The impact of machine learning on search ranking

Article written by : Internet Marketing Showtime

The biggest change to the Google search algorithm in the recent past was the introduction of machine learning as a signal. However, until recently it was not known how much of an impact this change made to the overall rankings and results. Here are some observations by experts who studied rankings and other metrics before and after the introduction of machine learning:

Google will only introduce a technology like a machine learning if it improves the end user experience. An analysis of site’s traffic before and after the change revealed some startling differences. The analysis focused on the top 32 pages of a site based on organic traffic. Before the test, a third of the pages had below average time on site. After the introduction of machine learning, only two pages of the top 32 has below average time on site.

Another test showed that machine learning has an impact of what Google considers high quality content. For the test, the site changed the category page text from a boilerplate keyword based description to a handcrafted description for each category. The pages without any optimization dropped 11% while the pages with optimized text jumped as much as 80%. It is clear that Google can identify and reward text that has a positive impact on the user experience.

These are just two examples of the impact machine learning has on the search engine results. Not only does it reward better user experiences, but it also points users in the right direction more often.


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