Google has made its search results context sensitive, prompting internet users to become more specific.
Entitled the Knowledge Graph, the Google update will move away from simply matching keywords to queries and instead ensure search results are more relevant to the individual.
Senior vice-president of engineering at Google Amit Singhal posted the changes on the Google official blog, using the example of the Taj Mahal. The results will ask the user whether they mean the monument in India, their local restaurant or the musician of the same name. When the right one is clicked, all the irrelevant search results will be filtered out.
"We've always believed that the perfect search engine should understand exactly what you mean and give you back exactly what you want. 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," he explained.
But how does this relate to the SEO strategies of SMEs?
Google is becoming more predictive
The Knowledge Graph can draw upon information about a business or topic and prevent an individual from needing to submit a second search query. This means that small businesses need to ensure their search-optimised articles, websites and blogs need to be as informative as possible. Content marketing strategies will increasingly have to focus on relevancy and richness.
Relevancy and SEO
Since Google is moving away from simple keyword matches, SMEs will need to ensure their content is relevant. A recent ContentPlus article explained that white hat SEO strategies need to be used by small businesses, while black hat methods – which include keyword stuffing – should be ignored. Microsoft Bing has also placed relevancy on a pedestal, so blogs, features and social media pages should follow suit.
Past searches are drawn upon
The previous interactions of other internet users are taken into account by Google when delivering the most relevant results. With Google pushing Google+ and other social media brand pages to the fore, small businesses need to have an effective presence on these networks if they are to be in with a chance of high search rankings. The higher the rankings, the more likely a page will be clicked on and the better the chance people engage with brands on social media.
Further small business SEO advice can be found here: