Google

Google’s Hummingbird: Attempts to Target Search Options Based on Query Type

According to Search Engine Land, Google’s new Hummingbird algorithm is supposed to be more “precise and fast,” putting greater emphasis on understanding the intent of the user’s query. As a part of Hummingbird, Google seems to now do more than focus target results to the query intent; they are also adjusting the search options navigation based on the perceived user intent.

Here are some examples of what appears to be a work in progress by Google.

When I searched Google I see a standard search options navigation showing “Web”, “Images”, “Maps”, “Shopping”, “News” and “More”.

Google-standard-results

 

Adding the word nav into the query made Google think that I was looking for an application since they swapped “news” for “applications” as a search option.

google-nav-in-nav

 

 

When I searched Marketing Software the “News” option was replaced with “Patents”.

patents-in-google-nav

 

Showing “patents” as an option seems to make sense when the query contained software but when I swapped software with tools, Google replaced “patents” with “books.”

books-in-nav

 

Curious, I queried the name of an actual book, Marketing in the Age of Google (by Vanessa Fox) to see if Google identified the query as a book. Unfortunately, Google thought that this query was for a video since they swapped the “books” option for “videos”.

videos-in-google-nav

 

I added the word book into the query to see if this would force “books” as a search option. However, Google’s intent matching was unable to recalculate so much so that they didn’t show any fifth option at all-only showing the four standard options.

no-option-in-google-nav

 

Very specific queries,(Root Android 4.3 Forum) with the word forum showed “Discussions” as a search option…

discussions-in-nav

 

But, if the query is less specific, (Android Forum) “discussions” is removed and the default “news” is shown instead.

Standard-android

 

Pasta dishes brings up “recipes” as a search option.

recipes-in-nav

As expected, SEO blogs shows “blogs” as an option.

blogs-in-nav

 

Changing the Google search options based on user queries seems to be in its very early stages; however, this feature could be useful for anyone trying to figure out how Google might classify a keyword.

 

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