What Is Universal Search?

Posted on January 16, 2010 in Uncategorized

Definition of Universal Search

On May 16, 2007, Google rolled a seismic algorithm change, introducing the “Universal Search” system that blends listings from video, images, news, local listings, and book search engines in addition to the listings it already gathers from its web spiders that seek out and crawl web pages.

For example, go to Google and enter “smoky eyes” and see what is returned in the listings.  What is visible is not only normal text results, but also images and video posts as well:

smoky eyes search result

smoky eyes search result

All of these elements blended together is the very definition of Google’s “Universal Search”.  Since Google is in the business of finding the best information possible for keyword searches, it decided the best user experience included not just text in search engine results, but all information available online that is relevant to the user’s search.

How does Universal Search affect your search engine rankings?

These new rules mean new challenges, but also new opportunities.  Your Universal SEO strategy should not just be focused on text ­optimization– you must also optimize your videos, images, blog posts, and news releases.   Rather than looking at all these elements and optimizing them individually, it is a far more powerful Universal SEO strategy to look at all of your digital assets to see how they relate to one another and fit together, then optimize them all holistically.

How do I optimize to best take advantage of Universal Search?

Universal SEO is a new opportunity to develop richer multimedia content and explore new marketing channels.  For example in the past, a product launch normally consisted of a press release and web site announcement.  To make the most of Universal Search, your product launch should consist of the optimized press release and website announcement, and should at least also contain a short video (in accordance with VSEO best practices), several images, a blog post, and announcements using social media tools such as Twitter, FaceBook, and LinkedIn.

SearchPro Systems is a leading, New England based, national digital marketing firm offering complete, end-to-end, Universal Search Marketing solutions, specializing in Video SEO.