What is Google Discover and How to Leverage It?

What is Google Discover and How to Leverage It?

In 2018, Google launched a ‘queryless’ search initiative called Google Discover — and it changed the game for digital marketers. If you haven’t been taking advantage of it in your digital marketing, read this. We lay down everything you need to know about Google Discover and how you can use it to upscale your digital marketing in the Philippines. 


Google has consistently been updating its features and creating new ones — all in an effort to boost user experience. In 2018, it launched a new feature known as Google Discover, which gave websites the benefit of mobile traffic spikes. 


If you haven’t been using it as part of your digital marketing in the Philippines, or much less have heard of the new feature, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’re letting you in on Google Discover and how you can leverage it to upscale your digital marketing strategies


What is Google Discover and How Does It Work? 

In 2018, Google launched a new feature called Google Feed, which it later renamed to what we now know as Google Discover. It functions as a personalized feed that shows users content that they may be interested in, without them having to input a query. 


When a user opens the Google app or the page on their mobile browsers, they immediately see featured content that Google has deemed relevant to them, based on their search algorithms and user journey. This type of ‘queryless’ search is part of Google’s initiative to highlight the most relevant content for each user. 


Convincing Statistics on Google Discover and User Interaction

In case knowing what Google Discover is isn’t enough to convince you to take advantage of it, we found the need to show you these statistics. Search Engine Journal analyzed 11,000 URLs featured in Google Discover over a course of 12 months. 


The findings showed that of the 11,000 URLs, 46% were news sites, 44% were e-commerce sites, 7% were entertainment sites, 2% were from travel sites, and 1% included content from B2B, automotive, education, finance, and health industries. 


When it came down to content type, Google Discover featured blog posts more than other content types. 39% of blogs from e-commerce sites and 83% from entertainment sites were indexed by Google, which is a significantly high percentage compared to other content types, such as video and product landing pages


This goes to show that Google deems value-adding content to be relevant to targeted audiences and features blogs in an interest-focused approach. Users are responding well to featured content in Google Discover, with featured sites experiencing an 11% click-through rate, which is higher than in traditional search. 


How to Leverage Google Discover for Your Digital Marketing 

The advent of Google Discover and its ‘queryless’ search is game-changing for digital marketers. Why? Because unlike in traditional search where you and your audience connect through queries and specific keywords, Google Discover allows your content to be featured based solely on relevance and interest. 


The feature can show your content to your target audience before they even realize that they are looking for it. And because of the mechanism by which Google Discover chooses content to feature, you also get the benefit of your articles being featured to users who fit your ideal customer persona. 


But here’s the catch. Optimizing your articles for Google Discover can be tricky because SEO practices that were gods in traditional search are suddenly irrelevant in a ‘queryless’ system. But although limited, there are still things you can do to increase your chances of appearing on Google Discover.


1. Prioritize a mobile-first web design. 

Google Discover only functions on mobile devices, so naturally, it will only feature web pages that are mobile-friendly. Make sure that your website is accessible and optimized for mobile — from your home page to specific blog posts across your site.


2.Create focused, intentional, relevant, and interesting content.

In Google Discover, the connection point between you and your audience is based on interest. For example, skincare articles will likely be featured on the feeds of those interested in skincare and beauty, while blogs about automobiles will be visible to gearheads and car enthusiasts. 

There lies the importance of creating content that is interest-focused. Write about things that are aligned with your brand, but also resonate with your audience. This is the beauty of ‘queryless’ search. Without the pressure of search volume and keyword optimization, you have more liberty to explore topics that you and your audience are most passionate about. 


3. Add high-quality images 

Google Discover features photos along with the blog title and a short snippet, all arranged in a neat Discover card. Data reveals that cards with large, high-quality images increased in click-through rate by 5%. It’s recommended that your blogs have images that are at least 1,200 pixels wide. 


4. Consider video marketing on YouTube 

Although blog posts are the most dominantly featured content type, YouTube is also getting a fair share of the spotlight. The majority of video content that appears on Google Discover is hosted by YouTube, which calls for a revisit of your video marketing strategy

Consider optimizing your YouTube channel and creating engaging videos to increase your brand presence on Google Discover. 


Take Advantage of Queryless Search

While SEO best practices are still very much crucial to help you get leverage in traditional search, Google Discover has presented you with more opportunities to increase your web traffic. It’s high time for you to take advantage of this mobile feature that could change the course of your digital marketing for the better.


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