Search Engine Optimisation For Personalised Search

Thursday, May 14th, 2015

personalised searchWith all changes to their search engine algorithm, Google’s primary objective is to provide the most accurate search results for each user. By expanding into advertising, email and social media services, Google has been able to gather data about each user that they think helps tailor results to them specifically. Of course, this has been met with a lot of debate, especially in relation to targeted advertisements being seen and Google having access to personal data that no other business or advertiser would normally have. Although it seems the majority of web users don’t care about this discussion – as long as they get search results that are relevant to them. When making search engine optimisations you should take personalised search into account through the following ways:

  • Location is key. Regardless of whether a user is logged into a Google account or not, the search always takes into account location unless it’s an incognito window. This goes for both desktop and mobile, so you can assume almost every search is influenced by location in some way. If you have a physical location, attaching yourself to a Google map through Google Local for business is one of the best ways to do this. Your listing will also show up with a nearby pin on Google Maps, making it much easier for searchers to visualise your location. You can also localise keywords and make sure it’s clear you serve a particular area, even if you aren’t physically located there.
  • Develop a history. Another one of the biggest influences on search results is whether a person has visited your website before. Whether a blog post, looking for a tool or on an unrelated search errand – Google gives precedence to sites that have already been visited, preferably more than once. If you can create content that gets people to visit your website even without converting or realising what you do, you’ll set yourself up to be clicked on more frequently in future.
  • Be mobile-friendly. Google detects whether a user is on a mobile device or not, so you need to take advantage of this by offering a site design that they deem mobile-friendly. Even desktop search results are heavily affected by this, with Google openly acknowledging a bias towards mobile-friendly websites.

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Taking advantage of Google’s desire for personalised search results is key to getting your site in front of as many eyes as possible, by localising and catering to different browsers and devices.

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Katie is a lover of words and art, born and raised in Christchurch. With a BA in English and Japanese, she’s happiest tapping away at her keyboard writing copy or articles, or else working on the latest illustration. To balance the creative side, Katie is also very motivated and a bit of a perfectionist, which helps with her SEO duties. Although her hobbies could probably be described as art, art and more art, she also enjoys long walks, good friends and travel.

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