What Is the Google Knowledge Graph (and Does It Affect SEO)?

One of the biggest elements of SEO is the Google Knowledge Graph. We have all seen it at some point in our search pages results. For simplicity, we will refer to it as GKG. It is a tool that Google uses to provide users with immediate information. It is one of those cards that try to provide you with information on the search results page. This means that the user can get information without actually clicking on an actual result. It is also a tool that can affect your website’s traffic. The goal of it is to help users find relevant information as quickly and efficiently as possible. Basically, it saves them a click or two. It might sound simple, but google is transforming the approach towards SEO. This is where we need to take a hard look at our online presence and adjust in order to keep up.

What is the Google Knowledge Graph?

The GKG is a huge database. It enables Google to provide instantaneous and factual information based on the user’s query. Whenever we Google something there is a possibility we can receive instant results on the search page itself. This is the doing of the Google Knowledge Graph. Google has its own ways of collecting accurate information. There is also an SEO aspect to it. A proper SEO campaign needs to make efforts towards landing their website on that page. To answer the question of it the GKG affects SEO, the answer is a definitive yes. Such a spotlight can skyrocket your organic search results. These spots are called Knowledge Panels, or Knowledge Cards. They provide the relevant information in a short form. If a user wants to know more, they can click on that card which will take them to the related website. 

The benefits of the Google Knowledge Graph

This Google project was announced in 2012. Since then, it has been providing users with fast and clear information for their search queries. The number of clicks required to get that information is reduced significantly. Users are no longer required to browse through multiple web pages to find an answer. It is a complex database, combined with a sophisticated algorithm. It is a feat of modern Internet engineering. It is also an ongoing process that will always try to perfect itself and build upon older versions. There is no logical end goal for it. For our SEO, it creates yet another dimension that we need to take into account. If the competition gets to those cards before we do, chances are that a user will not click on our link. And why would they as the information is already there? Alternatively, it can mean a lot if our brand finds itself there.

How does it work?

Google has several decades of experience finding relevant information. The biggest hurdle in this epic endeavour is to sift through and dispose of false information. Google is licensing data in order to gather as much of it as possible. There are several sources from which Google gathers this data. Some are publicly accessible while others are privately owned and licensed. The GKG has been criticized for not providing sources for the information they provide. Indeed, there is a difference between getting the actual up to date information and getting the last readily available version from GKG. Therefore, Google needs to keep its information up to date in order to avoid such discrepancies. The changes happen automatically based on previous users and their search queries. It can also be done manually if need be, within the strict Google criteria. Anyone can offer feedback to try and improve the database. 

Google Knowledge Graph influence on SEO

As mentioned before, Google will answer the user’s query before they actually click on a link in the results pages. This means a lot fewer clicks and hits towards websites, in general. This is an obvious point of worry for someone that owns and runs a website. The click-through rates have been steadily decreasing since 2014, just 2 years after the GKG was introduced. The number of searches that did not result in a click increased by around 2%. This is the result of people adjusting to the benefits of GKG. Most importantly, organic clicks decreased as well. Websites need clicks in order to generate sales. Google made it a necessity for a website owner to end up on a Knowledge Graph. Naturally, SEO efforts around the world shifted towards the changing online market. If you can get on the graph, your worries may be over. 

Getting on the Google Knowledge Graph

Currently, one of the best ways to optimize your SEO efforts is to get on the Knowledge Panels. Google is a lot more likely to direct traffic towards your website if they have information on it. This means Google needs direct access to your website’s information. They want a trustworthy source that is giving their visitors what they want. If Google can acknowledge that your website will be bumped up on the search results page. Eventually, your information will be presented to the users in a form of Knowledge Panels and rich snippets. Obviously, this is one of the best ways to increase your web traffic. As you might have concluded, this takes a lot of time and directed effort. What are some of the best ways to optimize SEO efforts in this direction? Let us cover some of the most efficient practices. 

Connecting with Wikipedia and Google

A website needs to be connected with as many other platforms as possible. This includes social media as well. Most of the information for GKG comes from Wikipedia or Google itself. Stay connected with these giants at all times. There are a couple of ways you can do this. First, register your website with the Google Search Console. This will help you measure all the important metrics of your site’s search traffic and performance. What we can measure, we can improve upon. Second, for business owners, sign up for Google My Business. In turn, this increases your website’s visibility and authority on Google. It will also give you a feature on Google Maps. For Wikipedia, you will need a Wikidata entry. Keep your Wikipedia articles up to date with relevant information. Wikipedia links the articles to the sources they use. This makes your website much more accessible.

Schema Markup

Schema markup is a way of tagging the provided content in a way that Google understands it. As mentioned before, Google really likes knowing what your content is about. In turn, it will flag it for the right people that are searching for relevant information. Schema markup is a good way to get rich snippets, a Knowledge Panel, and to appear in some non-branded queries. Rich snippets are a special kind of search result. These do not include information stored in the meta description. Schema markup is a coding technique. Google is then able to recognize different types of data on your website. This means reviews, phone numbers, dates, times and multimedia content are properly categorized. It might seem like a hassle, but prevention and proactivity is always the better option. Google penalty removal is always an option in case you find yourself behind the SEO market demand. 

Regular activity and consistency

Google relies on regular and consistent content production. It is not enough to set it and forget it when it comes to managing a website. SEO is a constant struggle in an ever-shifting global, online market. Your content needs to follow suit. Your web pages, content and information need to be up to date. Stay active on all of your online outlets. This means social media platforms as well. Keep up with the competition and eventually, surpass them. The more you post the better, up to a point, that is. Updates are always welcome, as long as you do not spam your audience. There is such a thing as too many updates. It is more about consistency. Humans are habitual creatures, they like habits. If they know you will post at an exact time, they will trust you and your brand. Make a posting schedule and stick to it.

Content quality

This is the final, and probably the most important step of all when it comes to making content. Make sure it is relevant and to the point. All search engines have one top priority. User experience. The search results pages need to give users what they want efficiently. Make your content reflect that. Make it as user friendly as possible. Utilize keywords, metadata, and all the other SEO conventions. If you can combine all of these various aspects together consistently over time, your SEO rankings will steadily improve. 

The Google Knowledge Graph is powered by an untold number of entities and facts. It helps us navigate through the sea of information in search of that one, little crucial piece of information. The GKG is the natural evolution of the search engine algorithm. Incorporate it into your SEO campaign and rank even higher than the competition.

What Is the Google Knowledge Graph (and Does It Affect SEO)?

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