We're hiring

We love digital - Call
03332 207 677
and say hello - Mon - Fri, 9am - 5pm

Call 03332 207 677

Lucy Griffiths

Google Change Synonyms Display in Search Results

20th Jan 2010 Content Marketing, News, Industry News, SEO, 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

Lucy Griffiths
About the author

Lucy Griffiths

Lucy is an Internet Search Specialist focusing and working with clients on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Pay-Per-Click (PPC) strategies.

3 Comments

What do you think?

  • aspect-ratio Koozai - New Offices in Old Street, London
    Cat Birch

    We’ve Expanded Into Bigger And Better Offices In London

    We continue to go from strength to strength here at Koozai, and we are very proud to announce that our London branch has expanded into even bigger and better offices.
    (more…)

    Cat Birch
    @MissCatBirch
    9th Feb 2017
    News
  • aspect-ratio Google Tag Manager
    Emma North

    An SEO’s Guide to Planning Google Tag Manager Migration

    Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a powerful tool and when properly understood and implemented, can be an SEO’s best friend.

    However, before you can actually begin a migration to GTM, you need to take some key steps to ensure everything goes to plan.

    (more…)

    Emma North
    2nd Feb 2017
    Analytics

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?