How did Google’s Bert update change SEO?

You may well be a marketing manger for a large online business, on the other hand you may well be a small business owner operating a business right here in Cardiff, and you may well be working on  improving the businesses SEO yourself.

In either case you will want to know what Google’s Bert update was, and also how it may change how you improve your businesses SEO.

After all there has been many Google updates over the years, such as the Google Hummingbird update, the Panda and the Penguin update, all of these were really important.

And now the Bert update, yet where there was a lot of conversation about the Google Panda update and the Google Penguin update, there has been less so about Google’s Bert update, so we thought we would ask our team at our SEO agency to say a few things about what Google’s Bert update is all about.

So without further ado, this blog post is all about the Bert update.

What was the “Bert update”?

Bert stands for “Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformer”- which is quite a mouthful, yet it’s important to understand what the Bert update means.

The Bert update basically allows Google to better understand the context of a question.

We will elaborate on this later, but just imagine this question for a second you are about to cook your dinner, you fancy a tasty curry so you as Google- “how do you make a chicken Madras?”

How do you make a chicken Madras- well to us humans that’s obviously someone who wants the ingredients and recipe for making a chicken madras curry.

And many search engines are now clever enough to know this, but here’s the thing, it wasn’t that long ago when people were being more exact when asking a query, so for example, they may just type “recipe for a chicken madras curry”- which is self-explanatory what the person wants.

Yet, on the other hand, asking “show me how to make a chicken Madras curry”, well that’s more informal, and almost as how you would speak to a human, so as more and more people are talking to Google as you would a human, well this is why the need for Bert has emerged, so Google can better understand what information the person needs.

AI and Google’s RankBrain

Artificial intelligence and SEO is nothing new, that’s because of Google’s RankBrain- however with that said, we think the Bert update is just another continuation of AI becoming more and more a part of Google’s algorithm.

We think that as people talk to Google as if they would a real human, Bert was needed so that the algorithm can answer the question accurately.

So for example, “what’s the weather going to be like today”?

Well, does this mean generally across the U.K, most probably not, the person who’s living in Cardiff Bay will want to know what the weather is going to be like in Cardiff, South Wales.

So it might well be that Google is using the Bert update so that it can answer the question much more accurately.


So, in a nutshell we think that the Bert update is all about understanding the context of a question better.

So for example, “what time does Cardiff City play tonight”-, if this sentence was taken literally, it would appear to the algorithm that the person mentions a capital city, and refers to an event that’s due to take place that night. But it might have confused Cardiff city with someone asking about the city and not the football team.

Yet, because of Google’s Knowledge Vault and understanding of entities, Google will know that “Cardiff City” is a football team, and “what time do they play tonight” would refer to what time does a match start.

So Google’s algorithm is therefore using Google’s Knowledge Vault, AI through RankBrain and also now the Bert update to better answer the question.

So, this is where Bert may help, this is so that Google’s algorithm can better understand the question.  

Voice search

As more and more people ask a question, rather than typing the question, we can see why Google needed Bert- that’s because the query, or as some SEO’s refer to the question as the “search string” is getting more complicated, as people talk to Google like they are talking to a real human.

How will this change SEO?

Well, do you know what, we don’t think by much, and why do we say that? Well we think the same old rules apply, businesses and seo agencies must still offer quality content marketing.

Quality content marketing + write for the user not the search engine

We think it’s important to remember this, that is seo company’s and businesses must offer quality content marketing.

And do not write just to try and improve your businesses SEO, no instead offer helpful advice.

If your business offers really good advice, then your website is more likely to be deemed more relevant for different queries.

So for example, let’s say you run a locksmiths, just as an example, and you publish blog posts about how you can improve the security of some ones home, by upgrading locks, then your business may receive more visitors.

The reason being is that if your website has quality content marketing, then your business is more likely to deemed more relevant when someone is asking a question about locks.

So our best advice, as a white hat SEO business is this, invest in high-quality, white hat content marketing.

How our marketing agency can help:

If your business requires a new website, or help with your organic seo, then why not call us?



We need to improve our local SEO, what are the most important areas to improve?

Okay, so you own a business right here within Cardiff, and you’re currently wondering well how can we improve our local SEO?

And you may have read a few articles, and you may have read that Google’s algorithm weighs up over 200 factors that’s when working out how strong your businesses seo is. So now you may well be at a loss as to where to start.

Well here at Adore we have a team that has a huge amount of knowledge on how to implement white hat seo, so we thought we would dedicate one article to explaining how businesses here in Cardiff can improve their search engine optimisation.

Here are some of the more important factors:

Content marketing

Let’s say you run a bakery, and you want to expand your bakery and start making wedding cakes.

So, you may hire a local SEO business for advice, and they say in order for your business to rank for “wedding cake makers Cardiff”- well your business needs to set-up a blog.

Then with the help of a white hat marketing company they may write blog posts for you, however the work bust be quality.

As quality content marketing, which explains more about your wedding cake business, then this can help to improve your company’s SEO.

So what we mean is that for your website to rank for certain terms, such as “wedding cakes” you must show that your website is an authority on the subject.

Now, this could be publishing guides on the various styles of wedding cakes, or it could be talking about the different sponges, icing, and how you source your organic ingredients.

But what you must do is offer useful information, so which questions do you get asked the most?

For example, you may get asked, “how long before my wedding do I need to place an order for you to make my wedding cake?”

And you may write a whole blog post to this, now if the work is good quality, Google’s algorithm, using Googlebot and crawling and indexing your website will know that over time you are an authority on wedding cakes.

