Last Updated on September 27, 2021 by Chris
We've grown accustomed to Google Search in its current form for, well, years.
But changes are a brewing, and Google Search may be looking a whole lot different in the near future.
Google Is Working On “Conversational Search”
Sometimes, as a blogger or content creator, you see a headline about the changes that Google is planning on making, and you have an immediate urge to put your fingers in your ears, close your eyes, and pretend it's not happening.
But, alas, it is, and whether we like it or not, the best way that we can be prepared for what they have in the works, is to understand what they're working on.
And that's why we're here, after all.
What's This About Changes to Google Search?
In late May, Google held their I/O developer conference, and they announced all sorts of updates. They announced what they're calling “Google Workspace” which is essentially a one stop shop to access all their productivity and collaboration tools (Sheets, Docs, Slides etc.), but the big news for bloggers was what they announced around Google Search.
In short, Google seems very intent on making Google Search into a platform where you're almost having “conversations.”
They want to use AI to make Google Search more knowledgeable as to what it is you're exactly looking for, and then to respond in a “talkative” and “natural” sort of way, almost to mimic how'd you'd speak to friends.
How Does Google Plan to Accomplish This?
For now, what we know is that they've developed two tools to try to make their dreams a reality.
- LaMDA: LaMDA (or the Language Model for Dialogue Applications) basically is the tool they're using to help AI bots carefully mimic human interaction and conversation. They're calling it their “breakthrough conversation technology.” They want to “unlock more natural ways of interacting with technology.”
- MUM: MUM (or the Multitask Unified Model) is basically the operating system they're trying to utilize to help AI know what people are really asking. The idea is that you'd ask a different question to an expert than you would Google, just because you know Google's limitations. They want to be able to start to answer, almost conversationally, those more in-depth questions. The example they gave is being able to ask, after you'd hiked Mt. Adams, what you should do differently to prepare to hike Mt. Fuji.
How this will affect bloggers remains to be seen. All we know right now is that Google is intent on experimenting with seeing if they can improve on simply just providing search results, and instead shifting toward a more chat friendly approach.
That being said, they make enormous revenue off people placing ads in Search, so we don't think there's cause to panic, it's more about watching how this progresses, so we can not only adapt, but take advantage of this shift.
As always, we'll keep our eye on this for you.