The new Google search: MUM

December 10, 2021

Google MUM

MUM — these three letters stand for Multitask Unified Model. MUM is the new Google algorithm for capturing search queries. What is it all about? What is changing in Google search? And what impact will MUM have on search engine optimization and online marketing?

Understanding language better with MUM

MUM is Google’s response to the increasingly important voice search and the input of longer questions. MUM’s goal is to extract the essential information from complex search queries. The aim is to help users find relevant search results more quickly. Ultimately, Google should also be able to answer directly. A simple principle: question — answer. Over time, this principle is expected to become more and more comprehensive. No matter how complicated the question.

MUM can transfer knowledge

At present, the new MUM algorithm is being tested primarily on the basis of questions related to Covid-19. For example, MUM makes it possible for the search engine to recognize and correctly assign 800 variations of vaccine names within a few seconds — an all of this in 50 languages. With MUM, this process can be accelerated significantly.

What took weeks in the past now takes just a few seconds. This is, of course, based on artificial intelligence. MUM transfers acquired knowledge and learns independently from the user’s input. This eliminates the need for a new approach to information processing for each new language. MUM evolves on its own.

A new form of results

MUM will redesign Google search. According to Google, search results will look different in the future. Instead of ten blue links to relevant pages, this is what the user will see in the future after asking a question:

  1. Things to know
  2. Topic zoom
  3. Visual results:

This three-way division is intended to help the searcher find the right path. This is how Google explicitly puts it: “find the right path”.

The first step is the “things to know”. Here, Google independently determines which questions are related to a topic. Until now, the user always had to ask further questions in order to gradually obtain the answer to a complex question. Google now performs this work for the user by having the machine pre-draw the most relevant paths determined by the AI.

The topic zoom is intended to make it possible to either delve deeper into a topic or jump out again. With just a few clicks, it’s easy for users to either refine or expand on the topic.

In visual search, Google users are now given the option to ask questions directly related to the image. This happens, for example, by narrowing down certain parts of the image. Based on this image section, Google formulates questions or refers to videos that provide answers, for example. Point-and-Ask is intended to make it easier for the user to find the exact moment in a video that provides the answer to a question.

Video analysis with MUM

Google has been using advanced AI systems to identify key scenes from videos for quite some time. MUM now goes a step further and also recognizes the relevance of information that is not explicitly mentioned in a clip. MUM recognizes context, analyzes related links and videos, and identifies significant scenes. The new algorithm is even better at evaluating video and audio elements.

The entire Google search is set to become an increasingly multimedia experience. Anyone researching a term or entering specific questions will be provided with a variety of media formats to help them along.

This will also have an impact on online shopping with Google. The new algorithm is designed to help Google better understand images and videos — and offer users new options. With Google Lens, the potential buyer simply opens a section of an image. Google then automatically combines a possible search query with the image detail. This makes it particularly easy to search for similar items, for example.


What impact will MUM have on search engine optimization? Most likely, the new algorithm will boost existing SEO trends. This means, for example:

  • Keywords will tend to lose importance. Search engine optimization of websites and other online content will be more oriented toward FAQs and comprehensive topics.
  • Targeted content still remains the central prerequisite for good Google positions. Google-oriented structuring of data is indispensable for this.


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A further development is the growing importance of images, graphic elements and videos. These will play a greater role on the SERPs. MUM therefore means that one must now optimize previously neglected web elements beyond text for Google search.


Learning from Google means learning to win — this is especially true for SEO. With MUM, the largest search engine takes another step towards semantic search: Google understands what you are looking for and gives you an immediate answer. Now, the task of SEOs will be to further sharpen the focus on well-structured data, so that based on the code and the keywords, the biggest search engine already knows for which information the offered web content is suitable.


Dieser Artikel wurde am 10.December 2021 von Jan Knupper geschrieben.


Jan Knupper