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    UB Metrics and SEO


    Most everyone who works in a competitive SEO environment knows Google often takes liberties with the truth (lies) when discussing how their algorithm works, so take this with a grain of salt:

    In 2017, the head of Google Brain, Nick Frost, said this at a conference:
    Google is now integrating machine learning into [the process of figuring out what the relationship between a search and the best page for that search is]. So then training models on when someone clicks on a page and stays on that page, when they go back or when they and trying to figure out exactly on that relationship.
    So does this make a strong case for Google using user behavior metrics as ranking signals.

    Comments on this post

    • matt1966 agrees : Good find!
    • JohnAimit : Please justify this claim
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    My original skepticism was that these technologies physically couldn't be created. Now I know that they are capable of building technology like this - seems like a no-brainer to me.

    I think it was you who shared Bing officially coming out, saying that they use user behavior as ranking signals, so... this probably means Google has been doing it for the past 10 years lol.

    I'm pleased that they do though. It's just another step towards encouraging webmasters to make quality websites which I'm all for!

    Also, please could you link to the source you found the quote above on?
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    Hi KP

    I foresee a good debate on this one. I am of the opinion, they do this to defuse the efforts to guess the algo's internal workings. They use such tactics to mislead to say the least. Being vague can have its' benefits !

    We have had many debates over the last couple of months about other metrics, (ctr comes to mind, LOL). Since finding out that Google uses Chrome ( has been verified ), for a large portion of their input data, it only makes sense that they would use dwell time, pogo-sticking, etc, etc. Most folks don't bother to read the fine print, so when they install Google Chrome, the general masses, (this is just my opinion), usually let Google collect the "Non-Personal Data", (as they call it). This gives Google a nice collection of user habits also a decided advantage when predicting what a searcher wants !

    It makes sense also when you consider that anyone using GSC / GA gets a report each month about how many folks requested directions to your business, visited the site, and last but definitely not the least, how many visitors called your business. If they can track that info, then they are tracking many metrics that folks consider "Trashy, noisy, and unreliable to say the least. This is nothing other than forensic analysis. I am a firm believer that they use this forensic information to "Design and Tweak" their Algo's.

    So Yes !

    I will add, this tho....
    They can be selective and discreet on when and how they sample the data. Unless any of us can duplicate the data pool they use, ie, chrome user data, our conclusions will be at best a guess of what is happening, albeit a good guess but still a guess.
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    Originally Posted by matt1966
    My original skepticism was that these technologies physically couldn't be created. Now I know that they are capable of building technology like this - seems like a no-brainer to me.

    I think it was you who shared Bing officially coming out, saying that they use user behavior as ranking signals, so... this probably means Google has been doing it for the past 10 years lol.

    I'm pleased that they do though. It's just another step towards encouraging webmasters to make quality websites which I'm all for!

    Also, please could you link to the source you found the quote above on?
    If you Google the quote you'l see it has been discussed at length, here's one source:
    https://www.seroundtable.com/google-...ngs-24441.html

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    • JohnAimit agrees : Check the Michael Martinez comments
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    Originally Posted by KnowOneSpecial
    Hi KP

    I foresee a good debate on this one. I am of the opinion, they do this to defuse the efforts to guess the algo's internal workings. They use such tactics to mislead to say the least.
    There's no doubt Google lies. They used to tell us that they did not use our search history to serve us results lol.

    But, you can't have it both ways. Either Google lies so believe what you want or Google does not lie, and therefore they use UB metrics in the ranking signals per above.

    Comments on this post

    • JohnAimit : Examples please! None so far...
    Last edited by KernelPanic; Apr 4th, 2018 at 03:16 PM.
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    Yes, Google is trying to have its' cake and eat it too !

    I was expecting John to jump in on this thread ... curious to see what his opinion of this is.
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    Originally Posted by KnowOneSpecial
    Yes, Google is trying to have its' cake and eat it too !

    I was expecting John to jump in on this thread
    The IT guy? I would like it also if he told us what he thought instead of what Google told him to think. After doing this for 21 years, I don't need to know what Google wants us to think

    Comments on this post

    • Test-ok agrees : If that ain't the truth.
    • KnowOneSpecial agrees : Yeah, I sometimes put Google in the same category as the Onion
    • JohnAimit : I'm a marketing guy. I've got 24 years experience.
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    Yep Google is much like our government they spout out what they want us to believe and not what's really going on.
    Your grain of salt is a perfect comment kp.
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    Originally Posted by matt1966
    I think it was you who shared Bing officially coming out, saying that they use user behavior as ranking signals
    Yep, here you go:
    By taking this deep approach to building your content, the page a visitor encounters will be viewed as an authority on the topic or item. Your goal should be that when a visitor lands on your page, the content answers all of their needs, encouraging their next action to remain with you. If your content does not encourage them to remain with you, they will leave. The search engines can get a sense of this by watching the dwell time. The time between when a user clicks on our search result and when they come back from your website tells a potential story. A minute or two is good as it can easily indicate the visitor consumed your content. Less than a couple of seconds can be viewed as a poor result. And while thatís not the only factor we review when helping to determine quality, itís a signal we watch.
    The argument that this article has been around for a while makes the case lots more than disproves it imo.

