By David Harry
These days a lot of folks in the SEO world are focused on “user intent” and satisfying the queries that people are using to find what they’re after. They look at everything from user profiles and implicit user feedback (bounce rate, time on site, dwell time etc) to entities and more. But one thing I really don’t seem to see a lot of is how Google is actually handling the queries.
Over the last few years people have gravitated to RankBrain, BERT and more. Beyond that if we go back further, we tend to look at concepts over keywords since Google went to “things not strings”. But something I really don’t see a lot of is; query classifications.
Google and Query Classification
Today we’re going to look at a few patents/papers to see what might be at play with Google and hopefully teach you a few things to help further your thinking when performing this “thing of ours”. To better understand what it is, be sure to read my 2014 article over here.
In the patent “Query Classification” (granted in 2015) Google states
“Queries are classified as belonging to a particular category based on search result filtering settings for that particular category. The classification can thus be done independent of the content of the query, and therefore queries with ambiguous or emergent terms that cannot be classified by machine learned systems can still be accurately classified.”
And uh.. lol?
“The classifications can be used, for example, to adjust relevance scores to adjust a position of a search result in a ranking of search results for unfiltered search operations. For example, if the query is not categorized as a content type seeking query (e.g., not categorized as a pornography seeking query), and the query is received for an unfiltered search operation, then the search engine decreases a relevance score for each resource that includes content of that content type (e.g., resources that include pornography).”
Anyway, you get the idea. Obviously topically they can classify things as well.. as noted in the 2014 patent; “QUERY CLASSIFICATION BASED ON SEARCHENGINE RESULTS”
“In one embodiment, the predetermined classifications rep resent topics, for example movie, music, sports, business, politics, and books. In another embodiment, the predetermined classifications represent corpuses, for example a col lection of general web, news, question and answer, image, and video data. In yet another embodiment, the predetermined classifications reflect topics and corpuses.”
And an example they give is;
“For instance, for the movie classification, example queries can be “inception”, “the lord of the rings movie’, and “how to train your dragon”. The example queries of “inception”, “the lord of the rings movie’, and “how to train your dragon” in turn generate search engine results with terms for the movie classification. These terms specific to the movie classification can be signals indicative of a movie classification.”
And we can also understand some classification elements in the more traditional, “informational”, “transactional” and “navigational” queries. But that’s evolved so …read more
Read more here:: B2CMarketingInsider