How The Bert Updates Will Impact Your SEO [VIDEO]

By Stacy |  Jan 3, 2020 (3 min read)

SEO | SEO News | Video

In fall 2019, Google introduced a new update for Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers. The update is commonly known as the BERT update and affects the way Google’s algorithm understands natural language processing.

More specifically, the update allows Google to better comprehend the context of what a person is searching for. It aims to understand the nuances of our everyday language.

Thanks to Google’s self-learning, the algorithm can better understand complex phrases and different word usages. 

For example, a word like ‘stand’ could mean different things to different people. It could represent going to a food stand, taking a stand, or standing up. All use the same word but have different meanings that Google can now understand.

This ability is useful for people when searching for different items that have similar names or labels (e.g., looking for a bank account versus a holiday near a riverbank). Thanks to the BERT update, Google can now understand the correct intent.

Although the update only rolled out a few months ago, it now affects about 10% of all search queries. 

How Do You Optimize for Google’s BERT Update?

Unlike past updates, Google is adamant that you cannot optimize for the BERT update. However, one thing you can do is continue to write useful content that correctly matches the user intent of your audience. Moving forward, if your content is not relevant, it won’t rank.

Rather than attempting to over-optimize your content for SEO, we suggest paying attention to the basics that help both humans and Google understand: 

  • Good grammar
  • Header formatting
  • Connecting your questions to answers
  • Keeping your sentences short and simple

The BERT update has the potential to affect all aspects of SEO and content. But overall, it will help the Google algorithm to understand the human language. This new update will have a significant impact on both conversational queries and international queries.

Most important is to remember to always write for specific user intents. The more general the content, the less likely it will be useful, and the lower the chance it will rank.

Want to improve your online traction in 2020? Brandastic is a digital marketing agency with offices in Orange County, Los Angeles, and Austin. We specialize in SEO for businesses and help you create a website that ranks well in the search engines. 

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