    It's like a flat earther, there's so much evidence yet they still deny, deny, deny while talking loud and waving their arms in the air lol
    Last edited by KernelPanic; Apr 8th, 2018 at 03:47 AM.
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    Here's a good read!

    Organic search rankings are heavily influenced by user behavior data. If you want to stay at the top of major search engine rankings and make your brand noticeable online, you’ve got to understand your users.
    Who's the guy making this crazy claim?
    He is a New York Times best selling author. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies. He was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 35 by the United Nations.
    Even a flat earther would have to admit the earth is round if they took a trip into outer space and saw it with their own eyes lol
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    Extended engagement can help your siteís organic visibility and rank, so you need to pay attention to the time-on-page metric for any content thatís not performing up to snuff.
    "Google has designed and patented a system in charge of collecting and processing user behavior data." Put simply, because Google is smart enough to know whether users like your website and content, it's now accounting for this in search rankings.
    So pretty much every online marketing professional believes the same, however, at the end of the day, even if you're the only person on the planet that still believes google does not use UB as a ranking signal, why would you not optimize and work to improve your time-on-site metrics? Too busy bolding your keywords? We're pushing up on the year 2020, no matter how much anyone screams, it's just not about keywords any longer

    Deal with it.
    Last edited by KernelPanic; Apr 8th, 2018 at 06:16 AM.
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    KP Quote: "Google has designed and patented a system in charge of collecting and processing user behavior data." Put simply, because Google is smart enough to know whether users like your website and content, it's now accounting for this in search rankings."

    Your link goes to an article that uses a ref. by Dan Petrovic dated Aug 2015. As G did not start to refute these engagement ranking signal claims until Mar 2016 don't you think this article is out of date?
    Last edited by JohnAimit; Apr 11th, 2018 at 03:24 AM.
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    In case folk thought I'd forgotten about answers to:

    • Who is Nick Frost?
    • What Google department does he head?
    • What is Google Brain?
    • What does it have to do with RankBrain?
    • Is there any other corroborating reference to N Frost at the Google Think Auto event in Sep 2017?


    I can't believe how hard it is to confirm info about such a widely discussed article...

    1. Who is Nick Frost, reported as Head Google Brain Toronto?

    So far I can only find a research assistant to Prof G Hinton with the name Nick Frost.

    No ref to a Nick Frost here:


    I've also put an email request into the company that the article author worked for (Mike Kilinski) to seek clarification.

    2. What is Google Brain

    I'd describe it as a G funded artificial intelligence "blue sky" research entity that includes Google full time staff, 12 month residency programs, visiting Uni faculty and interns.

    Ref: Google Brain Team

    Wikipedia Google Brain answer

    More to come...
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    Hi John Aimit

    Why is it so hard to believe that Google uses UB in the design of and tweaking of their Algo's ?? I find it to be totally believable. No one is claiming that these metrics are used "LIVE" in the final Algo, only in the design of those Algo's. As the below snippet says, used for validating only, not live search ! We find many such indicators that imply or state such. I myself have posted a few such posts here.

    I also firmly believe that, (here we go again) that Google uses CTR in the same capacity as the snippet below indicates, validation and quality control only, NOT LIVE SEARCH !!
    Let also not rehash CTR please ....

    Link for below snippet >>>> https://www.stonetemple.com/google-c...discover-pages

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    Feels like Mummy and Daddy are arguing lol. Although my opinion isn't as qualified as anybodies in this dicussion - To me, it just seems like a no-brainer.

    Why in the world would Google not use users behaviour as a ranking signal. If Bing do it (it's been confirmed), then if I was to place an educated guess, Google will also do it.

    Makes no sense not to. With all the advancements with AI, I should think it'll also become a stronger signal in time too.


    After a bit of digging,

    In a court case Google's former search quality chief, Udi Manber said:

    "The ranking itself is affected by the click data. If we discover that, for a particular query, hypothetically, 80 percent of people click on Result No. 2 and only 10 percent click on Result No. 1, after a while we figure probably Result 2 is the one people want. So we'll switch it."


    Edmond Lau, another search quality employee for Google said:

    "It's pretty clear that any reasonable search engine would use click data on their own results to feed back into ranking to improve the quality of search results. Infrequently clicked results should drop toward the bottom because they're less relevant, and frequently clicked results bubble toward the top."


    Pretty good article on the topic here: https://www.link-assistant.com/news/...r-and-seo.html

    Comments on this post

    • KernelPanic agrees
    Last edited by matt1966; Apr 11th, 2018 at 09:35 AM.
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