SEO has been around for a while now and if you haven’t decided to give it a try, you are certainly one of the few. One of the great things about SEO is that it is constantly evolving, meaning there is always something new and exciting happening. But it also means you have to work hard to keep up.
In the past, SEO was all about a rigid set of keywords that you had to stick to. Now this is a lot more flexible and your keyword list should always be flexible and constantly changing to suit the demands of your changing business and website. An SEO agency can help you to manage this.
This change in the area of keywords has paved the path for the rise of importance of semantic search in SEO. You have probably seen Google change their algorithms and features on their website to allow for semantic search.
Semantic search occurs when a user starts to type a term and Google displays a drop down menu of potential options for what the user may be searching for. You have probably been involved in semantic search yourself before you just didn’t know it.
So, why is semantic search so important and what are the benefits? Well, take a look below to get your answers:
With Google’s Hummingbird algorithm update it improved the semantic search options provided to a user when they started to type a term into Google. People tend to type queries in a similar manner to the way they would talk, with less impact exact keywords.
This means that your content needs to be less about keyword stuffing and more about quality to give users what they are looking for. The rise of semantic search has resulted in a rise in the quality of content. Google will no longer show poor quality content that does not take user experience into consideration.
So instead of just doing keyword research and spitting out some low quality content, you should actually take the time to do some research of your own to get a better understanding of the topic and make your content stand out from the rest.
As discussed in the introduction, semantic search allows for more flexibility when it comes to choosing your keywords. There has been a distinct move away from exact match keywords which means you can get more creative with the type of content you create on your website.
When optimising your website you should always ensure you have flexibility and room to move, don’t just put your head in the sand. Try using semantic search for yourself to see if there are any other potential options for keywords that you haven’t thought about.
It is important to remember that Google cares more about the type of experience a user has on your website, not how technically optimised it is. This means you shouldn’t optimise your website with the Google bots in mind, you should optimise for users.
With semantic search working its magic, it usually translates to a search engine results page with higher quality results. This also leads nicely into the next sub topic of featured snippets. A featured snippet is also known as “position 0” and gives users the answer to their query usually without them even having to click onto a website.
Featured snippets are all the rage in SEO lately as it does wonders for your visibility and even though users can get the answer they are looking for without clicking onto your site, they usually still do to get more information.
Less Focus on Keywords
Keyword research is still very important and semantic search should make up a part of it. However, in total there should now be less focus on keywords and more room to focus on quality content. You shouldn’t be creating content with a set of keywords in mind, you should be creating content with the users in mind!
As well as this, each page doesn’t need to have a set of focus keywords and you don’t need to think about exact match keywords. It is important you think about what the user wants and create content that matches that.
More Bang For Your Buck Optimisation
Semantic search helps you get more value when optimising your site. This is because you have a better understanding for the type of content that your potential users find the most valuable. It is much easier to appeal to an audience when you know what they are looking for.
You need to think about the potential questions users are asking, not simply the keywords they are searching for. So with semantic search you have the ability of adding more value to a wider audience, meaning your optimisation becomes a lot more valuable.