Misspellings And Typos Lose Luster In Google

by mjtaylor on August 27, 2011

Google SERPs Now Correct User Queries

Misspellings have now become a liability for ranking in Google. In the past, webmasters often included frequently misspelled versions of popular queries for their pages in hopes that their pages would be returned for users who typed the misspelled term into the search bar.

In the past, Google presented the pages that were returned using the typo and the SERPs for the correctly spelled term was presented under a clickable link for “did you mean ….” But the Google Quality Team determined that pages that have misspelled words are more likely to be lower quality, and has taken steps to now show SERPs for the corrected term.

‘Did You Mean …’ Replaced by Corrected SERPs

In the video below, Google Software Engineer Mark Paskin, explains what Google did to improve the quality of its SERPs when users misspell queries:

So we thought about a different kind of interface that we call full page replacement and instead of ‘did you mean’ you’ll see at the top of your page “showing results for” and in the case that we made a mistake there’s another link, ‘search instead for’ and it has the query that you typed.

For example, where a user would have seen results like this:

SERPs showing old results in Google for amoxisillin

when a common antibiotic is mispelled, they now see this:

new SERPs for typos

Webmasters who have relied on typos and misspellings to drive traffic will probably experience much less success with that technique.

The video:

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