So your rankings should improve, notice how we use the word “should”- well we use that with good reason, because so many businesses think that content marketing is just about writing 500 words or so, and mentioning a few times the word, or the phrase that you want to rank for, such as “wedding cake suppliers”- however, if the work is low-quality, then this wont improve your businesses seo, it could actually mean that your business goes down the ranks.

So what’s the solution?

Well, that’s simple write really high-quality content marketing, that your customers will find useful.

Business citations

Does your business have NAP (Name, address and phone number) information on your website? Does this NAP information then match your businesses citations? You should work with a white hat marketing company that can help to build business citations for your business.

What do we mean by this?

Well, as Googlebot crawls and indexes not just your website, but all the other websites, it will spot that your company is mentioned, then it will spot your businesses NAP information, which stands for name of your business, its address and your company’s phone number, now if say 100 citations all say the same thing, well guess what?

Google’s algorithm will have much greater confidence that your business is based at that location, and if done right, so in a white hat way, this could improve your company’s SEO.

Google My Business

Has your business got a Google My Business account all sorted? If your business has not, then you may wish to work with a digital marketing company to help set your business set up with an account.

Then your marketing company should make sure that the NAP information matches with your website, your Google My Business account and your businesses citations.

Here’s another top tip, all of your businesses NAP information should match, that’s to say your company’s address and phone number and business name should match your website, with what’s on your company’s citations, with what’s on your businesses Google My Business account.

If they don’t, then your SEO agency may state to you, that you have “conflicting business citations” which means that more time may needed to correct your businesses citations.

Partner with an SEO company

Within Cardiff there are many marketing companies, however with that said, many company’s hire Adore Online Marketing.

Many company’s hire us for one simple reason, we have consultants that have been implementing white hat seo for over 10 years.

So we can offer the following:

·        Business citations

·        Adding Schema to your website

·        Setting up a Google My Business account

·        Building backlinks

·        Writing Content Marketing

·        Building WordPress websites

White hat

All SEO work should be white hat.


So let’s say that your wedding cake business publishes a blog post once a week, within these blog posts your business mentions how to make different wedding cakes, and how to make different icings for the cake, such as vanilla icings.

These blog posts, which talk about how to make different cakes may be read around the entire world, and sometimes a reader may have their own blog.

The owner of the blog may decide to link to your work, and this is how backlinks can be built.

How we can help:

If you are looking for a white hat marketing company here within Cardiff, then why not call us, we can offer:

·        Content marketing

·        Link building

·        WordPress websites

·        White hat SEO

·        Organic SEO

·        We are a marketing agency within Cardiff

Things that you should think about when choosing an SEO agency

There are now so many marketing companies in Wales to choose from.

Some are branded as “digital marketing agencies”– which often means that they can offer a wide range of different services, ranging from web design, through to local seo.

However, with that said, more and more businesses are noticing that they need a specialist seo agency, like us.

Sometimes a business will choose a marketing agency that specialises in their industry, so for example, if you run a solicitor’s practice, then there are marketing agencies that just work with solicitors.

However, if you are looking for an marketing business that works with a wide range of different businesses, then how do you go about choosing which agency to use?

After all here in Cardiff there are so many to choose from, so it doesn’t matter if your business is based by Roath Park, or say Cardiff Castle, you are bound to find a local company that’s just a stone’s throw from where your business is.

Yet, we would always say the number one consideration is to work with a white hat company, and to make sure the work is of a very high-quality.

So, for example, let’s say you run an online business that sells men’s clothing, you will want to invest in quality SEO that will improve your business for a range of products, such as t-shirts, men’s trousers and shoes for example.

And your business should therefore partner with a white hat and respected marketing agency, like us. That’s to say one that will use white hat methods to improve your company’s organic rankings.


That’s to say the work must be white hat, that’s so the algorithm will deem the work as high-quality


This means that for a clothing retailer, often the business will want national SEO, which means that the business normally has to build high-quality backlinks.

And this is an area that so many marketing businesses get wrong, that’s to say they do not build quality backlinks, they sometimes build low-quality backlinks.

This can mean that the business incurs say a Google Penguin penalty. And often the business will not know about penalties until the website has been hit by one, so this is why you need to choose your next SEO business carefully.

#1 So, you have to make sure the work is white hat

You must ensure that your business only invests in high-quality white hat seo.

#2 Will the cost be affordable over the long-term?

There’s no point in opting for the most expensive quote, from the most expensive marketing company, that’s if the business cannot afford the SEO over the longer term.

So, for example, let’s say that you run a construction business here in Wales, and you specialise in building commercial buildings, such as offices and shops, as well as restaurants.

Now sometimes a business will make a presumption that if they invest in SEO, that sales will increase straightaway.

This is often not the case- that’s because organic SEO takes a long time normally to improve where the company ranks.

Now you may well be wondering well, why does it take a long time for organic SEO to work?

Well, its often due to the fact that your direct competitors, so for example all the other commercial construction companies, they may have been investing in SEO long before your business, so to catch up often requires quite a long time.

#3 Do you feel that you can work with the agency?

If the marketing agency does not answer e-mails quickly, or call you back then this is when many businesses switch SEO company’s. A good SEO company should send you regular updates and SEO reports.

#4 Are you obtaining SEO reports?

You should obtain regular SEO reports, we always say that these reports should detail:

·        Number of visitors

·        Bounce rate

·        Are you improving for your businesses chosen keywords?

·        So, for example, if you run a plumbing business, you may want to improve where you rank for “plumber + name of city”.

How we can help:

If you would like a quote for organic SEO, then why not call us?