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Inside Google's Rankbrain

By: Naren Arulrajah


Artificial Intelligence (AI) will significantly impact our lives; not in the Terminator Skynet way, but in a more realistic and immediate way, via online search thanks to Google’s AI machine learning system RankBrain. RankBrain, part of Google’s Hummingbird search algorithm, is a machine-learning AI system that’s used to help process search results.

Up until a few years ago, users would simply type in open-ended keywords such as “Botox” while conducting a search. Today they are inputting more complex queries such as “Cosmetic surgery practice near me that offers Botox on weekends?” To understand and deliver optimized results for these conversational type queries, Google switched its search algorithm to machine learning technology: RankBrain.

RankBrain’s algorithms will start processing search and ranking data more efficiently with the bigger goal of applying the learning to future tasks. Once it understands the proper context for a word, RankBrain permanently learns the context and will use it in the future.

RankBrain has been operational since October 2015, and it has already become the third most important ranking factor in search results, and its role is only going to get bigger.

We know that any changes Google makes to how it processes search data has a direct impact on ranking and visibility for brands in search engine result pages (SERPs). And as we learned when the IBM computer Watson won Jeopardy! in 2011, you can’t beat AI… and if you can’t beat something, the best strategy is to join it.

Here’s how to work with Rankbrain and get your site noticed.

Improve the User Experience

Any algorithm update introduced by Google basically focuses on improving user search experience. To do this, enhance site navigation, ensure your site is mobile-friendly, and check for any errors such as broken links or duplicate content and missing Meta description tags among others.

Provide High-Quality Links and High-Quality Content

Focus on creating quality content and ensuring that your backlinks are contextually relevant to your content. Links that fall outside the purview of your content should be axed.

Focus on Contextually Relevant Content

RankBrain’s goal is to identify and qualify complex conversational queries with the most relevant search results. Instead of focusing on a single keyword phrase, think of a series of content items that are contextually relevant to the keyword. Each query can have multiple steams of relevant content. For example, if you create a post on facial contouring, develop separate items covering chin or cheek enhancement and rhinoplasty, include a post on “ideal candidate,” “after-care,” and “what-to-expect.”

Use Natural Language

It is best to use natural conversational language when creating content. Remember RankBrain is essentially learning from humans. Voice search is becoming big, so there is a lot of human conversation coming into the picture. And RankBrain is smack in the middle of all that.

Naren Arulrajah is President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, a complete Internet marketing company that focuses on SEO, social media, marketing education, and the online reputations of Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons. With a team of 140+ full time marketers, www.ekwa.com helps doctors who know where they want to go get there by dominating their market and growing their business significantly year after year.If you have questions about marketing your practice online, call 855 598-3320 to speak one-on-one with Naren.