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July 10, 2008

Google Share Their Ranking Philosophy

In an official post on the Google Blog called Introduction to Google Ranking, Amit Singhal, Google Fellow in charge of the ranking team, has revealed some fascinating insights into the way Google search results are collated and ranked. In the process, he’s also busted a few common myths surrounding their elusive algorithm.

Here are some of the tidbits from Amit’s post that I found most interesting:

  • While web search is the most used Google search service, the same ranking algorithms are also used, with modifications, for other Google search services, including Images, News, YouTube, Maps, Product Search and Book Search.
  • Amit claims there is no manual intervention of search results, meaning that the final ordering of the results is decided by their algorithms using the contributions of the greater Internet community, not manually by Google.
  • Whenever Google return less than ideal results for any query in any language in any country, they use that as an inspiration for future improvements. In Google’s opinion, a broken query is just a symptom of a potential improvement to be made to their ranking algorithm.
  • Google make about ten ranking changes every week and their engineers understand exactly why a page was ranked the way it was for a given query.
  • Google stand by their clear written policies for websites and do take action on sites that are in violation of those policies or for other reasons (e.g. legal requirements, child porn, viruses/malware, etc).

11 Responses to “Google Share Their Ranking Philosophy

    avatar Google Share Their Ranking Philosophy | Search Engine Optimization says:

    […] Google stand by their clear written policies for websites and do take action on sites that are in violation of those policies or for other reasons (e.g. legal requirements, child porn, viruses/malware, etc). See original here: Google Share Their Ranking Philosophy […]

    avatar David Rankin says:

    I thought Google admitted that they employ thousands of people who manually review and adjust the search engine results ? It makes sense when you see some poorly optimised sites at the top of the results

    I think people in the industry place too much importance on site optimization and forget that Google wants their users to find the content they are searching for. Those poorly optimized sites that hit the top of the list are there because “thousands of Google users” (the manual reviewers?) found what they were looking for.

    Site optimization is not top priority when promoting a website, it’s just one tiny advantage. Give Google’s users what they want and Google will find you.

    avatar Sean Sloan says:

    In my recent experience those high ranking, poorly optimized sites have one thing in common: lots of inbound links.

    People are still gaming the system but it may have become more “off page” than ever because these were literally ALL unearned, more than likely paid links from obscure directory sites that, I believe, no human being would ever use.

    avatar Tony says:

    Exactly. I thought Google employ thousands to do that. I understood from the various forums I visited saying that Google has a huge team of people doing the tweaking.

    Not there is a turn to the story.

    avatar Jond Fond says:

    I believe that opening up your web is very important in order to get people to enable new products on top of your content.

    Why would I ever waste my time on a comment here again? Twenty-four hours and my comment is still “awaiting moderation.” Is there any specific reason or cause for this kind of control? Why not let the posts fly and delete the few you feel are spam?

    Because you just lost a commenter.

    avatar web hosting says:

    people who manually review? I won’t work for google if that is the case:)

    avatar SiteProNews: How To Create Your Own Perpetual Traffic Machine | Fighting Spam says:

    […] Google Share Their Ranking Philosophy […]

    avatar MGA says:

    Everyweek a google guy steps up and announce a statement about their ranking algorithm.

    avatar Lex says:

    it’s interesting…. in all fundamentals, Google is still secretive, of course it has to be so that people don’t game the system any more than they do. What’s revealed above doesn’t really say very much.

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