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Search Engine Recap - Week 50

Each week, we analyze the latest updates and news from the search engine world. Our goal is to provide marketing professionals with the necessary overview to keep companies ahead of the curve in development and competition. Welcome to week 50.

search news week 50

'Year in Search' and 25th Birthday

Google celebrates its 25th birthday by reviewing the top searches of the year in 'Year in Search', as well as the evolution of the search engine over the past two and a half decades. We bring you a rundown here.

Historical Figures and Culture Influence Searches Over Time

Naturally, what happens in the world directly impacts what we search for. This is especially evident when looking at Google's most searched trends over time. Historical and cultural figures like Cristiano Ronaldo and Taylor Swift, as well as phenomena like Harry Potter and Pokemon, have been prominent in searches for extended periods.

Additionally, social trends and events have influenced everything from ice bucket challenges to more serious matters such as conflicts and war.

What this tells us is that world events and media significantly impact our search behavior, directly linked to demand and consumption across all industries.

With a focus on individuals, games, and social trends, there's been a rising need for online products, particularly fueling e-commerce growth. Moreover, search engine interest in celebrities has created a demand for platforms like Instagram and TikTok, where fans can follow their idols' daily lives.

Major events, both good and bad, have also increased awareness and the need for movements and community, shaping agendas nationally and internationally.

In other words, the world's agenda has mirrored the search engine's agenda and continues to do so.

You can view Google's Year in Search for 2023 here.

Needs and Ambitions Evolve the Search Engine

With constantly evolving technology, both user needs and Google's ambitions have shaped the search engine into what it is today. There have been significant changes from the first classic 'blue links' in search results, which all looked the same, to today's results that reflect formats matching individual searches (text, image, video, etc.). Key milestones include Google Images, autocomplete, BERT, MUM, multi-search, and the recent development of Bard, SGE, and Gemini.

These major and complex milestones embrace the search engine we know today, where the annual trends shared by Google give us insights into user interests and the demand that needs to be met in the new year.

2024 and the AI Mission

Beyond the last 25 years of development and history, there's also a focus on the future. Google emphasizes its significant commitment to AI, a prevailing trend across many areas. Google sees AI becoming more crucial for search, highlighting the importance of incorporating AI and understanding it in today's SEO strategies.

Google's 25-year summary provides a perspective on the critical need for all companies to stay updated with cultural trends, technological advancements, and the evolving nature of search interests.

Google 'Review Update' Rolled Out

In November, Google launched another 'product reviews' update, which has now been fully rolled out. An area which has been a focus area for the past 1-2 years.

The aim is to improve the ranking system for content reviewing products or services, increasingly important as reviews have historically been written based on thin experience or using AI tools.

The timing is particularly relevant, following Black Friday and leading into the holiday season, a critical time for reviews influencing our gift purchases.

Google has also stated that it will no longer announce future review updates, as this will be an ongoing feature in the algorithm, meaning the search engine will automatically update rankings based on the review system. This places greater demands on all websites that produce reviews and sell products.

Therefore, as marketing professional, you should ensure you stay updated with Google's guidelines, as the updates will prioritize insightful content written by experienced experts.

Google Maps Introduces New Control Options for Locations

Google Maps is introducing new privacy features that reduce the availability of location data. This gives users more control over their data, for instance, making it easier to delete location-based activities in settings.

This increased focus on privacy from Google will impact businesses and ad campaigns that run location-based ad targeting strategies, potentially reducing the amount of user data based on locations.

If you want to learn more about this update, you can read more here.

Takeaways and Recommendations

Google marks 25 years, reflecting on a quarter-century that has shaped the search engine we know today. The common key factor for this development has been the global agenda, from events to individuals and technology, each influencing search interest and subsequent demand, which businesses must address - and continue to do so. This is also reflected in this year's Year in Search.

Searches and data have been the foundation for understanding where the world is heading, what interests us, and the information expected to be delivered.

Therefore, it's crucial for all companies today and in the years ahead to understand what's happening in the world and how selected target groups are developing needs through search.

Understanding is one thing; optimizing is another. Google continues its journey to develop the most innovative search engine, highlighted by all updates to date, including this week's "review update" and Google Maps update.

To stay at the forefront in 2024 and beyond, it's essential to follow the search engine's development and its consequent guidelines.

Thomas Bogh

CPO & Partner

Thomas er CPO samt Partner, hvorfor fokus til dagligt ligger i evig analyse af Googles algoritme og udvikling af SEO som produkt. Thomas har arbejdet med SEO i flere år med stor passion for at sprede know how på, hvordan man som virksomhed implementerer SEO bedst i sin forretning. Ved siden af Bonzer bidrager Thomas med viden til læserne hos bl.a. Search Engine Journal, DanDomain og Detailfolk. Herudover har han også undervist i Digital Mediestrategi på Copenhagen Business School i København. Har du ønsker eller spørgsmål vedr. SEO universet, kan du altid kontakte ham på [email protected].

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A brief meeting, where we review your position in the market and present the opportunities.