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Article

Google Medical Update: Why Is the Search Engine Decreasing Visibility of Health and Medical Information Websites?

Department of Informatics, University of Economics in Katowice, 40-287 Katowice, Poland
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(4), 1160; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17041160
Received: 31 December 2019 / Revised: 29 January 2020 / Accepted: 11 February 2020 / Published: 12 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Future of Healthcare: Telemedicine, Public eHealth, and Big Data)
The Google search engine answers many health and medical information queries every day. People have become used to searching for this type of information. This paper presents a study which examined the visibility of health and medical information websites. The purpose of this study was to find out why Google is decreasing the visibility of such websites and how to measure this decrease. Since August 2018, Google has been more rigorously rating these websites, since they can potentially impact people’s health. The method of the study was to collect data about the visibility of health and medical information websites in sequential time snapshots. Visibility consists of combined data of unique keywords, positions, and URL results. The sample under study was made up of 21 websites selected from 10 European countries. The findings reveal that in sequential time snapshots, search visibility decreased. The decrease was not dependent on the country or the language. The main reason why Google is decreasing the visibility of such websites is that they do not meet high ranking criteria. View Full-Text
Keywords: Google; medical update; health information websites; search visibility; search engine Google; medical update; health information websites; search visibility; search engine
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MDPI and ACS Style

Strzelecki, A. Google Medical Update: Why Is the Search Engine Decreasing Visibility of Health and Medical Information Websites? Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 1160. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17041160

AMA Style

Strzelecki A. Google Medical Update: Why Is the Search Engine Decreasing Visibility of Health and Medical Information Websites? International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(4):1160. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17041160

Chicago/Turabian Style

Strzelecki, Artur. 2020. "Google Medical Update: Why Is the Search Engine Decreasing Visibility of Health and Medical Information Websites?" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 4: 1160. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17041160

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