Google unleashed RankBrain on the world earlier this year; however, it is only in the past month that it actually announced the algorithm’s existence and revealed the major influence it now holds over SEO.

RankBrain is now the third most important ranking signal and one that stands out from previous algorithm updates due to its machine learning capabilities. It is advanced enough to think for itself and get better at its job independent of intervention from human engineers.
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What exactly do we know about RankBrain and is it likely to result in a major change to the way in which sites optimise for organic search success, or is its impact being overstated?

RankBrain is smart

As the algorithm harnesses machine learning, it is not stuck in the same old patterns until Google decides to update it; instead, it should improve over time and essentially teach itself how to better handle the queries searched for by users. Cheltenham web design agencies will need to keep on top of how this evolves.

RankBrain is about uncovering meaning

Plenty of people who search for something on Google do so using the vaguest of terms, or using keywords that are not directly related to the subject they are actually trying to uncover. Handling duality of meaning has been difficult for the search giant in the past.

RankBrain is essentially a tool that presents people with pages based on the intent of a query rather than the words used. It improves its ability to do this by keeping track of billions of searches and working out which content is the most relevant over time.

RankBrain humanises search

Although ‘machine learning’ makes RankBrain sound like a cold, calculating system, it is actually one that should theoretically make entering a search into Google more like asking a human a question. Google will be able to detect subtleties of language better than ever before.

This gives an opportunity for Cheltenham web design companies such as to create content written in a much more natural manner for their clients.

RankBrain could ultimately eliminate the need to rely on keyword-oriented approaches to SEO, which seem artificial to human visitors, instead encouraging sites to build pages that are interesting, engaging and relevant and are written in a conversational tone that is also well optimised for Google’s algorithms to discover.