Knowledge Panels, Rich Snippets and Semantic Markup
& Semantic Markup
Director of Search Marketing
Go Fish Digital
looking for things
We have conducted a manual analysis on 1,000
unique queries randomly selected from the search
log of a commercial web search engine. It indicates
that named entities appear very frequently in
queries and about 70% of the queries contain
Named Entity Recognition in Query
Search is now about
Things not Strings
Understanding how an entity is represented in
Search Results is an important task in an SEO
Audit. That representation can influence whether
or not a site attracts visitors, and what viewers of
those search results might think about that entity.
10 Blue Links
BackRub (Google’s original name) results shown in a
provisional patent looked a little different than Google
results – they had PageRank indicators for each result
Improved Text Searching in Hypertext Systems
llllllll(provisional PageRank patent)
Definitions - 2004
Google explained in a patent in 2004 how to have definitions
appear for your site, by creating glossary pages that
contained head terms formatted with definitions, at least 5 per
page. It was worth trying and it worked!
System and method for providing definitions
Question Answering Appears - 2005
Google tells us about their start in question-answering in early
2005, referring to these answers in Search Results as
“Google Q&A”. Later these have become known as Featured
Just the Facts, Fast
Beware of Vertical Creep - 2005
Before Google introduced Universal Search Results, it
experimented with adding results to Web pages in results from
different Vertical Searches; some people referred to this as
Vertical creep into regular search results in Google
One Boxes or Answer Boxes - 2007
Sometimes Google would decide to show a single answerbox
deciding it was the best response to a query, and might
choose among different types.
Determination of a desired repository
Google’s OneBox Patent Application
Google might view the main navigation on a site, and determine
which links were the most important and provide those as
sitelinks. The criteria changed over time (as described in the
following 2 patents)
Systems and methods for providing search results (2006)
Sitelinks Based on Visual Location (2015)
If Navigation links are images of text, include Alt Text.
Make links to important information prominent.
Knowledge Panels - 2011
Enhance Your Site's Attributes
Apparatus and Method for Supplying Search Results with a
Knowledge Panels can contain information from Google
MyBusiness, Wikipedia, other Knowledge Bases, Structured
Data on the site
A Mybusiness KP can contain review snippets.
A Brand KP might be based upon Wikipedia information.
Both types of KP can have Social buttons.
• Knowledge Panels contain links to Google Reviews,
Reviews from the Web, and Critical Reviews.
• The Knowledge panels may contain sentiment-based
snippets within them from reviews.
• Sentiment detection as a ranking signal for reviewable
Enriched Results - 2012
• Enriching Search Results
• These enriched snippets contain features agreed to
between Google and the parties involved, like mlb or the
Rich Snippets - 2009
• Generating specialized search results in response to
• Rich Features are available based upon different
markup that you publish content with as described on
the Google page, Mark Up Your Content Items
Structured Snippets - 2014
Based Upon the Google Web Tables Project (2008), Google
is using the Semantics of Tables on the Web to add facts to
Introducing Structured Snippets, now a part of Google Web
Limit boilerplate in a table
Use table headings <th> to add labels to the columns they
Use meaningful attribute names in table headings to make it
more likely the tables might appear and rank for a relevant query.
Use meaningful titles, captions and semantically related text
surrounding the table.
~ from Applying WebTables in Practice (2015)
Featured Snippets - 2015
• Featured snippets in search
• Triggering Answer Boxes
Answers to questions showing featured snippets are from
The answers are chosen based upon how well they answer
Bulleted & ordered lists may be selected as answers
These answers may be personalized.
Test Structured Data
• Structured Data Testing Tool
See What Entities Google Knows
• The Entities that Google knows about can influence how
search results appear – you should learn about what
entities Google knows about for your site.
• Knowledge Graph Search API Explorer
Understanding Entity Locations
• Google tells us that they may remember the locations of
different entities based upon their Machine ID number,
which can be used to identify that entity.
• Interpreting User Queries Based on Nearby Locations
Understanding Images of Entities
• Google also tells us that they may remember the Machine
ID numbers of entities for use in Image Search at Google.
• Improving Photo Search: A Step Across the Semantic Gap
Understanding Entities in Trends
Google Includes Freebase Machine ID Numbers in Google
Trends URLs (h/t Barbara Starr). These MIDs are also shown
in the KG API.
Google has reduced Search to
querying Entities by MID
• Entities, found in Knowledge Panels are used for trends in
search, for Image Search, for locations of entities.
• What are the MIDs of the Entities you care about in search?
• How are those represented?
Director of Search Marketing
Go Fish Digital