If you’re as obsessive as I am about SEO you’ll already know about Bill Slawski’s SEO By The Sea.
For years now Bill has been studying Google’s patent filings and feeding back to the SEO community valuable insights about what this means for SEO.
Synonym Identification Based on Co-occurring Terms
Invented by Abhijit A. Mahabal, Takahiro Nakajima, Zachary A. Garrett, and Kenji Inoue
Assigned to Google
US Patent 8,538,984
Granted September 17, 2013
Filed: April 3, 2012
The full patent details can be found here.
The announcement of the new algorithm told us that Google actually started using Hummingbird a number of weeks ago, and that it potentially impacts around 90% of all searches.
It’s being presented as a query expansion or broadening approach which can better understand longer natural language queries, like the ones that people might speak instead of shorter keyword matching queries which someone might type into a search box.
It is possible that the Hummingbird algorithm works somewhat differently than what is described in the claims and/or description of this patent, but they seem to be a pretty good match.
Read more about the patent to get some deeper insights into what Hummingbird means and what you can do to ensure your content strategy and SEO are future-proofed.
If you want some deeper insights, head over to Webmaster World and read this excellent post which details related Hummingbird patents and more of bill’s brilliant analysis and insights.