Google is Everywhere! Search Engines Know Your Preferences

Massive Database Allows the Search Engine Giant to Customize Information Distribution

One of our colleagues noticed over the weekend that her Google News Feed contained information that appeared to be very specific to her interests. She wondered if she had configured her news feed on Google News to prioritize information from a specific publisher or about particular topics. A little research turned up that she wasn’t connected to the publisher in question through any immediately evident network association. Trying to reverse-engineer the display algorithm quickly appeared to be a fruitless effort.  In the end though, some past association , contact or activity connected the two of them so that when she called up her Google News feed, this bit of content was prominently displayed.

Google news feeds


The Google Remembers!

Internet activity is becoming less and less anonymous as more data collection allows increasingly intelligent -or at least relevant – information display on Google News. Enabled by incredibly detailed data collection and storage, search engines like Google can now store off individual activity – particularly when a user is logged onto their Google account. Search, social activity and other interactions are not only visible, they are recorded and stored.

Marketing Implications:

What does this mean for those that market products and services? The clear implication is that social activity matters a great deal. Whether on Google News or on search engines, an organization’s ability to reach large numbers of other active information consumers and content producers is important. This requires an active effort not only in creating interesting content, but in promoting it, discussing it, reaching out to others about their content, and in general, becoming an active part of the information flow. As Google “sees all” the greater one’s level of engagement, the greater the chance that some connection will bring reader and content consumer together – even at unexpected times.

Level of Engagement

Elevating social engagement levels can be costly. (We have some ideas for you on creating Low Cost SEO Solutions and Social Media Management if you would like to read more.) Monitoring social activity – particularly social activity relative to a company’s brand presence – can be time consuming. Commenting and outreach are tasks that cannot be automated, so it requires a live human being with some level of industry expertise to manage the engagement. This is a unique role within most organizations. Some resources might be found in the sales and marketing departments, but organizations that have successful engagement programs utilize the entire company to generate unique perspectives and above all, unique and meaningful content.

Social Engagement and SEO

This discussion points out the interaction between social activity and search results. As Google News provides content that appears relevant to the reader’s interest, search algorithms also make use of this data to determine what content is more valuable or relevant to a reader’s search request. In past studies, we have determined that elevated Google+ engagement improves search page result placements – sometimes dramatically. So it follows that better social engagement ultimately improves search engine placement results.

Social Activity More Important than Ever

For those engaged in the internet marketing arena, this is old news. But…. social activity is now more important than ever. Building social channels, creating and promoting content over those channels and engaging with others in one’s industry or market niche improves internet visibility. It is through this improved visibility that new potential customers, contacts and clients can be reached.

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