nuances and search queries context that users name which is very beneficial for content creators and SEO professionals. Another question one might have in a geeky way is what type of model is BERT? Well, the answer to that is that BERT MODEL is a language model. One thing that might surprise you is that BERT is not new for Google Fanatics, this concept is made by Google AI team and they had published a research paper in 2018 named BERT.
NO 2: WHERE HAS GOOGLE SEARCH UPDATE BERT BEEN DEPLOYED?
At the time of BERT release it was only catering US ENGLISH and was only deployed for Google.com results that were organic in nature. Bert has been successfully been deployed for more than 70 languages as of December, 2019. Bert is now applicable for all organic search results in English (UK), English (US), English, Urdu, Hindi, Afrikaans, Albanian, Amharic, Arabic, Armenian, Azeri, Basque, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Simplified & Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Farsi, Finnish, French, Galician, Georgian, German, Greek, Gujarati, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Javanese, Kannada, Kazakh, Khmer, Korean, Kurdish, Kyrgyz, Lao, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian Malay (Brunei Darussalam & Malaysia), Malayalam, Maltese, Marathi, Mongolian, Nepali, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Sinhalese, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish Swahili, Swedish, Tagalog, Tajik, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uzbek & Vietnamese languages.
The featured snippet that comes when you do an organic search before the result is the most affected as BERT has been deployed on it for more than 25 languages that Google uses to show featured snippets. The first question that comes to everyone who learns about BERT is that will their rankings be affected and the short answer is that NO it will not. If you are seeing a decline in your traffic or website rankings than latest Google update or Google core update is responsible for it. As according to Google itself BERT will be affecting only 10% of the total organic searches being done. The main question is why should you be concerned about BERT? The answer is that BERT affects trailing keyword queries, longer sentences, and more conversational queries done by the user. You need to access that what longer keywords or phrases are being used to search for your website or content.
NO 3: WHAT TO DO IN SEO FOR BERT GOOGLE SEARCH UPDATE
The million dollar question in everyone’s mind is what to do after the BERT update to not get affected by it and lose your traffic or ranking. The answer is plain, straightforward and simple i.e. You have to do absolutely nothing. Strange! You might think that you need to change your SEO or Content creation but as per Google you have to do whatever you were doing before the BERT update came. As you might know that SEO i.e search engine optimization is the way or process of making your website, blog, content better for humans and search engines to read and understand better. You need to optimize the website, blog or content for the user and not specially make it artificially readable for bots or search engines. One must remember that after GOOGLE PANDA update it was clear that Google is focusing on enriched, well written and credible content. You need to focus on writing SEO friendly and user friendly content that is well written, grammatically correct and easy to understand. Google is focusing more on the intention of organic searches rather than focusing on keyword based searches.
An example of this can be if you search for “How many calories does a cup of coffee has?” you will get an exact answer from Google that could be let’s say 100Kcal but before Bert it would have looked for keywords and shown you cafes or places where you can get coffee as those businesses would have used keywords like a cup of coffee in their content. The intent of the organic query was a simple answer and Google gave that answer accurately. This is the biggest difference that users will feel and see after the BERT update.
Google if focusing on natural understanding language i.e. how it’s spoken normally and bring results by understanding the intent of the query. One must not abandon all their SEO strategies of marketing plans just because of BERT. This is a simultaneous work that they need to do and focus on producing high value content for readers. Most important thing you need to keep in mind is that whatever content you create, strategy you adopt keep the users in mind.
ALI NAZAR RATHORE is an entrepreneur with many successful projects under his belt like TechWrath, Ali Rathore Associates, BodyMag Pakistan, HerLifeStyle Magazine & many more. He is passionate about promoting people and appreciating them for their work. His highness also likes to talk about himself in a royal third person.