One of the most annoying, and unproductive, aspects of Google has been to search for recent news or information and receive results that are years or decades old.
Anyone who has used Goggle as a serious search tool has encountered this frustrating problem. Searches for company financials or product areas would yield results from five or 10 years ago. Even searches for TV and movie schedules would bring up stale results.
Google finally has addressed the issue, announcing a major overhaul in its ranking algorithm that will be geared towards producing fresh results.
Google Fellow Amit Singhal announced the change using the homey analogy, “Search results, like warm cookies right out of the oven or cool refreshing fruit on a hot summer’s day, are best when they’re fresh.”
Singhal likened the significance of the freshness upgrade to last year’s Caffeine web indexing change that added a jolt of speed to Google's search results, and said the new change would impact from 6% to 35% of searches, depending on the topic.
When you search for information about a presidential election or annual conference, noted Singhal, “it’s implied that you expect to see the most recent event, and not one from 50 years ago.”
Now when you search for current events like “occupy oakland protest” or “nba lockout, he said, “you’ll see more high-quality pages that might only be minutes old.”
How will the change affect companies’ online marketing and SEO efforts? It’s too early to tell, but as James A. Martin on Social Media Today says, “it's pretty safe to say that being topical whenever possible—in your social media updates, blog posts, press releases, and other content—may help that content rank well in Google searches.”
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