Google announced that MUM will be integrated into some searches on Google Search. Google’s search results page is undergoing changes that will introduce new ways to discover and explore topics for certain searches.
This new way of searching expands on the old way of searching for answers and introduce a more intuitive way to explore topics.
Google will in the coming months guide users down topic paths in a redesigned search experience for some searches that will be more visual.
One of these changes is apparently already in search.
The Google MUM Algorithm
Earlier in 2021 Google introduced a new search algorithm that can search across languages and with images to find answers to complex questions.
This algorithm is called MUM, which is short for Multitask Unified Model.
The feature that Google is running with most is the ability to search with images instead of just text.
Google has already announced the integration of MUM into their Lens app in the coming months.
How Google MUM Will Change Search
The MUM algorithm will be introduced into Google Search and it will bring dramatic changes to the whole idea of what search means.
Users currently search for answers. But this new way of searching will help users explore more complex tasks while also introducing an entirely different way of presenting answers, particularly with images.
The goal for these changes is to make searching more intuitive.
Google Search Redesign
Google characterized this change as a redesign of search and that’s exactly what it is.
This new version of search takes three big steps away from the old ten blue links search engine.
MUM is Changing Search in Three Important Ways:
- Things to know
- Topic zoom
- Visually browsable search results
Related: Google MUM is Coming to Lens
What is Google’s Things to Know?
The “things to know” feature incorporates Google MUM to understand all the ways users explore a topic. Google provides the example of the keyword phrase, “acrylic painting.”
Google notes that there are over 350 topics associated to that keyword phrase.
The “things to know” feature will identify the most relevant or popular “paths” that users take in exploring that topic and surface more website content that relates to that.
So rather than waiting for users to conduct follow up searches, Google search will anticipate those related topics and surface the content.
This is how this new search feature works:
“For example, we can identify more than 350 topics related to acrylic painting, and help you find the right path to take.”
Video Animation of “Things to Know” Feature
Topic Exploration in Google Search
The second new feature is referred to as Topic Zoom. This feature allows a searcher to jump in and out of related topics.
A searcher can broaden the topic or zoom in to a more granular sub-topic.
The third new MUM feature is one that appears to be available now in Google Search.
Visual Exploration is a new way visual way to explore a topic.
This new feature will not show up for all searches.
It is restricted to searchers where the user intent is to find inspiration.
Google explains it like this:
“This new visual results page is designed for searches that are looking for inspiration, like “Halloween decorating ideas” or “indoor vertical garden ideas,” and you can try it today.”
How Google MUM and AI Are Changing Search
These new ways of searching appear to be designed to help searchers discover more websites and more web pages on the web.
Rather than limit users to the ten blue links, Google is making it easier for searchers to explore topics on many more websites than the old ten blue links way.
This should be good news for publishers.
How do you SEO for this? I suspect that nothing is going to change on Google’s end as far as search optimization.
The traditional way of doing things where title tags and headings are used for dumping high traffic keywords in the Keyword-1, Keyword 2 style of SEO may have to be revisited, but that’s been the case for several years.
It may be useful to follow Google’s guidelines for titles and headings by using them to actually describe what the web page and the web page sections are about.
Making a web page easy to understand is one of the core attributes of good SEO.