by Ryan Dearth
As a company, Google’s mission is “To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Google dominates 75% of the U.S. online search market. Every month millions of unique users perform billions of searches. As users, we know what our goals are when typing something in Google. But what are Google’s goals before and after we click to search?
A Quick History Lesson
The creation of computing machines came about to enhance the lives of humans. Making the accomplishment of tasks easier and more efficient. Since the dawn of the digital age, an everlasting goal has been to improve the partnership between humans and computers.
A grad student named Larry Page became an ardent advocate of the idea that user experience trumped all when it came to computing.
Larry embraced the concept of user-focused design. He insisted computer interfaces should be intuitive. And he openly acknowledged that the user is always right.
To this day, the concept of user experience influences digital evolution. And it comes as no surprise that 20 years later this co-founder of Google has instilled these ideals at the core of online search.
The #1 Goal of Google: Provide the Best Search Results
So what is Google’s goal? Google’s goal is to provide the best results possible to your query.
Google is universally known as a place to go to find information. Answers, facts, directions, products, services; seemingly infinite information at the tip of our fingertips. The word “Google” was even categorized as a verb by the Oxford English Dictionary in 2006. To the best of its ability, Google shows us what we ask for when we ask for it.
Why does Google give us instant answers to our questions? And for that matter, how do we know that the answers provided by Google are the answers we are looking for?
Simply put- user behavior and algorithms. Algorithms sift through a massive database filled with millions of websites, links, directories and publications. There are other factors that come into play, but that’s the “simple” gist of it.
Google Goal #2: Maximize UX
As I mentioned, Google does not rely solely on incomprehensible algorithms. Much of the daily activity each of us engages in online plays a significant role in how the search engine determines rankings. It recognizes how we interact, what we click, what we share and most importantly, what we DON’T need.
Additionally, people sharing and recommending content online is another determination. This type of user behavior is similar to researchers citing other works and primary sources in a bibliography.
Google Goal #3: Eliminate Low-Quality Content from SERP’s
Google is constantly updating its algorithm to meet ever-evolving user needs as well as snuff out black hat SEO. Over the past five years, we have seen the most significant Google algorithm changes. The changes are aimed to improve search results so the best, most relevant content gets the exposure it deserves.
With these updates, Google also intends to eliminate low-quality content from search results. Websites get penalized when they fail to follow quality guidelines. There are many reasons why a site gets flagged, and sometimes a penalty is deserved.
Google doesn’t penalize sites to be a tyrant and rule the online universe. Google rewards sites for offering high-quality content and useful information, products or services.
When Google rolls out an algorithm update or creates new ranking signals, it’s not to prevent sites or businesses from ranking. It’s to improve the quality of search results. Google evolves when it sees a need for improvement or when it recognizes an opportunity for enhanced UX. The general rule of thumb to avoid Google penalties: Provide your audience with unique, useful, informative and relevant content that serves a purpose.
The primary goal of Google is to provide users with the most relevant, highest quality results based on user search queries, i.e. their wants and needs when performing a search online. Google must trust a website or business before it ranks it organically.
Google’s reputation is based on the quality of the information it provides. It’s not going to rank a website or business it does not trust.
- Google does not care about a website or a business’s marketing goals
- Google does not care to whom a business wants to be marketed
- Google does not care where a business says they offer services
Google only cares about providing users with relevant, high-quality search results as fast as possible.
Here are Ten Things We Know to be True directly from Google’s core philosophy to help guide us as well as business owners.