The Future of Google Search
5 minutes

The Future of Google Search

Google search has transformed significantly since it was created back in 1998. Initially a straightforward tool for retrieving web page results based on keyword queries, Google has evolved into a sophisticated search engine with advanced algorithms, machine learning, and artificial intelligence capabilities. 

Looking back at the search engine’s 25 year history has us wondering – how far will Google evolve in another two decades? Google’s core philosophy is to provide its users with the exact information they want, so its evolution depends entirely on our search behaviours.

 

Contents

  1. How is user behaviour changing in search?
  2. What will the future of Google search look like?
    a) Convenience before locality
    b) VR-friendly sites
    c) Further infinite scroll
    d) More misinformation tactics
    e) Less ad-heavy
    f) Immerse-first approach
    g) Lifespan as a ranking factor
    h) Return of Payday

 

With technology constantly evolving and an increasing reliance on digital platforms, user behaviour in search has seen a range of notable shifts. 

The demand for instant information has intensified, leading to a preference for more conversational and long-tail queries. Users no longer want to scroll through huge amounts of content to find what they’re looking for – they want their query answered quickly, in a way that’s simple and digestible. As a result, featured snippets and video content has been favoured by Google in recent years. 

The prevalence of mobile devices, as well as voice-activated assistants such as Siri and Alexa, have made on-the-go searches more popular, further influencing the need for concise and easily digestible information.

What’s more, users now expect highly personalised and contextually relevant results, prompting search engines to prioritise user intent and deliver tailored content. Users are also becoming more and more aware of marketing ploys and black hat SEO tactics, putting a greater emphasis on trustworthiness, credibility and authenticity.

 

Google 2025

 

What will the future of Google search look like?

Google has changed the way it presents its search results regularly throughout the past twenty years, but its key goal has always remained the same: to put users first. It’s likely that this will continue well into the future. However, as users’ search behaviours continue to evolve, so will the search results. 

To find out what the future of Google search will look like, our experts analysed every major Google update from the past twenty years to spot common themes, along with an analysis of technology advancements. Our SEO specialists were then able to use everything we know about SEO to predict what Google might look like in 2050:

 

1) Convenience before locality

The future of Google is likely to prioritise convenience over locality, surpassing the 2014 Pigeon update’s focus on local search. Users can expect real-time information on product availability in local stores and live table counts in restaurants for more informed decision-making. This shift reflects the increasing demand for immediacy and personalised, accurate data.

 

2) VR-friendly sites 

As Google has prioritised mobile-friendliness in the past, there’s a possibility that the search engine may now encourage websites to embrace VR (Virtual Reality)-friendly design. This shift would involve optimising sites for immersive experiences, incorporating elements like 360-degree visuals and interactive interfaces. With the increasing prevalence of virtual reality technologies, websites that seamlessly integrate with VR could gain favour in search rankings, reflecting Google’s commitment to staying ahead.

 

3) Further infinite scroll

Expanding on the current trend of infinite scroll, future iterations may focus on optimising user speed and efficiency. The future of Google search could see an interface similar to TikTok, where on mobile devices, users can swiftly swipe through concise, specific pieces of information. This evolution caters to the modern user’s desire for instant, engaging content exploration without traditional page navigation, aligning with evolving preferences in digital interactions.

 

4) More misinformation tactics

In anticipation of addressing the persistent challenge of misinformation, Google may adopt more advanced strategies to mitigate its impact. Beyond current efforts, the search engine might implement features that involve flagging or fact-checking potentially misinformed content. This proactive approach would serve as a protective measure, alerting users to exercise caution when engaging with information that could be misleading or inaccurate.

 

5) Less ad-heavy

Similar to the Page Layout update of 2012 that penalised sites for static ad content, there could be a renewed focus on penalising news platforms featuring excessive ads, especially those presented in video or GIF-like formats that negatively impact readability and overall user experience. By discouraging overwhelming advertising practices, Google could ensure that content remains accessible and digestible without compromising on quality.

 

6) Immerse-first approach

Embracing an immersive-first approach, Google might introduce VR features allowing users to virtually explore various environments like restaurants and shops. This immersive experience would enable users to make more informed decisions about where to spend their time, offering a preview before any physical commitment.

 

7) Lifespan as a ranking factor

Given the rapid emergence and disappearance of brands online, Google might introduce lifespan as a ranking factor. This would involve evaluating the longevity and sustained relevance of a brand’s online presence, emphasising enduring value and prioritising brands with a more substantial and lasting digital footprint.

 

8) Return of Payday

With the surge in crypto and risky blockchain investments, Google might reintroduce an updated version of its 2013 Payday update. This new iteration could employ advanced algorithms and machine learning to better detect and combat deceptive financial schemes. The goal would be to safeguard users from fraudulent practices and ensure search results prioritise trustworthy information.

 

There are so many possibilities when it comes to the future of Google and while we may not be able to predict them all, having an understanding of user search behaviours can help us stay ahead of the curve. Remember, make pages for users, not search engines. 

 

Read our guide on SEO content marketing to find out more.