How Machine Learning Is Changing SEO

 

Machine learning is causing the SEO industry to change at a rapid pace. It is more vital than ever for marketing professionals to keep on top of new developments in order to continuously deliver effective campaigns for every business.

Machine learning algorithms are forms of artificial intelligence and RankBrain, made by Google, is currently one of the best examples of the technology. There are already three different levels of artificial intelligence.

Artificial Narrow Intelligence focuses on one specific task, such as beating the world’s best scrabble player. Artificial General Intelligence can perform tasks on a par with a human, whereas Artificial Superintelligence is able to complete tasks that are beyond the achievements of a single human.

RankBrain has been developed by a team of data scientists that fall under the umbrella of connectionists, who think that connections between different neurons in the brain hold the secret to our retention of knowledge. The key to RankBrain is referred to as deep learning, and this technology has the ability to learn from the data that is fed into it without having to be explicitly instructed on how to do it.

 

A Change in SEO

RankBrain counts machine learning as one of its three most important factors when it comes to search queries or keywords. Implementing good practice in this area is therefore vital to the achievement of positive results from SEO strategies and being able to secure a highly ranking search position.

As many as 15% of all search engine queries conducted each day are unique and, as such, machine learning is becoming a determining factor in how successful a strategy from an SEO agency will be conceived and implemented. The technology will make educated guesses as to the meaning of phrases and words it is unfamiliar with in order to effectively and efficiently handle all search queries.

Regression analysis was used by data scientist to decipher the latest changes to Google’s algorithms. By comparing data from before and after the shift they could claim with confidence they have found the reason for the change in rankings. However, now Google will implement a different mixture of algorithms for every single search result or keyword.

Niche Is Best

Google quickly discovered their ability to teach RankBrain to recognise differences between good and bad websites. The technology is able to filter through results and identify which are more reputable. Going one step further, it is also able to identify websites with similar structures to websites that have already been deemed as authoritative sites. These websites will therefore be positively associated with the authoritative sites and will achieve higher rankings.

This is a straightforward process for websites that are easy to classify but not so easy for websites that house a variety of very different categories. Machine learning technology is not infallible, and therefore ensuring your website stays niche and mimics the structure of respected websites in that niche will protect your site from being misclassified.

Loopholes have now been closed by the development of machine learning as the technology moves closer to being on par with humans. Proper use of data and analytics is of the utmost importance for SEO’s going forward. The world of SEO continues to become more and more technical.

To make sure that SEO is working for your website, or to discuss your digital marketing strategy, why not get in touch with us. We're an award winning digital marketing agency covering the South of England.