What Does Google Universal Search Mean for SEO?

By Avelyn Austin | Jan 21, 2009
More Articles by Avelyn


Since May 2007, Google has slowly blended its information sources to develop an “integrated set of search results”.  Created for a better user experience, this type of search is known as Google Universal Search.  So what does this mean exactly?

Google users no longer need to visit Google Image Search to find images related to their query.  Instead, with a single keyword phrase users may see search results that include the typical websites as well as images, news, maps, videos, and more!  So what does Google Universal Search mean for SEO teams?

According to Chris Sherman‘s webinar on blended search, this means SEO teams must stretch beyond their traditional SEO tactics and begin optimizing other aspects of the site including, but not limited to:

  • Images – by adding keyword dense descriptions and ALT tags;
  • News (such as press releases) – by inserting keyword density and links back to the company site;
  • Videos – by including keyword dense descriptions;
  • Local Listings – by opting in to local online business listings and directories, making sure to keep the information up to date; and
  • Blogs – by pinging Google and users when you have added fresh content.

These efforts are of course in addition to current/traditional SEO efforts.  The reason why your team should begin implementing these extra optimization efforts is to allow you and/or your clients the opportunity to obtain multiple listings for one search, allowing for greater visibility.

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