Google made (at least) 30 changes to Google Search in December, according to a post yesterday on the official Google Search blog. Now, the official Google Search blog isn’t one of those I subscribe to by RSS, because most SEOs like to blog, tweet, Facebook and Google+ Google news to death. I tend to hear about the big things without needing to read the nitty-gritty.
But this month, for the fun of it, I decided to read the nitty gritty. It turns out that, besides the Google Image Search and sitelinks changes that will get the SEOs going, Google has done some cool little stuff lately that more directly affects my life—as a Google searcher, not just as a person working in the Internet marketing industry.
Said cool stuff includes:
1. Better lyrics results
Next time your friend swears it’s “blinded by the light, revved up like a douche in the corner of the night” and you need to prove that it’s really “blinded by the light, wrapped up like a deuce, another roamer in the night” (that’s not true, either–settle all your Manfred Mann-related arguments here), Google says it will get you to the right (or at least quality) lyrics faster.
By the way, when you mishear or misinterpret lyrics, that’s called a mondegreen. True story.
2. Live results for NFL and college football
I don’t give a flying fish whether Alabama beats LSU or LSU beats Alabama in Monday’s BCS Championship. But I do like to tune into the last few minutes of a live football game if the score is close. Now Google returns live results for NFL.com and ESPN.com’s NCAA football results with the latest scores, schedules and standings. All I need is a quick search on my phone to know whether I should change the channel from Fraiser reruns to the big game.
In late November, Google did the same thing with live results for Major League Soccer and the Canadian Football League. At least the NFL made it to the Top 3 in the priority list.
3. Faster mobile browsing
Lately, I do most of my evening Internet browsing on my smartphone. Also lately, I have noticed that multiple redirects from websites trying to deliver me their faster! better! mobile site are, in fact, making things slower and worse. Google has changed things so that, at least when I click on a link from a Google mobile search result, it’s the final destination URL optimized for smartphones—no redirects to slow me down.
This means it will be way easier for me to search for “best cotton balls” from my bed after midnight on a fun-filled Friday and find, you know, the best cotton balls money can buy. Because that’s how I roll. (Drunk online shopping, it’s a thing.)
One final observation
Highlighting Google Search algorithm changes is part of blog series that Google started in November.
Matt Cutts, Distinguished Engineer, posted the first entry. Scott Huffman, Engineering Director, posted the second. Pandu Nayak, Member of Technical Staff, posted yesterday’s. I wonder if this is a rotating gig, or if someone different will get the job next month.
It’s really hard to write quality content on a regular basis, you know.