Sunday, August 12, 2012

How Does Google Applies Semantic Search- SEO RESEARCH SERIES - Part 1

Topic:- How Does Google Applies Semantic Search ?

Applying Semantic Search
Applying Semantic Search (Image Source:-
Semantic search applies the concept of  finding out words that are used in the same context. It is one of the foremost techniques based on Latent Semantic Indexing which makes the search engines think like humans and find out the relationship between words.

Example- 1

For example if you are searching for a common term  like “Umbrella” then the search engines find it difficult to understand the real context of the word Umbrella. It can think of several options while presenting the results, like- Umbrella can be the rainshade, it can be the popular Rihanna song,it can be the name of a company, it can be the name of a film etc. In order to present before the user the most desired set of results, it displays every possible meaning of the word Umbrella (obviously based on the relevancy and authority algorithm). (See Google ranking factors for more details)

Google semantic search example
Google's presentation of Semantic results

As displayed above, Google returns results containing the meaning of Umbrella from Wikipedia, the song Umbrella from Rihana’s album, the Baseballs Umbrella from the album strike and some Umbrella manufacturers as well. In addition is also displays a list of suggested Umbrella stores and Umbrella manufacturers so that you can easily click on the links provided to buy an Umbrella of your choice. Hence, it presents before you every possible option which conveys the meaning of Umbrella.

What's new? - With the recent introduction of the Google Knowledge Graph , Google also displays list of possible results from Knowledge graph related to the world Umbrella. In this case it's Rihanna and Marie Digby. In future we can expect the list to go longer as the knowledge graph is updating at a very rapid pace.

Example 2

Searching for another common term like "Sunflower" returns the results as shown below:-

google-semantic-search -example-3

Here we can see that when searching for another common term like "Sunflower" , Google returns results which explains the meaning of Sunflower, a knowledge graph related to the flower "Sunflower", results from Wichita State University's weekly newspaper, An electric power corporation company named Sunflower and a Restaurant named Sunflower. All these results presents the wide variety of semantic results presented by Google.

other updates:-

As mentioned on the post on Googleblog on August 8, 2012  entitled "Building search engine of the future, one baby step at a time" , Google will now include personalized Gmail results into the search results itself. So, it may even find out the meaning of the word by searching your emails. Source:-

(A part of Seo research series by Joydeep Bhattacharya)

Also See:- 

Query Highlighting on Google Search Results – SEO RESEARCH SERIES PART 3

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