Have you heard the Hummingbird?

November 12, 2013 by in category News, SEO tagged as , , , with 2 and 0

What does this strange expression mean?  Said to come from the being “precise and fast”, Google recently launched “Hummingbird” the latest in their algorithmic updates.

I’m just going to share with you my interpretation and understanding of what the Hummingbird update means and how it will potentially benefit your business.

Hummingbird update? News from Simply Ruth Online MarketingAny updates Google makes to its algorithm (the formula or hard sum Google use to calculate which website, will be displayed where and for what search terms) are always a closely guarded secret, without a helpful handbook.

This time however, it seems that if your business is within a niche market place it will fair better than a generic all-things-to-all-men business if done in the right way.  So what does this actually mean?

Google’s been at it again.  In fact this is the biggest algorithm update since 2001 according to Google’s search chief Amit Singhal when he first joined the company.   Caffeine was also a big change back in 2010 however this was really to assist Google with improving how they gather information known as indexing.

Penguin and Panda were changes to parts of the old algorithm whereas  Hummingbird is much more of an overhaul than they were and is moving with the times.Hummingbird helps your niche Simply Ruth Ltd Online Marketing

As mobile usage is ever increasing so is voice search, people using Apple’s Siri on the iPhone 4S and beyond, for more on that read here: 

Google has improved how it displays results based on conversational search.  People are using their voice to search online and therefore may be more likely to say in a conversational manner what they are looking for.

“What’s the closed place to buy blue suede shoes to my home?”  Prior to Hummingbird the search engine may well focus on finding matches for the keywords “buy” and “blue suede shoes” for example.    Hummingbird may understand the location of your home, if you’ve shared that with Google.  It might understand that “blue suede shoes” will be sold in a particular shop and may well understand that by place you mean a real solid building.

Google actually said that Hummingbird is looking at the whole sentence, conversation and or meaning.  Which brings me to my next point, what does this mean for SEO?

SEO is still alive, and kicking!  Original, high quality content is and remains of great importance.  Social signals are also important (remember Google has around 200 different points that make up its complicated algorithm) in actual fact if your websites traffic hasn’t seen the impact of Hummingbird then it is unlikely to now.  Keep doing what you are doing!


photo credit: Eric Bégin via photopin cc

photo credit: Bill Gracey via photopin cc


  • Stephanie Riggs
    on March 26, 2014 Reply

    Hummingbird is most recent Google’s algorithm which is all about the queries researched. After the introduction of Hummingbird algorithm update, bloggers are focusing upon the contents which are a key to success. All those bloggers who have duplicated contents are kicked away from search results. I am pretty happy to read your comprehensive post about Google’s Hummingbird which allow me to understand its working and adopting measures to get more traffic and improve website’s position.

    • Author
      Marketing Simply
      on June 9, 2015 Reply

      Thanks for your feedback on this. I stand by my marketing mantra of consistently create engaging content and you will do just fine online!

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