Google On Neural Matching vs RankBrain

Mar 22, 2019 • 8:50 am | comments (3) by twitter | Filed Under Google Search Engine
 

After I wrote up the what is neural matching, I got to thinking and decided to email Google a bunch of questions, which I published at Search Engine Land as Danny Sullivan posted the answers on Twitter via the @searchliaison account.

I love how Google summed it up:

  • RankBrain helps Google better relate pages to concepts.
  • Neural matching helps Google better relate words to searches.

Google said the Neural matching helps them better relate words to searches. Neural matching is an artificial intelligence based system that Google began using in 2018 primarily to understand how words are related to concepts. Google said it is "like a super-synonym system." Synonyms are words that are closely related to other words, Google said. For example, neural matching helps us understand that a search for "why does my TV look strange" is related to the concept of "the soap opera effect." We can then return pages about the soap opera effect, even if the exact words aren't used, Google said.

Whereas with RankBrain, Google said RankBrain is an AI-based system Google began using in 2016 to understand how pages are related to concepts. It means we can better return relevant pages even if they don’t contain the exact words used in a search, by understanding the page is related to other words & concepts.

Here is a bit more:

Does RankBrain and Neural matching work together? Kind of:

Here are the original tweets from Google:

So no, no real way to "optimize" for it like for RankBrain.

Forum discussion at Twitter.

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