FAQ - What does Google's RankBrain Check For?

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FAQ - What does Google's RankBrain Check For?

Posted by Myles Golden on Jul 14, 2017

What is RankBrain?

RankBrain is a machine-learning artificial intelligence system that helps process search results as part of Google’s ranking algorithm. It is one of many processes in Google’s system of determining what the most useful pages are, based on words or characters entered in the search bar. RankBrain was introduced in 2015, and has been involved in every Google search since June of 2016.

What does RankBrain do?

Google stays fairly aloof about the exact function of RankBrain. It has been confirmed that this machine learning mechanism does have an impact on SEO, or search engine optimization. However, the whats, whys, and hows of this system aren’t explicit. The mystery of how to achieve SEO must stay in place in order for Google’s ranking systems to be effective. If everyone knew how to get to the top of the search results, there would be much less motivation to provide quality content.

What difference does RankBrain make on the Google searching experience?

The old search engine optimization model focused on rewarding a strong web of links and keywords. Now that artificial intelligence is involved in each individual Google search, SEO is a totally different game. This process of machine learning has created an entirely new approach to SEO.

When you type something in and press the search button, Google is still providing you with results that are mostly traditionally ranked. However, machine learning is now featured on top of that ranking system. This makes the searching process for users easier, and the trick of SEO more complicated.

Google wants to be sure that not only is the code, content, and amount of keywords of a website is up to standard, but that users are actually using the site. This is when the content centric search and semantic search algorithms come into play.

What does the new SEO ranking model look like?

Before RankBrain was introduced, if your pages had cleverly arranged content and keywords, you could get away with a high ranking position on the search page even if you weren't getting any clicks.

Now, even if you have high ranking because of your content, SEO won't stick around for you if no one is clicking on your website. You could have lots of links, neat coding, effective design. If you don't have high user engagement, your site won't get anywhere.

If you don't have much engagement right now, there might not be a need to worry. Google will keep checking on your content to see if you are a contender for a higher rank. If you don't get your clicks up, however, your ranks will go further and further down. Google will count you out of the competition for high positions.

Why Machine Learning is the Future of SEO

Machine-learning is the future to SEO. The relationship between the time spent on a page and organic search traffic is changing. Something algorithmic is happening and in real time.

With every analyzed character, RankBrain is becoming more and more intelligent. While people are still searching phrases that have never been searched before, the percent of new searches to be analyzed is getting smaller. Most of the time, Google knows exactly what you’re asking, and can provide the best results available. With the expansion of artificial intelligence systems, instances of Google not having a good answer to your query will be almost unheard of.

How to Utilize Machine Learning to Your Site's Benefit

SEO is determined by conventional factors. You need quality, superior content to keep your site afloat in terms of SEO. Google values user engagement, and engaging users value quality content. You must satisfy the requirements of both Google and your users to be successful in the ranking process.

You can remain in high ranks by being your own filter, and fixing failing content. Take note of what style of writing, arrangement of images, and page layout has the highest user engagement and let your findings reflect in new or repaired pages. Remember that there's not one exclusive way to get high ranks. Pay attention to what works for you, for your users, and for Google.

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