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Google Deduplication On Top Stories From Web Search Results

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Google Deduplication On Top Stories From Web Search Results

We know Google has deduplication efforts for when a featured snippet is displayed so that it might remove the snippet from the main web results. Google may do the same, in some cases, for when a URL is listed in the top stories section and then not show it in the main web results.

Google in some cases may be removing the web search result snippet when it shows that same result in the top stories section of the Google search results.

Update: Here is how deduping works for top stories:

Rest of the story continued but the update is in the tweet above.

Danny Sullivan of Google said this on Twitter after a complaint from The Verge. Danny said “it’s showing in Top Stories, it is getting deduplicated from the rest of the page. Deduplication can often be useful. Doing this search in the way that user might by using solution-seeking terms rather than unusual terms in the headline, there you are at the top in Top Stories plus deduplicating means there’s more variety from other publications. In searches like that, our systems also are going to generally seek to show the most helpful, reliable info they can. That’s why you don’t see a lot of duplicates of your article showing. Duplicates certainly exist, but it isn’t that helpful to show them. That leads to headline-oriented searches. As I said before, that’s super common among authors. I used to do it all the time, myself. But headline searches contain typically contain a lot of terms, so our systems shift to return pages that have those terms. his means authors are more likely to find duplicates, even though for typical searches that readers would do, these are unlikely to appear. But our deduplication feature may still kick in even for these, as was happening in this case. As I said, deduplication can be helpful. But we also understand the concern this might be raising. We’ve been doing this with Top Stories since last May, but we’re going to revisit this to see if we should continue or perhaps make other changes. Also, I’m still checking, but I believe this deduplication is especially unique in that it only happens with Top Stories if there’s a single story shown or perhaps only for the very first story shown.”

So you can see, Danny is giving this as an excuse for why other publications are in the web results and not The Verge for that query. But as you can also see, he seems to explain that sometimes it does not work this way.

The interesting part is it does seem that Google is indeed deduping here when it comes to top stories.

The funny thing, hours before this, News SEO Barry Adams did a whole Twitter thread on this:

So I pointed out to Barry Adams the tweet from Danny and his response:

So I did some sample searches and Google does seem to remove a recent story from this site from the top stories and show it in web results, and at the same time, remove those stories in top stories from the web results. Notice SER is not in top stories here but is in the web results and at the same time SEL and SEJ is in the top stories but not in the web results (click to enlarge):

click for full size

But yes, the story does show in the news tab:

click for full size

But sometimes Google is not deduplicating these top stories, a query for [the hidden resignation] shows the Business Insider story in top stories in some browsers twice and some once (thanks Glenn Gabe for the query and discussing it with me):

Deduped:

click for full size

Not Deduped:

click for full size

Here is another example from Glenn:

So it is not clear when and why Google might deduplicate a URL from showing in web search when it also shows in top stories. It might be a timing issue or something else.

Danny Sullivan did say “Also, I’m still checking, but I believe this deduplication is especially unique in that it only happens with Top Stories if there’s a single story shown or perhaps only for the very first story shown.”

We hope to get some clarity soon.

Forum discussion at Twitter.




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Daily Search Forum Recap: May 21, 2024

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Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.


Google’s CEO, Sunda Pichai, spoke about AI Overviews killing the web, small publishers dying and not giving us Search Console data (well, kinda). The Google site reputation abuse policy also applies to Google Discover. Google AI Overview colors have nothing to do with the confidence of the answer. Google about source knowledge panels get graphical. Google also is rolling out a more graphical and richer search results interface. Google Marketing Live was this afternoon, more on that tomorrow… I am going to try publishing the newsletter earlier in the day (see how you like it).


Search Engine Roundtable Stories:


  • Google’s Sundar Pichai On AI Overviews Killing Web, Smaller Publishers & Search Console Data


    Nilay Patel, Editor-In-Chief of The Verge interviewed Sunday Pichai, CEO of Google, at Google I/O and the 40 minute interview released yesterday dug into a lot of the concerns we have been covering here. This includes how AI Overviews may kill the web, how smaller/indepdent publishers are dying and if we can get data in Search Console.

  • Google Rolling Out More Graphical & Richer Search Results


    Rajan Patel, the VP of Engineering at Google leading the Search experiences, wrote that Google is rolling out a more graphical results interface that go “beyond visual matches to include things like more links and facts from Knowledge Graph as well as AI Overviews.”


  • PSA: Site Reputation Abuse Policy Also Applies To Google Discover


    Just a PSA – the newish Google site reputation abuse policy not only applies to Google Search but also applies to Google Discover. Google updated the Discover content policies a while back to add a line that reads, “Publishers should be aware of the new site reputation abuse policy that becomes effective as of May 5, 2024.”


