Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Set Up The Semantic Stage For Your Website And Prepare Your Site For The Semantic Web

After Google introduced the Knowledge Graph and Structured Data feature in GWMT , the SEO blogosphere is all about semantic search and how to offer content to the Googlebot in data format rather than only text format.

We can see in the image above that due to the Knowledge Graph the SERPs offer more information about the query even though it is not mentioned in the search query. The RHS of the search results page gives details about the person which is the result of the Knowledge graph which Google has introduced.

HTML till now has been the markup language which helps us to offer content in HTML tags but now it is not only about content any more  but  also about context which the search engine bots want to extract while crawling. This helps the search engine to add quality to their search results and to a certain extent combat spam.

It is not only the search engines but also the social media sites which are paving their way towards the semantic web. Facebook has the Open Graph protocol and Twitter also recently introduced the Twitter Cards to display summary of the link being shared in the tweet.

Semantic search seeks to improve search accuracy by understanding searcher intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in the searchable dataspace, whether on the Web or within a closed system, to generate more relevant results.

How To Prepare Your Site For The Semantic Web:

HTML 5 is the structured markup language of the future but one can easily prepare the existing sites for semantic search  by making the following 7 simple changes on the website :

1. Add the address on the contact page or wherever it appears on the site using an hCard as per microformats.org

2. Add video and audio files on your site using the schemas  as per schema.org

3. Add the authorship markup for the blog.

4. Implement Twitter Card on the blog
5. Integrate FaceBook  Open Graph  on the site and blog

6. While writing content forget the keywords and focus on context

7. Optimize for brand terms also as brand search is more correlated to the online identity hence ranking for brand terms is also very important.

Testing the structured markup using the rich snippets testing tool gives an idea about how it will be displayed in SERPs and by monitoring the ‘Structured Data’ feature in GWMTs gives you an idea how it is getting indexed in Google.

These simple changes will undoubtedly prepare the site for the semantic web till you start using HTML 5 as a norm for web development.

We shall be writing about how to implement these 7 steps in detail in our upcoming posts.

Next Friday 12th October 2012 - Read about “How To the Implement hcard and Validate It As Per Microformats.org “


  1. If I’m running a business directory site, should I have semantic pages setup for addresses on each individual listing page? Or this example only be useful for the parent domain?

  2. semantic will help all websites, whether a directory or a normal business website. Yes use semantic coding.

  3. Ideally each individual listing should be written using the schema as per schema.org as every listing will be a separate record in the data set making the search engine index content accordingly