Have you heard of the BERT update yet? Well, allow our New Orleans internet marketing company to introduce you to Google BERT, short for Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers. This is an algorithm that uses natural language processing (NLP) in machines to help them understand human conversation. BERT is just one more example of how Google results are becoming more refined and tailored to user intent.
The BERT update was released in October 2019, though the concept was made public in 2018. If you are new to the BERT update or just looking for more information, here is everything you need to know.
The algorithm aims to understand human language.
In a nutshell, BERT is a language representation model. It uses Transformers to analyze a word in a sentence and compare it to the rest of the sentence to make sure the context matches up. In other words, BERT will look at the entire sentence rather than picking out certain words. It will also analyze how the sentence is structured and where prepositions are placed.
BERT affects 10% of all queries.
According to Google’s own estimates, BERT is expected to impact about 10% of search queries – and English queries only. This is a big percentage, though it may not have caused as much damage as other updates. The reason why is because BERT is focused on longer, more conversational queries that a lot of SEOs don’t target at this time.
Good content is the key to good rankings.
If you’re worried about how BERT will affect SEO, rest assured that this update is not anything new. For a long time, Google has been encouraging webmasters to create effective content that is written to their audience. As long as you have been doing this, you should be fine. However, if your content is not updated, or you have been writing for the search engines, you may have some work to do.
BERT does not cancel out RankBrain.
Some people are wondering what will happen to RankBrain, but the short answer is nothing. RankBrain provides a better understanding of search queries using artificial intelligence. Now that BERT is here, the two can work together to make the search results even better. It is not a competition between the two but rather a partnership.
Keyword density is not the focus.
Because BERT focuses on search queries, your focus belongs on creating quality content that clearly answers your audience’s questions. It’s NOT about keyword density. If you’ve been stuffing your content with keywords to get higher placement or writing solely to the search engines, the algorithms will pick up on this and issue a penalty.
If you are concerned about the BERT update and how it may affect your website, contact WSI Star Web Solutions for a consultation. Our New Orleans digital marketing company can help you create optimized content that matches user intent and helps you rank higher in the search results.