I’ve had mixed feelings about Knowledge Graph in the past. Google’s technology often causes this sort of anxiety for SEOs. While the Knowledge Graph’s delivery of answers right in the search results can be useful to searchers, online marketers have wondered if that’s traffic deferred from our own sites. There’s been talk in the industry guided by FUD — fear, uncertainty and doubt —that if we give Google structured data then Google won’t need us anymore.
Luckily that’s not true. When Google implements new technologies, it’s our job to develop a strategy that uses the technology to our advantage. Progress is moving forward.
So in this video, content manager at Bruce Clay, Inc., Virginia Nussey, and I discuss our strategy for Knowledge Graph SEO, and it’s two-fold.
First, we should mark-up sites with structured data. It’s a must for search visibility and marking up your site is easier than ever with Data Highlighter and Schema.org conventions.
Remember that you can include multiple types of markup on a single page. It appears that not all data types will show in the results at the same time. The specific markup that is chosen to appear in the SERP varies by query. The same web page can show up with a video for one query, with event dates for another query, and yet another query may trigger a result listing with ratings. For more on the role of Schema.org and rich snippet markup in your ongoing marketing campaigns, see the SEO Factors & Trends 2013 Midyear Report.
And second, the key to preventing your site’s obsolescence in a Knowledge Graph SERP is publishing complex information that goes beyond the “what is?”
If you were to do a search for [Australian dollar to U.S. dollar conversion], you used to have to go to websites and run a currency converter to figure it out; now Google just answers it right there. What is the height of the Eiffel Tower? What is the weather in Simi Valley, California? Google answers it right there.
It’s the sites that provide specific “what is” types of information that are losing out on traffic as Google works on becoming a “knowledge engine.” So, the adaptation for SEOs is to provide content that extends beyond “what is _____,” offering more complex information, such as step-by-step guides or how-tos to attract click-throughs.
It comes down to making your site the authority by implementing structured data markup and offering strong information for your audience based on their needs. A sound strategy for Knowledge Graph comes down to smart on-page optimization and quality, comprehensive content.
Stay tuned for my upcoming book on Content Marketing co-authored with Murray Newlands for our holistic marketing approach to content development and SEO.