Google have recently confirmed, via their Twitter @searchliaison account, that they now “consider passages from pages as an additional ranking factor.”
What does this mean?
Simply put, this change allows content writers and SEO specialists to create content in a way that better meets the requirements of their target audiences. Instead of writing an entire article that targets a particularly keyword term, we can now put together high quality, unique copy that covers a range of topics on a specific subject, knowing that one single paragraph within the page can help it achieve a greater level of organic visibility on Google for our focused search term, rather than writing an entire article about it.
So, for example, if we want a client to appear more effectively on Google for ‘The Benefits of Electric Cars’, we would now create high-end, unique copy that covers a wide range of topics relating to electric cars, including a section that highlights their benefits. Previously, the entire article would have had to highlight the benefits but, going forward, this change means that content creators can be more versatile and flexible with the copy they produce.
No longer do we need to be pre-occupied with thinking about breaking up content to be optimised around a single idea or keyword, as success can now be achieved via single passages of content instead.
However, this doesn’t mean that we can slack on our overall content quality, as Google were keen to stress that they are “still indexing pages and considering info about entire pages for ranking.”
It will be interesting to see how Google’s greater focus on passages within pages impacts organic rankings over the coming months and years, and it is certainly something that we will be keeping a close eye on!