what is google smith algorithm

What is the Google SMITH Algorithm?

What is the Google SMITH Algorithm? – In this article I am writing about the recently-unveiled Google SMITH algorithm.

You will learn what the Google SMITH algorithm is, why it’s important for SEO and how it compares to BERT, the so-far more popular algorithm by Google.

If you need help with improving the rankings for your Wix website, please feel free to drop us a line.

What is the Google SMITH Algorithm?

SMITH, or Siamese Multi-depth Transformer-based Hierarchical, is an encoder mentioned in the research paper Beyond 512 Tokens: Siamese Multi-depth Transformer-based
Hierarchical Encoder for Long-Form Document Matching, published by Google on 13th October 2020.

In brief, it’s a transformer based hierarchical encoder aiming at improving the quality of text-matching between long-form contents.

Why is the Google SMITH Algorithm Important?

By matching long-form texts, SMITH can bring improvements in areas such as news recommendations, related article recommendations and document clustering.

What’s the Difference between Google SMITH and BERT?

BERT, which stands for Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers, is the most recent and well-known search algorithm by Google.

Although BERT has so far done a great job at text-matching, it is limited to short text like a few sentences or one paragraph. SMITH aims at expanding on that:

Comparing to BERT based baselines, our model is able to increase maximum input text length from 512 to 2048

Was the SMITH Algorithm Used in Google December 2020 Core Update?

It’s not clear whether this was the case or not. However, it’s worth noting that some SEO experts were confused about the logic behind the update (source: searchenginejournal.com):

Based on what I’ve seen in online discussions, people are confused and frustrated. They don’t really know what happened and few seem to have any theories as to why things changed.

In a general sense, it feels to me like Google rewrote a number of its quality policy enforcement algorithms – Michael Martinez, SEOTheory

Is Google Using the SMITH Algorithm?

According to a tweet exchange between Danny Sullivan from Google and Barry Schwartz, Google SMITH is not currently live:

This is also confirmed by Barry in a recent video:

What is the Google SMITH Algorithm: Sources



About Pasquale Mellone

Pasquale is Founder at Increasily.com, a digital strategy agency based in Dublin, Ireland; and Co-Founder at luxury ecommerce marketplace Thesidebe.com. Pasquale has +15 years of experience in Digital Marketing and Account Management. He currently lives in Dublin with his wife, stepdaughter and cat.

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