Google is on the move yet again, but this time the news is better than the usual surprise Panda update. As of two days ago, Google launched its Knowledge Graph in order to better a user’s experience. The new feature will be rolling out in English in the U.S. first, but will soon be available in all languages. Matt Cutts explained that the graph is supposed to help make search results and algorithms “more human.”
How the Google Knowledge Graph Works
Because of the sheer amount of information about users and information about different topics that Google has available, this new feature has the potential to really get search right. Google will be using nearly 500 million different things (people, places, objects, ideas, etc.) and will utilize more than 3.5billion facts about all of the connections between these different subjects. Below is a screenshot Google provided to illustrate how the new graph will look when you type in a search:
As you can see, the bulk of a SERP will remain the same, but the right hand side of the screen will change. Although this map will not be a part of every single search at first, basic search queries will soon have this option.
Benefits of the Google Knowledge Graph
This new feature will do three things for users:
1. Help eliminate ambiguous language so that search results are less confusing.
One of the main problems that Google discussed was the ambiguity of language. The new knowledge graph will help make separate different meanings of the same word. For example, the search query “staples” could mean the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the office supply store, or information about actual staples that hold together paper. The graph will work to make sure that these different results are more separated.
2. Create an easy to understand summary of the topic.
The new graph will make it easy for users to get basic information quickly, much like Wikipedia style content. Google will pull information about past search queries for a given subject and base the summary on those past results. For example, if the majority of people have been searching for the novel To Kill a Mockingbird as opposed to the film, the summary will be largely based on the history of the novel.
3. Help illustrate connections between different subjects.
The graph will help show connections between different things across the Internet. Cutts explained that one of the most important aspects of search is being able to learn something you didn’t even realize you were looking to learn; the Knowledge Graph will help make this possible.
Will the Knowledge Graph Affect SEO and Rankings?
Google changes always seem to mix up rankings and cause trouble for many small businesses, but this change isn’t intended to make things harder on your typical website. It seems as though information resources, such as Wikipedia, could potentially lose traffic, but the majority of websites are specific enough that people will still want to click. The Knowledge Graph will be kept to the side and should not affect rankings. However, it will be a few weeks before we can be absolutely sure.
Do you think the Knowledge Graph will affect a website’s SEO in any way? Do you think the Knowledge Graph is something needed or something that you will when you use Google? Let us know in the comments!