Google Search is tackling clickbait in this way

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Google Search is tackling clickbait in this way

The company is taking steps to tackle clickbait in its search results because Google knows we hate it. As of next week, Google will reduce rankings for offending websites, while rewarding those that produce original, high-quality content.

The term "clickbait" refers to advertisements that make bold or even outrageous claims in order to entice you to click the ad to find out more. The title and snippet of search results can also be misleading and lead to a click.

It is possible that you won't find that information or anything relevant to your search on a clickbait page. As you scroll down the page, you will see several more ads, giving the unscrupulous marketer and web developer what they wanted. It's frustrating to get tricked into this blackhat SEO technique and a huge waste of time.

The idea of improving search results to show more useful content sounds great, but achieving this isn't easy, and Google has been refining its search engine continuously since 1997. The next generation of Google Search will show even more accurate and valuable results after more than two decades.

If a website simply gathers results from others, for example, movie reviews from multiple sources, but doesn't add anything new, its ranking will suffer. Instead, you will be likely to find new information and original commentary about the upcoming movie "Wakanda Forever" by searching online. In addition to online education, arts and entertainment, shopping, and technology, Google predicts the improvement will be most noticeable in searches related to these areas.

It means that aggregators such as Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic hold less weight compared to original reviews in search results. As part of this update, the site seems to be primarily targeting reviews and content that appears to be designed to attract clicks instead of informing users.

Bots seem to be targeted by the update as well. Google did not specifically state how it plans to handle content written by bots. However, the company points out that content "might not be as insightful as you would expect, or it may even seem as if it was created for, or even by, a person."

In its blog post, Google didn't detail how it detects misleading websites, but it has plenty of data and machine-learning resources to analyze the search volume and visits to particular websites versus the amount of time spent on those sites after clicking through. The extent of the impact remains to be seen, but any improvement is welcome.

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