I can’t help but correlate the retirement of Google Wonder Wheel tool with the release of Google Knowledge Graph. There is simply an uncanny resemblance with how these two Google products work. While the purpose of this post is not specifically to reverse engineer and explain how knowledge graph works, I can categorically say that after Google killed one of the most amazing and legitimate SEO copywriting tools I’ve seen they gave us something that we can work on to gain advantage for our website while doing the web the very good it deserves.
What Is Google Knowledge Graph?
The Google Knowledge Graph is the next evolution in search engine for it no longer returns raw information from your search queries, instead, it will now return knowledge. As Mashable puts it, Google search suddenly becomes 1,000 times smarter and I couldn’t agree more.
The Knowledge Graph enables you to search for things, people or places that Google knows about—landmarks, celebrities, cities, sports teams, buildings, geographical features, movies, celestial objects, works of art and more—and instantly get information that’s relevant to your query.
You can see a video on how this new product works:
One might argue that this is another step for Google to police the web and dictate what we should see when we enter search queries, but isn’t that already what has been going since Google became a verb synonymous to search? So since we clearly can’t beat Google, let’s just join them.
Google Knowledge Graph SEO
1. Capitalize On Latent Semantic Indexing Or LSI
Note that the first three tips on this post extrapolate the ways Google Knowledge Graph improves the search based on their official release.
Now what is LSI? Wikipedia gives us a very scientific and algorithmic definition of the term.
Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) is an indexing and retrieval method that uses a mathematical technique called Singular value decomposition (SVD) to identify patterns in the relationships between the terms and concepts contained in an unstructured collection of text. LSI is based on the principle that words that are used in the same contexts tend to have similar meanings. A key feature of LSI is its ability to extract the conceptual content of a body of text by establishing associations between those terms that occur in similar contexts.
LSI is an old concept and it relates to the use of words based on context as oppose to well, use of it without context. It means that Google indentifies the meaning of words based how they’re used in content, blog posts, articles, meta description like keyword data, ebooks etc.
I have here new examples.
The word “markup” can either be used on a sentence from a blog post in the following:
Implementing Google Authorship Markup increases click through rate or CTR according to the latest SEO experiment we conducted.
That real estate broker’s high markup cost dwindles the chance of this prime property being sold to the market.
The word “marvel” can be used on the following set of (meta) keywords:
Marvel, Avengers, Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk
marvel, wonder, 7 wonders of the world, amazing places, great pyramid of giza, hanging gardens of Babylon
This means that when you write content for both humans and search engines (in terms of metas) you should always consider LSI, which would literally mean the further use of related keywords and key phrases to your keywords. It makes your content appear authoritative, natural and not spammy. More importantly, it guides you in providing a more relevant, long lasting and often timely content.
Because language is ambiguous, using LSI can always help Google find the right meaning and knowledge that the content you produced tries to impart.
Here are final takeaways from my SEO presentation about the use of LSI:
- Use semantically related terms
- Use niche jargon / industry standard terms liberally
- Add popular mother or seed KWs when only writing for its long tail
- Use brand names when applicable
- Mention celebrities, industry leaders / pioneers
2. Knowledge (Not Just Information Or Keywords) As Summary
Google Knowledge Graph tells us the importance of a more relevant, useful and original summary. The example on the official Google post takes in by putting a lot of information (new and unique for the most part) and writing it as a foundation for new knowledge.
How can we differentiate writing keywords vs writing knowledge as summaries?
Based on the examples given by Google, what’s contained in their summaries are actually highly expandable subjects and topics that all merit the same (or close to the) amount of writing and research as the first main topic. We’ll have more of this subject in the future.
Knowledge has a very critical use by searchers and these things should be considered when coming up with the summary:
- Knowledge affects thinking, as opposed to Information which obviously informs. The difference is this: an article simply telling you that Google has released the Knowledge Graph vs an article telling you that Google has released the Knowledge Graph AND how you can react to it as an SEO and how you can use the very system to gain more exposure, traffic, authority etc.
