It’s official – Google now knows its ‘arm’ from its ‘arms’.
Revealed on the Google blog by Steve Baker last week was an important change to the way Google handles synonyms.
In the past, Google would have considered, for example, “arm reduction” and “arms reduction” as the same keyword. So when building links an search engine optimization could use either term and they would both help with ranking for the term “arm reduction”.
However – their meanings are totally different.
Now as we understand from Steve Baker, Google can differentiate between the two terms because it understands what they mean, as opposed to how they are spelt.
So if one is aiming to rank for the term “arm reduction” then the anchor texts from a link building campaign will have to match it in meaning as well as spelling. In this case, “arms reduction” would not benefit such campaign because it has a complete different meaning to the term “arm reduction”.
So why is this important?
Because it directly affects how an SEO agency or SEOs deploy link building strategies when it comes to determining the best keyword variations to use in anchor text.
If we get the keyword variations right, these changes can have a very positive effect on link building campaigns
Here is an example of an effective way to use synonyms:
If optimising for “car insurance” – using the term “auto insurance” will still provide good value for the campaign because it is a direct, valid synonym. A variation that the Americans use. So having “auto insurance” and “car insurance” as anchor texts will help with the rankings of both terms.
The changes to Google synonyms mean that content written for SEO purposes can now be less focused on a certain keyword and made broader, without losing any value for the term it is targeting.
By the use of clever synonyms it should now be possible to write friendlier end-user text and target even more search terms than previously. For the client and the SEO agency, that can only be a good thing.