Photo provided by:

Photo provided by:

Hummingbird seems to be increasingly drilling upwards to the fore of the SEO community and is becoming even more and more of a talking point than it was when it arrived as we see the full fallout of the update.

Semantic search is changing the game and the Hummingbird algorithm is capable of using semantic technology to refine queries, extract entities as answers and offer people results specifically for them. It’s also capable of answering queries directly and is more dynamic and interactive than previous forms of results. In short, it’s making big changes. So, how do you unlock its potential?

Form Based Queries

Businesses now need to optimise their site’s for user intentions and this is where the Google form based queries to answer questions comes into play. This is an integral part of Hummingbird and is best explained here.

In essence, to optimise for user intent it’s best to consider queries that may also be asked. So, if you run a travel business and are offering information from A-B- it might also be a good idea to show activities, places of interest and other interesting things related to ‘B’ by the target audience. This will provide the user information they would intend on finding out otherwise.

Social Matters

Social media is playing a more integral role in search than ever before and will continue to do so. By finding out the sort of content your audience or customers like you can then produce content to fit that.

This means business should identify audience interests and then create content to meet those needs. This allows you to target your content strategy and make more of Hummingbird’s algorithm and semantic search in an intelligently targeted but unified manner – something that excites us at


Google+ is important for a whole myriad of reasons and you need to be sure that you are using the Authorship associated with it. This ensures that Google will regard your business in the best light. So, follow this guide to optimisation.


You will also need to learn how to mark-up pages to ensure you make the most of Hummingbird. Take a look here to learn about the process of mark-up. Google also has its helper and there are an increasing number of WordPress plug-ins that are also there to suit the task.

Use what you Know?

Other onsite and offsite techniques will also help and can make a lot of difference. Page load times, site maps and ensuring your site is mobile ready help. This is something that we expect Google to look into to an increasing degree in 2014.

Google’s changing and so is search and early adopters who will use social, SEO, semantic web and other factors together will be the ones who come up trumps. We’re moving away from the Page Rank orientated SERPs of old and towards a multimedia faceted result that predicts, answer, searches and discusses what we need and ask.

It’s a different world but one that we think can only be good for users.

About the Author:

Cormac Reynolds

By Cormac Reynolds

Cormac Reynolds has worked in the area of writing for a number of years. He enjoys sports and also getting out and about away from the office.

Quacktastic Reviews:

Leave a Comment