Posted by larry.kim
Rand Fishkin posted another brilliant Whiteboard Friday last week on the topic of optimizing for RankBrain. In it, he explained how RankBrain helps Google select and prioritize signals it uses for ranking.
One of the most important signals Google takes into account is user engagement. As Rand noted, engagement is a “very, very important signal.”
Engagement is a huge but often ignored opportunity. That’s why I’ve been a bit obsessed with improving engagement metrics.
My theory has been that RankBrain *and/or other machine learning elements within Google’s core algorithm are increasingly rewarding pages with high user engagement. Not always, but it’s happening often enough that it’s kind of a huge deal.
Google is looking for unicorns – and I think that machine learning is Google’s ultimate Unicorn Detector.
Now, when I say unicorns, I mean those pages that have magical engagement rates that elevate them above the other donkey pages Google could show for a given query. Like if your page has a 5 percent click-through rate (CTR) when everyone else has a 1 percent CTR.
What is Google’s mission? To provide the best results to searchers. One way Google does this is by looking at engagement data.
If most people …read more