We love digital - Call
0330 353 0300Circle Info
and say hello - Mon - Fri, 9am - 5pm

Call 0330 353 0300Circle Info

Lucy Griffiths

Google Change Synonyms Display in Search Results

20th Jan 2010 Content Marketing Blog, News, Industry News, SEO Blog, Local Search 1 minute to read

Our in-house SEO Copywriter, Steve Logan, recently made an excellent post that explored the importance of spelling and grammar, with particular reference to writing for the web (see ‘The Typos and Language Errors that Turn Visitors Away).

Another consideration content writers and search engine optimisers need to have is for the use of synonyms in their writing. For some time now, Google have been showing synonyms bolded in the search results for stemming variants, such as the plural of a word, e.g. the searcher enters ‘picture’ but ‘pictures’ is also shown in bold.

Steven Baker, a Google Software Engineer, has just posted an article ‘Helping computers understand language‘ in which he explains how Google is constantly refining their algorithms in an effort to improve the quality of their search results. As part of this development, he announced that the search engine is now going to start putting in bold those synonyms where their algorithm is confident the meaning of a word is the same as the one searched for, e.g. searched for ‘pictures’ but ‘photos’ is bolded.

Clearly this can never be 100% successful and he even gives an example of a known error in their search results and some further examples of where this could be applied.

Although he doesn’t mention localisation, it will be interesting to see how this bolding of synonyms will (continue to) effect local search results. Just today, I carried out an experiment searching for UK results of the term ‘organise search engine optimisation’:

Google UK Localised Results

Google UK Localised Results

You’ll see that the second result has the US spelling of ‘organise’ and ‘optimisation’. To compound this, the site in question is very definitely an American company hosted in the US.

I’m sure Google will have ‘armies of Engineers’ looking in to refining local search results as well. Let’s just hope that our ‘special relationship’ hasn’t quite extended to swapping out the letter ‘s’ for ‘z’ just yet…

Share this post

Free Digital Clarity Call

Need some expert help to uncover what’s holding your digital marketing back? Let us show you for free!

3 Comments

What do you think?

aspect-ratio
Stacey Cavagnetto

What is a Content Strategy and Why do you Need One?

Stacey Cavagnetto
14th Jun 2021
Content Marketing Blog
aspect-ratio
Joaquin Lopez

iOS 14 Update: What You Need to Know For Facebook Ads

Joaquin Lopez
7th Jun 2021
Social Media

Digital Ideas Monthly

Sign up now and get our free monthly email. It’s filled with our favourite pieces of the news from the industry, SEO, PPC, Social Media and more. And, don’t forget - it’s free, so why haven’t you signed up already?

Unlike 08 numbers, 03 numbers cost the same to call as geographic landline numbers (starting 01 and 02), even from a mobile phone. They are also normally included in your inclusive call minutes. Please note we may record some calls.

Circle Cross