Google announced that it has been rolling out a new update called Bert.
I know what you are thinking… does this update really matter? Should I even spend time learning about it?
Well, Bert is impacting all English search queries.
To give you an idea of how big of an update this is, it’s the biggest update since Google released RankBrain.
In other words, there is a really good chance that this impacts your site. And if it doesn’t, as your traffic grows, it will eventually affect your site.
But before we go into how this update affects SEOs and what you need to adjust (I will go into that later in this post), let’s first get into what this update is all about.
What is Bert?
Bert stands for Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers.
You are probably wondering, what the heck does that mean, right?
Google, in essence, has adjusted its algorithm to better understand natural language processing.
Just think of it this way: you could put a flight number into Google and they typically show you the flight status. Or a calculator may come up when you type in a math equation. Or if you put a stock symbol in, you’ll get a stock chart.
Or even a simpler example is: you can start typing into Google and its autocomplete feature can figure out what you are searching for before you even finishing typing it in.
But Google has already had all of that figured out before Bert. So let’s look at some examples of Bert in action.
Tips to Make Your Website Google-BERT Friendly
Google BERT is one of the major updates by Google that impacts 10% of search queries. It helps Google understand nuances and search queries better and assists it in finding more relevant content for those queries.
If you have noticed ranking drops during the recent Google Updates then there could be chances that Google BERT has impacted your site. So if you have noticed drop then it means your content is not for those queries for those you have noticed drops.
But What if your main keywords have dropped?
The answer is the same; your content is not for that query.
This means your content is not useful for that query. So Google BERT doesn’t rank you higher.
I have found some major issues that could be the reason for ranking drops. So here are some tips to make your content Google-BERT friendly;
You should understand the intent (nature) of a keyword before creating content for that keyword.
In simple words, you need to figure out what a user wants to do by searching that keyword.
For example, Forbes was ranking for the Keyword “Los Angeles SEO” But now it has been outranked because of the wrong search intent.
People Search this keyword to find an SEO company in LA But this article has informational intent. So Google BERT doesn’t rank it higher.
Be Very Specific
Your content needs to be very specific to the topic that you are covering. Don’t cover 50 topics in one article.
For example, if you are writing about “Best sedan cars in 2020” then don’t cover “Best SUVs” in that article.
Longer Content Can Put You in Trouble
Longer content can’t help you rank higher but can harm your rankings. It is the major issue that I found with many sites. Word count is not a Google ranking factor.
And creating unnecessary longer content reduces the quality and relevancy So, Google doesn’t like to rank your content on top and users also don’t like that.
I’m not saying that you should totally stop creating long-form content. You should create where it’s required. And Provide unique value to your users in the form of experiments, experiences, studies, etc. through your content.
For one of my clients, I have updated the content and removed content from their blog posts. Their keywords climb on the first page of Google.