Google Ads to target content. What about Google search?

You can now target specific content on your site to be labelled as valuable, rich content to make the Google Ads more targetted and thus hopefully increasing your clickthroughs and leaving you with a big pile of cash. What I haven't figured out is why Google Search hasn't decided to come up with a search-agnostic way to weight the importance of content in a similar way. In doing so, Google searches have the potential to become more targeted. But by doing it in a search-agnostic way like rel="nofollow", you'd offer the same benefits with other search engines as well.

This would also have the added benefit of weighting links within content higher than links within navigation (although, I suspect Google already has algorithms to help determine this, as it is).

How could this be done? Either through HTML comments like it is with the Google Ads or through an element attribute (I'll leave it up to the experts to decide which one). In any case, Google has enough clout to pull this off and I hope they take the opportunity to do so.

Published November 19, 2005 · Updated September 14, 2006
Categorized as Other
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Ben Kennedy said on November 20, 2005

Wouldn't this just open the door to abuse by "search engine optimizers"? Then I could pepper my penis-enlargement site with display:hidden DIVs with content like "puppies, fun, windows, britney, recipes" that are marked for importance.

The difference here is that with the ads, the site operator has a vested interest in making his site accurate, functional and ingenuous -- both for the benefit of visitors, but also for himself. With general search, the malevolents have the goal to mislead and deceive.

Jonathan Snook said on November 20, 2005

But they can do that anyway. They can fill the page up with all those fun keywords. For regular sites, it'd eliminate the noise. Things like navigation and blogrolls that really have no relevance to the context of the page. In other words, it's not so much about making content more relevant but rather making the rest of it irrelevant.

Ben Kennedy said on November 20, 2005

I see your point. As you put it in the inverse, it does seem to make more sense than I first thought. Hmm.

Sorry, comments are closed for this post. If you have any further questions or comments, feel free to send them to me directly.