  • Google Adds Visuals To About Source Knowledge Panels


    December 2022, Google began showing “About this” site under some search result snippets, when the intent of the query was to learn more about that brand. It was a pretty sparse textual box that has more details about the source. Now, Google is testing showing this information in a more graphical user interface.



  • Google AI Overviews Colors Do Not Indicate Confidence Of Response


    Google’s John Mueller said the colors that Google selects for the AI Overviews has no indication of the confidence of the response. Back when SGE (old name for AI Overviews), Google told me the color had more to do with the journey but they were just fun.





  • Android Shrubbery Statue


    Here is an Android statue at the Google London office that is covered in shrubbery. This is a super green and plant-like Android figurine.

Other Great Search Threads:

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:

Analytics

Industry & Business

Links & Content Marketing

Local & Maps

Mobile & Voice

SEO

PPC

Search Features

Other Search

Feedback:


Have feedback on this daily recap; let me know on Twitter @rustybrick or @seroundtable, on Threads, Mastodon and Bluesky and you can follow us on Facebook and on Google News and make sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts or just contact us the old fashion way.



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Daily Search Forum Recap: May 20, 2024

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Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.


Google said it is working on surfacing more heartful helpful content, after no sites seemed to have recovered from the last helpful content update. Danny Sullivan said he speaks directly to engineers working on Google Search. Google doesn’t let you turn off AI Overviews, but Bing lets you turn off its AI responses. Google Notes says it is ending the labs feature soon but Google may bring comments to notes.


Search Engine Roundtable Stories:


  • Google Working On Surfacing More Content That Comes From The Heart


    Last week we reported how Danny Sullivan, Google’s Search Liaison, said how they are looking for ways to better promote sites that were hit by that helpful content update in September. Now, over the weekend, John Mueller from Google added, “the team working on this is explictly evaluating how sites can / will improve in Search for the next update.”

  • Bing Lets You Turn Off AI Responses But Google Doesn’t Let You Turn Off AI Overviews


    Google has been rolling out AI Overviews in its search results since last week and more and more searchers are super unhappy that there is no way to turn off the AI Overviews. Michael Schechter, a Vice President at Microsoft, shared a screenshot in Bing, on how you can turn off Copilot responses in Bing Search with the click of a button.

  • Danny Sullivan: We Speak Directly To Engineers Working On Google Ranking Systems


    Google was asked where Google’s Danny Sullivan and John Mueller get their information from when responding to search and ranking-related questions. Sullivan responded directly to the engineers who code those ranking systems at Google.


  • Google Says Notes On Search Now Ends Soon


    Google has updated the Google Search Labs to say that Notes on Search now “ends soon.” As a reminder, last November Google rolled out as a labs the Notes feature in Google Search and Google Discover.

  • Comments To Notes In Google Search?


    Google may be bringing comments to the Notes on Google Search (and Discover) feature. Notes on Search came last November as a labs feature in Google Search and Google Discover. Google recently tested a new button for the notes feature in Search. Now Google may be testing comments on Notes.

  • NYC Bring Your Child To Work Day At Google NYC


    Google held its annual bring your child to work day at the Google New York City office. This was back in late April and I found some cute photos of kids at Google doing face painting, gaming, balloons and more.

Other Great Search Threads:

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:

Analytics

Industry & Business

Links & Content Marketing

Local & Maps

Mobile & Voice

SEO

PPC

Search Features

Other Search

Feedback:


Have feedback on this daily recap; let me know on Twitter @rustybrick or @seroundtable, on Threads, Mastodon and Bluesky and you can follow us on Facebook and on Google News and make sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts or just contact us the old fashion way.



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Google AI Overviews, Ranking Volatility, Web Filter, Google Ads AI Summaries & More

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For the original iTunes version, click here.

Google announced they are rolling out AI Overviews in the US and many searchers want to turn it off, and some content creators want to opt out of them. Google also announced new AI search features that will roll out soon. OpenAI showed off their GPT-4o 24 hours before Google I/O and it was amazing. Google search results volatility has been super hearted all week long. Google confirmed it deindexed vast amounts of URLs in February. Google lifted some of the site reputation abuse manual actions earlier this week. Google said sites hit by the helpful content update can see a lift after the next core update. Google has read our feedback on our issues with search quality and changes may come, maybe. Google also might give us an automated action viewer in Search Console. Google also rolled out a web filter to see only text links in the search results. Google lowered the search ranking of some deepfake porn sites. Google locked down the complaint forum thread around images not showing in the search result snippets. Google may have a new local ranking signal, service areas. Google Local Service Ads tests messaging multiple businesses at once. Google Ads AI summaries are going live for some advertisers. Google Ads changed the functionality for suspended accounts. Google AdSense will not change the minimum reporting thresholds for channels. That was the search news this week at the Search Engine Roundtable.

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Search Topics of Discussion:

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