Brands running organic search strategies on Google should closely tailor the content to their niche market because that’s how the search giant helps marketers pinpoint the messages that satisfy the query. It’s called automation through machine learning and artificial intelligence, a Searchmetrics study released this week explains.
The Searchmetrics ranking factor study for 2018, which analyzed 4,000 keywords on google.com, identifies the type of content the search engine considers the most important and then serves that content high in the search results for eight niche categories that include weight loss, travel destinations, furniture, and financial planning.
For example, Google results for searches related to weight loss are four times more likely to have a video on the page than results for "financial planning" or "credit" niches. E-commerce sites selling furniture can display nearly 28 images on a page − more than most other category niches − are still high in the query results despite the fact that more images sometimes make pages load more slowly.
The top results for the keyword “furniture” serve on average 27.9 images per page − the highest of all the niche markets. Similarly, in the niche category of recipes, the top ten search results average 19.8 images per page.
In contract, the finance sector had the lowest number of on-page images. The credit niche had around 6.5 images per page and financial planning had about 8.4 per page. In finance, the information-driven nature of queries, with people looking for facts or explanations about loans, mortgages and savings, means that images are less important than text content.
Video has been known to boost visibility of a product in search, but research suggests video content is not always necessary. While the top ten search results for “weight loss” related searches average 0.4 videos per page, for most of the others it was 0.1 videos per page or less.
The study also reveals that some higher-ranking search results in certain categories have more words on a page than others. “Financial planning,” for example, has an average of 2,581 words per page − the highest of all the niche categories analyzed − while “furniture only had 1,139 per page, and “destinations” had 1,018 words on a page.
Internal links also can be important for e-commerce categories like “furniture,” which typically has an average of 424, and “car” with an average of 223 per page.
This study is dangerous. I can see a lot of people using these correlations to make drastic changes to their content and being disappointed.