- Contains (among other things) ideas, concepts, contexts and meanings.
- Says something new and not easily replicable. Of course you can repeat the news that Google has released the Knowledge Graph in your post and you can also write about Google has released the Knowledge Graph and how you can react to it as an SEO and how you can use the very system to gain more exposure, traffic, authority BUT the latter would impeccably require you to do more research or at least link to this post, because:
- It has affected your idea and knowledge of the subject
- It has affected (or will affect) you on your strategies for the Google Knowledge Graph, whether subconsciously or not (which happens to be the purpose of this post)
.. And that is precisely what differentiates summarizing with Knowledge vs summarizing with Information (or keywords alone).
3. Write Deeper And Broader
Google post noted:
And we can now sometimes help answer your next question before you’ve asked it, because the facts we show are informed by what other people have searched for.
Yes, you read it right. That’s answering the question even before the searcher asked it. This after all is the real future of search, an algorithm that gives you more than what you asked for.
For content producers this implies that our article and posts must give more value than what searcher originally intended to look for. It also means that thin content, those that are mere rewrites of what already can be found elsewhere isn’t really a search engine algorithmic change bulletproofed content.
Take note of these things when SEOing with Google Knowledge Graph in consideration:
- Produce in-depth contents, the kind of segments that you will see on documentaries rather than short and standard news on standard 6 o’clock news.
- If you cannot expound a subject on your content (due to time constraints or lack of expertise), mention it and link to an authority page discussing the topic
- Human interest plays a lot of factor in determining what information to write and include (depending on the subject and focus of your content)
- Answer as many important questions on your content as possible
- Stay away from linear writing. A content that has no dimension or depth will soon be dead. Always think of how you can add new meaning to your content, again, unique but more importantly original
- For non-news content, think of the impact of your content say a month from now, a year from now, if it will be totally useless after a considerable amount of time then it mean that you’re not really adding value to the web
4. Branch Your Content Distribution
Branching where your content appears will not only help your main website or your brand but might also help Knowledge Graph one way or another.
Because the new system banks on giving in knowledge and not just raw information, spreading and syndicating your content on different websites based on the type of information they give (which ultimately becomes the source of knowledge) can do nothing but help your content. Here are a few examples of websites where you can share, syndicate or link your content from:
5. Add Pictures To Your Content
Google Knowledge Graph thrives on pictures, eye catching pictures. And in case you need to hear it, people are visual and the old mantra that a picture paints a thousand words remains to be true to date. Make sure you always add relevant pictures and eye-catching image on your content, not just on your own page but for the pages where you syndicate your content as well.
As always just make sure you do proper attribution or ask permission to the owner of the image. There are many sources of high quality images and even artwork that you can use such as the following:
6. Add Videos To Your Content
Not a lot of people like to read. If you’ve reached this part of my post without skipping tips 1 – 5, then it means you’re among those people who still like to read. So what does that imply? First you’re among the endangered species of Internet user. Second, important content gets good and real readers. But that doesn’t mean that you cannot add video to your content when you already have written something that is worth reading.
Take for example WhiteBoard Friday by SEOMoz, they have good videos and always along with it are transcriptions of the video – which can stand as the written content (along with the video). The same goes to Google’s official blog, they usually have videos alongside their content. Why?
- Videos and written content can go hand in hand
- Videos and written content are both shareable, and that means twice the channel where you can get traffic and twice the chance to get viral
- Long block of text is never a good thing
- Videos can reduce bounce rate especially when they’re hosted on YouTube (I know there should be a study to support this, I should publish one soon)
How do you think Google Knowledge Graph will affect SEO? Do you have tips on how we can maximize this new system for our websites? Share it in the comment section. Don’t forget to share this post to your colleagues too, they might pick a thing or two from my efforts.
Thanks to Kim of the World for this great article.