New EU regulations compel more transparency for search rankings

In the guidelines, the most important factors are announced by Google, Amazon.

Attempts to redesign Google search results and improve the visibility of Google searches have resulted in an industry. The EU now wants to make it easier for non-SEO professionals, especially small businesses, to manage search rankings.

The guidelines are the basis of the regulation of 2019. This effort is contained in the regulatory guidelines announced in Europe yesterday. They ask search engines, “online brokerage services” (e.g. markets), and travel websites to disclose and update ranking factors when a significant algorithmic change occurs. This extends to the impact of payments and advertising on organic valuations.

Its stated goal is “to improve predictability and help users improve the presentation of their products and services or a feature of those products and services”. In other words, the EU wants to demystify research and market rankings for marketers, marketers, and publishers.

The guidelines were developed to support ‘Article 5 of Regulation (EU) 2019/1150 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2019, to promote fairness and transparency for business users of online mediation services’. They seem to focus primarily on the results of the product but are broadly and appropriately written.

Public description in plain language. According to the guidelines, it is not legally binding but is intended to facilitate ‘compliance’ with Article 5, which states (in the relevant section): ‘Online search engine providers must define the most important parameters that are individually or collectively important. ‘ Determine the ranking and relative importance of the main parameters by filling in an easy and publicly available description in a clear and understandable language on the online search engines of these providers.

These assessment factors can be presented at several points, although the guidelines recommend a single point of contact (for example on the user panel) to refer to the availability of all relevant information tools to explain the transparency of the score. In any case, the information cannot be buried in terms and conditions; it should be found in an easily accessible place on the web page of the online search engine. This may be an area that does not require users to log in or register to read the description.

As indicated, the classification parameters should be presented “in clear and comprehensible language”, although in some cases it may be more technical for “professional users”.

The classification variables should be reported, but not the algorithms. Article 5 and the guidelines also stipulate that search engines and markets “shall not disclose algorithms or information that can reasonably be considered misleading or harmful to consumers as a result of the manipulation of results”.

Therefore, they should summarize the most important variables or considerations that determine the classification, but not the algorithms themselves. However, search engines and markets need to describe the “relative importance” of important parameters.

Some hypothetical classification parameters provided by the EU include:

• loading speed of pages

• Security (eg HTTPS)

• Images (eg type, number, quality)

• Consumer ratings (e.g. number, rating, recent)

• Interaction between retailer and consumer (eg questions, answers, answers)

History of dispute resolution (eg number of consumer complaints, solutions found)

• Quality indicators in the field (eg star rating of hotels, delivery performance, extent to which places, brands, etc. are known or known in the community)

• For example, data protection legislation. based on an app store review of the app’s privacy policy

• Web accessibility

• Quality of the content

• Keyword label

• Accuracy and relevance of the title

• Concise answers, such as what products or services are offered or in answer to questions

Why should we care?

 Although the purpose of Article 5 and the accompanying guidelines is to achieve more fairness and transparency in research and digital markets, it is not yet clear how this will happen in practice. A model that meets the requirements may be similar to what Google does in the field, with advice on how to improve visibility and rankings.

However, the guidelines also require that the rankings of the market and search engines be ranked effectively and that the relative importance be identified – in other words, page service is more important than, for example, rankings. Although most reviews used by Google are known and openly discussed, it can be important to disclose their hierarchical importance to marketers and their customers.

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