Martin Splitt Discusses Google Passage Ranking
Google’s Martin Splitt answered questions regarding the Passage Ranking algorithm, which significantly helps search engine optimisation experts and website owners with their SEO content strategy. Together with Bartosz Goralewicz and Cindy Krum, they discussed the new ranking system and how it affects SEO content.
Bartosz first asked whether passages will rank small sections of the content to help users with long articles on their web pages. Martin Splitt said that the Passage Indexing is essentially a ranking change, which is why he also refers to it as Passage Ranking.
The follow-up question was regarding specific tasks that SEOs and website owners should do to respond to this new algorithm, and Splitt said that there is nothing they can do about it. According to Splitt, the change is purely internal, so there is no need to make changes on their websites, markup, content, or pages.
Splitt also advised webmasters and SEOs to improve heading elements by reviewing and rewriting them. Doing so can better communicate the different parts of the content, allowing Google to have a deeper understanding of the articles regardless of markup.
However, he said that even if SEO experts and website owners do not rewrite their heading elements, Google is still able to tell if a specific part of the page is related to a user’s question and identify the portions of the content that aren’t.
The next question had to do with SEO agencies or software that claim they can optimise for Passage Indexing. Splitt said that it is indeed possible for SEOs to capitalise on Google’s new algorithm, but he warns everyone not to fall for such promises.
He then clears some of the most common misunderstandings of what Passage Indexing is all about. One myth is that people treat it as a big deal, but in actuality, Passage Indexing is just a smaller change intended to help people who do not know how to come up with effective SEO content strategies.
Splitt said that a lot of websites tend to feature overly long articles, which have had difficulty ranking because everything is diluted due to the length.
Bartosz also asked if Passage Indexing applies to eCommerce scenarios, such as long product category pages. Splitt said that it is not possible due to the lack of content in such situations, so passages ranking cannot do anything to help. So unless it is textual content, the page will not get any benefits from Google’s new algorithm.
Cindy Krum also had her questions for Splitt, asking the difference between featured snippets and passages ranking. Splitt answered that internally featured snippets are from a separate system.
These featured snippets will take “self-contained” answers and then put them into an “instant answer”, which is a search query that does not require in-depth answers. Such questions can be answered with a few words or sentences. Therefore, users do not need to click the link to read more and find the answers that they need.
On the other hand, a passages type result is a webpage that does not necessarily have a concise answer to the question. They are what SEOs call “blue links” type search results. He also emphasised that featured snippets and passages ranking are two very different systems.
Businesses and website owners should always be updated when it comes to changes in Google algorithms. Staying up-to-date with the latest news in the SEO industry allows businesses to stay ahead of their competitors.
When working with Position1SEO, you can rest assured that we will come up with effective, tailor-made SEO content strategies for your website. We will make sure to write relevant content that will attract more website users and optimise your webpages to help them achieve higher rankings on the search engine results pages.
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