New research suggests that Google will soon be ranking content in search results based on the accuracy of the content, not just relevant links and keywords.

Currently, search results appear as a result of a complex combination of keywords and links to other websites. For example, the more linked a page is to other sources on the web, the more likely it has quality information on it. However, this technique fails to consider the accuracy of the information. If many people link to the page, it can be sit at the top of the profile even though the content is all wrong and not very useful.

The new page rank technique will include a feature called the “Knowledge-Based Trust Score,” which provides a score based on the number of incorrect facts found within a page. It does this by looking up the content and comparing to the Google’s Knowledge Vault – the search engine’s store of facts pulled off the Internet over time. The content found in this vault is what is broadly agreed upon by several sources online and is considered the proxy for truth. So if any content contradicts the information in the Vault, it can slide down in search rankings.

The new search technique of ranking pages is Google’s continued effort to rank quality content. For the last few years, Google has been increasingly updating its search algorithms for both desktop searches and mobile to list websites with high-quality content and a mobile-friendly interface. Just last November, Google release mobile-friendly notions that let users know whether a website is mobile-friendly or not next to website link in mobile search results. According to Google Webmaster Guidelines, web masters should focus on “providing visitors with the information they’re looking for,” and goes on to say:

Provide high-quality content on your pages, especially your homepage. This is the single most important thing to do. If your pages contain useful information, their content will attract many visitors and entice webmasters to link to your site. In creating a helpful, information-rich site, write pages that clearly and accurately describe your topic. Think about the words users would type to find your pages and include those words on your site.

If implemented, this new search technique would mean that popular sources that regularly get the facts wrong or do not provide high-quality could fall in search rankings. The system is not yet implemented but could be in the near future. Nevertheless, it’s an interesting concept that Google is considering in order to separate the good web content from the bad and the truth from the flaw.

Sources: New Scientist