Don’t fear the hummingbird

In Fall 2013, Google announced the changeover to the Hummingbird algorithm. Unlike previous changes like Panda and Penguin, which were merely updates, Hummingbird represented a complete algorithmic overhaul.

Google insiders explained that the aim of Hummingbird is to pay attention to each word in a search, account for spoken mobile search tools, and determine the intent of the searcher. Basically, they’re trying even harder to get to the bottom of the user’s needs by analyzing context. So the way we approach content development is more important than ever.

Why should online marketers care about Hummingbird? 

Because it means we can no longer rely on the keyword techniques that once drove users to our pages. The practice of finding the most frequently searched keywords or terms with the highest KEI and incorporating them as much as possible into copy and meta data is no longer relevant.

When creating online content, we can no longer fake it. We need to:

  • Always put the quality of the content first, before rankings
  • Conduct keyword research, but only incorporate keywords and phrases where they sound completely natural
  • Incorporate synonyms to account for potential search breadth
  • Anticipate the user’s needs and desires beyond the search. Our number one goal should be to figure out what questions and needs they are looking to have answered and provide that information
  • Still incorporate keywords into headers and other strategic positions, but never at the expense of clarity. The second most important goal should be to ensure users know exactly where to look for the information they seek
  • Keep mobile users in mind. With more and more searchers using functions like Siri, it’s important to keep language conversational and natural
  • Continue all social media efforts, focusing on getting shares from high-authority users rather than a specific number of likes, follows, or shares
  • When appropriate, entertain

Steve Masters wrote, “The Hummingbird approach should be inspirational to anyone managing and planning content – if you aren’t already thinking like Hummingbird, you should be. In a nutshell, think about why people are looking for something rather than what they are looking for. A content strategy should be designed to answer their needs, not just provide them with facts.”

How can I help?

If you’ve been thinking about using an out-of-house writer to produce content and improve your SEO, don’t hesitate to reach out. I’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.

In a nutshell, I can benefit your company in these ways:

  • EXPERIENCE. I’ve had lots of experience writing online articles, blogs, web copy, press releases, success stories, social media material, and all sorts of other content you might find on the internet. There is nothing more professionally fulfilling for me than seeing a client’s traffic and conversion rates increase
  • KNOWLEDGE. I’m passionate about following the most recent developments in the ways we are connected to one another via the web. You can expect that the content I create is based on solid marketing strategy and current best practices
  • COST. I will probably save you a pretty penny, while delivering great value. Hiring an in-house writer is expensive and using a cheap pay-by-word-count service sacrifices quality. Incorporating a dedicated freelance writer into your team is a cost-effective way to build a strong body of great content
  • FLEXIBILITY. I can provide content on any schedule you need, as often as daily
  • COMFORT. When it comes to process, you can be as involved, or as hands-off as you desire. Some clients like to come up with their own topics and provide me with a content calendar. Others prefer I research topics and send them a list for approval. Either way, I enjoy taking initiative and my goal is always to exceed your needs

Sound good? E-mail me at saralrfurlong@gmail.com or call (315) 264-8514.

I look forward to chatting with you!

Thanks,

Sara

 

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