Sunday, February 9, 2014

Google is a Smart Missionary

Testimonies of The Christ are not found in the evidences of the world, but only in and through The Spirit of truth or the Holy Ghost.  This blog post has very little if any value spiritually and as a missionary I hesitate to write it with any missionary spin at all.  I find it interesting what my years in search engine optimization has taught me about the importance of quality content and authority when seeking to rank in google.  The sheer amount of #1-3 rankings The Church of Jesus Christ has for Christian keywords is unprecedented in my experience.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints ranks for over 60,000 top 20 keywords in Google. These top 20 rankings come from only two of The Church's top websites lds.org and mormon.org This huge success should be noted, as well in my opinion the question asked: Why does google.com seem to love the LDS digital presence? The Mormon Church owns and controls over 125 sites I quit counting.   I draw only from the two main sites of the church for the following numbers and ranking results as of February 9th 2014:


Keyword Ranking Keyword Ranking
Jesus christ 1 jesus christ videos 1
savior jesus christ 1 jesus christ lives 1
jesus christ is god the father 1 jesus christ scriptures 1
jesus christ is the son of god 1 jesus christ website 1
jesus christs teachings 1 jesus christ church 1
jesus christ is god the father 1 jesus christ atonement 1
jesus christs teachings 1 jesus christ our lord 1
jesus christ in the bible 1 jesus christ hymns 1
jesus christ power 1 jesus christ in gethsemane 1
jesus christ healer 1 jesus christ faith 1
jesus christ teaching 1
jesus christ is our savior 1
Jesus
jesus christ being baptized 1


The estimated cost of purchasing the same number of visitors from ad networks organically was $1,135,662 on LDS.org and $257,611 on Mormon.org in January 2014.  That means that it would have cost any organization 1.4 million dollars per month to buy the rankings that The Church has been "gifted" just because it's a trusted site authority for Christianity.   I was joking at lunch with a partner this last week that if I had this I would has used it on my mission.  Not the best way to win a bible bash I know.




















It may be interesting to note that just eliminating the wonderful (competitive) keywords for use in this post was difficult.  As a matter of fact I think with little analysis it would be amazing for someone to do an exhaustive search of all 60,000 keywords.  The Church ranks for many very competitive long and short tail keywords for example addiction programs, how to become a better teacher, and get out of debt.  










Google is a noun, but has become a verb because of their mission which "is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful".  We all use it.  When we want to know something we just"google it".   When I think of Google I think of an entire company dedicated to a good search experience.  It is a company that has almost completely dejunked the world's results. Leaving only what it sees as the most valuable and relevant results on top.

Google has surpassed Exxon Mobile to become the second most valuable company in the world with a market capitalization of about $391B.  Founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin met at Stanford University in 1995. By 1996, they had built a search engine (initially called BackRub) that used links to determine the importance of individual web pages.  Today Google prides itself for returning the most relevant search results to it's users.

Google writes of The Ten Things we Know:

  1. Focus on the user and all else will follow.
  2. It’s best to do one thing really, really well.
  3. Fast is better than slow.
  4. Democracy on the web works.
  5. You don’t need to be at your desk to need an answer.
  6. You can make money without doing evil.
  7. There’s always more information out there.
  8. The need for information crosses all borders.
  9. You can be serious without a suit.
  10. Great just isn't good enough.
So what is the point?  The point in my opinion is we have two very large organizations at the top of their game.  The one has a desire to serve it's users and serve up the most relevant content and omit any unnatural or bad content from reaching #1-10 in their search engine.  The other has a responsibility to not manipulate in any way anything it does.  Even the perception of deception is avoided at all costs. The Church has the hardest time keeping itself out of the cross hairs of the world.  I am convinced without any reservations that if any of the Churches websites were ever involved with anything unethical Google would wipe their rankings.  This to me is a testament of the honest and ever consistent message The Church produces.

Rankings surrounding Christianity are not easy to win #1 spots in.  These are phrases that as pointed out before are competitive and worth money.  As a matter of fact when researching the name Jesus Christ you will be asked to consider keywords less aggressive.  




There are 2.1 billion Christians in the world.  Christians have the largest of all religious populations on earth with 31.5%


The sheer fact that Christianity is at the top worldwide would make it okay for me if The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saint's were not picked to be #1 by Google.  The fact that the Church ranks #1 for almost all keywords desirable for a Christian church is incredible.  It is also incredible to be part of an organization on earth with such complete focus on The Savior and His mission proven not only in action but by robots with no emotion or agenda.  It's worldly evidence yes that google ranks the Church so high, but it's no joke in a worldly way that Google keeps The Church #1 either.  This means in no small way that The Church has the best of all things spiritually and temporally covered.