Surfacing useful and relevant content

Google does not make editorial decisions about what articles to show, except in infrequent cases, which we communicate to users, where we may highlight specific topics in designated experiences. Instead, our primary means to connect you with the most useful articles is to rely on our news algorithms, which look at factors such as the relevance and freshness of the content, as well as the expertise of the source, to determine the articles you see. Each of these factors is weighed alongside the others and would not be the sole reason for showing an article. Many of our approaches build on the ranking systems used by Google Search. The key factors we evaluate include:

Relevance

Relevance to your search terms is a key factor in determining what you see for query-based experiences like “Top stories” in Google Search. A news article is relevant if it has the information you are looking for. The most basic signal that information is relevant is when an article contains the same keywords as your search, but our algorithms also have more advanced ways to determine relevance.
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Interests

Your interests may help determine results in personalized content experiences such as Discover and the For You tab in Google News. You may see articles that match interests you’ve specified or that we inferred from your past activity on Google products, depending on your account settings. Our systems do not attempt to rank content based on any political or ideological point of view, nor do they attempt to infer the points of view of our users or of the content we rank.
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Location

Your location influences which articles you see. We use where you are to help you find content relevant to your area, such as Local stories in Google News. If you’re in the United States and you search for “football,” Google will most likely show you results about American football. Whereas if you search for “football” in Europe, Google will likely rank results about the game Americans call soccer higher.
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Prominence

Prominence is a way to identify noteworthy news stories. For example, our news algorithms take into account if publishers are writing a lot of articles about a particular news story and are featuring that coverage prominently on their sites, as well as how much a story or article is trending.
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Authoritativeness

Authoritativeness signals help prioritize high-quality information from the most reliable sources available. To do this, our systems are designed to identify signals that can help determine which pages demonstrate expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness on a given topic, based on feedback from Search raters. Those signals can include whether other people value the source for similar queries or whether other prominent websites on the subject link to the story.
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Freshness

Freshness refers to how recently the article was published and how important to this story having the freshest content is. When news is happening, our algorithms may determine that an article with up-to-date information is likely more useful than an older one.
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Usability

Usability assesses how easy it is to view content on a site, such as whether the site appears correctly in different browsers; whether it is designed for all device types and sizes, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones; and whether the page loading times work well for users with slow Internet connections.
Illustration of a computer highlighting the top news story on multiple websites
Relevance
Relevance to your search terms is a key factor in determining what you see for query-based experiences like “Top stories” in Google Search. A news article is relevant if it has the information you are looking for. The most basic signal that information is relevant is when an article contains the same keywords as your search, but our algorithms also have more advanced ways to determine relevance.
Illustration of a search of
Interests
Your interests may help determine results in personalized content experiences such as Discover and the For You tab in Google News. You may see articles that match interests you’ve specified or that we inferred from your past activity on Google products, depending on your account settings. Our systems do not attempt to rank content based on any political or ideological point of view, nor do they attempt to infer the points of view of our users or of the content we rank.
Illustration of a computer connected to many sites
Location
Your location influences which articles you see. We use where you are to help you find content relevant to your area, such as Local stories in Google News. If you’re in the United States and you search for “football,” Google will most likely show you results about American football. Whereas if you search for “football” in Europe, Google will likely rank results about the game Americans call soccer higher.
Illustration of a computer with a calendar
Prominence
Prominence is a way to identify noteworthy news stories. For example, our news algorithms take into account if publishers are writing a lot of articles about a particular news story and are featuring that coverage prominently on their sites, as well as how much a story or article is trending.
Illustration of a computer with a calendar
Freshness
Freshness refers to how recently the article was published and how important to this story having the freshest content is. When news is happening, our algorithms may determine that an article with up-to-date information is likely more useful than an older one.
Illustration of a computer with a calendar
Usability
Usability assesses how easy it is to view content on a site, such as whether the site appears correctly in different browsers; whether it is designed for all device types and sizes, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones; and whether the page loading times work well for users with slow Internet connections.
Illustration of a computer highlighting the top news story on multiple websites

Our news algorithms are not designed to use the following factors to influence ranking:

  • Point of view on issues - While some personalized news experiences are designed to connect you with stories you may be interested in, none of our systems endeavor to assess a publisher’s—or a user’s—ideological or political leanings.
  • Ad sales or commercial relationships - We take measures to ensure that Google’s commercial relationships do not impact the design of our news algorithms. Advertisers and partners do not receive special treatment with regard to how we surface news articles.
  • Features such as a user’s gender, religious beliefs, age, health information, race, or other sensitive characteristics.