SEO News You Can Use: Personalized Rankings Are Coming to Google Search

SEO News You Can Use: New Updates to Chrome FLEDGE

While Search Generative Experience (SGE) has been the most radical change in how Google Search works, the company doesn’t stop there. On November 15, 2023, Google announced three new features to make your experience more personalized than ever.

The first one is the “Follow” button integrated across searches, so you would see new topics and articles right in your Discover feed. This comes after Google integrated Discover into its homepage, making it more visually appealing and, well, useful.

“Tap the “Follow” button in search results, and you’ll automatically see articles and videos about marathon training on Discover, the homepage of the Google app,” said Cathy Edwards, Google’s Vice President and General Manager for Search.

From there, you can proceed to Search and find fresher content based on the topic/s you follow. Search will also notify you if new, “helpful, relevant and reliable information,” content goes up.

Previously only available on Google’s mobile app, Perspectives will also make its debut in the Desktop Search experience as Google pivots further into connecting you with “someone with firsthand experience.” 

Now, as you search the web, you’ll also find an expert’s relevant information, such as:

  • Social handles
  • Follower count
  • Content popularity

Google also claims that some of its previous algorithm updates were meant to prepare Google Search for this change. Here’s what Edwards said:

“As part of this work, we’ve also rolled out a series of ranking improvements to show more first-person perspectives in results, so it’s easier to find this content across Search.”

Perspectives on Desktop could be a boon for content creators and companies that already have a foothold in their industry, exhibiting E-E-A-T across their content.

(Read more: What is E-E-A-T and How Does It Impact SEO?)

The last announced feature is Notes, which can be found on Google’s Search Labs program, a hub for experimental features for the search engine:

“Notes gives people a helpful layer of human insights on each Search result, working hand in hand with existing content on the web and making it more useful,” Edwards said.

With Notes, users can share tips and advice on web content directly from Google search engine results pages (SERPs). That’s a great way of adding a social layer to an otherwise dull experience.

Read Google’s full announcement here.

More SEO News You Can Use

“You May Also Like” and Sponsored Content Sections Spotted on SGE: Google is experimenting with a new ad format in its Search Generative Experience (SGE), referred to as “you may also like.” This format presents sponsored content in a carousel format, particularly following SGE follow-up questions. “Worth noting I only had these show up for about a day in SGE… then nothing. So Google is clearly testing the module of sponsored content,” said Glenn Gabe in an X post after spotting the feature. This move is part of Google’s efforts to plug more advertising and paid traffic from SGE, which has been a primary concern for many publishers ever since SGE was introduced. Read the full X thread here.

New Google Search Structured Data for Educational Videos Introduced: Google has rolled out structured data markup for educational videos to “better understand the content in your video, and provide an enhanced experience to help learners find the right content.” This new feature allows videos to display detailed snippets in search results, like educational level and video type. For publishers, it requires proper markup implementation and public accessibility of the videos for improved search visibility and user relevance. Learn more about this new markup in Google’s help documentation.

Google Adds Documentation for “Safety Crawler”: Google has updated its documentation to include a mystery crawler named “Google-Safety.” According to Google, this special case crawler is used for identifying malware and ignores robots.txt directives. For context, the Google-Extended crawler that is meant to help Google’s AI models is a common crawler. The update on the crawler list clarifies Google-Safety’s purpose, specifically for abuse-specific crawling like “malware discovery for publicly posted links on Google properties.” So, if you’re worried some spy crawler is watching your back, you can breathe a sigh of relief now – Google’s only doing its job to keep the Internet safe from malware and abuse. Read the complete list of Google crawlers.

Google To Update Search Handling of Third-Party Hosted Content: Following the September 2023 Helpful Content Update, Google Search Liaison is giving everyone a heads-up about the changes in how the company will handle third-party hosted content. We recently covered this update, explaining that the Search’s algorithms will now process third-party content to determine the overall helpfulness of your website. “I hope and expect everyone will see things improve over time,” the SearchLiaison said in an X reply, hinting that the guidance in Google’s help documents isn’t the only action they’re taking. So, if you’re still hosting irrelevant third-party content, now is the time to crack them down before Google does. Read the full story from Search Engine Roundtable.

Yahoo Searches Resurges, Launching in Early 2024: Brian Provost, SVP & GM at Yahoo, announced at the 2023 Search Marketing Expo Next event that Yahoo Search is launching a revamped search experience in early 2024. This update will start with basic features and a redesign, followed by more advanced artificial intelligence (AI) features. Will Google have another worthy competitor? We’ll see in early 2024. Here’s a Search Engine Journal article to read more about this story.

Editor’s Note: “SEO News You Can Use” is a weekly blog post posted every Monday morning only on SEOblog.com, rounding up all the top SEO news from around the world. Our goal is to make SEOblog.com a one-stop-shop for everyone looking for SEO news, education and for hiring an SEO expert with our comprehensive SEO agency d

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