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From Strings to Things - Entity Optimization


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My deck from the "Strings to Things' session at Pubcon Vegas 2017. In this presentation, I discuss the importance of evaluating the entire digital ecosystem of brands as well as share some ways to get started in helping the Search Engines better understand the brand as a whole. Written explanation of the slides is included in the appendix.

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From Strings to Things - Entity Optimization

  1. 1. Strings  to  Things Elmer  Boutin Director,  Organic  Search  (SEO)
  2. 2. About  Elmer  … @rehor  |  #pubcon
  3. 3. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  4. 4. From  Strings  to  Things Entity  Optimization @rehor  |  #pubcon
  5. 5. @rehor  |  #pubcon What  is  an  entity?
  6. 6. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  7. 7. “The  destiny  of  [Google’s  search   engine]  is  to  become  that  Star  Trek   computer,  and  that’s  what  we  are   building.”  – Amit Singhal,  former  VP   of  Google  Search @rehor  |  #pubcon
  8. 8. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  9. 9. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  10. 10. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  11. 11. @rehor  |  #pubcon
  12. 12. “You  must  be  the  answer”  -­‐ Jake  Bohall
  13. 13. @rehor  |  #pubcon How  smart  are  the   Engines  getting?
  14. 14. @rehor  |  #pubcon Website  Quality
  15. 15. Reputation  as  part  of  Google’s   website  quality  score In  late  2015,  Google  released  updated  website   quality  rater  guidelines  including  instructions  for   reviewers  to  check  the  reputation  of  the   organization/business  represented  by  the  website   they  are  evaluating.   @rehor  |  #pubcon
  16. 16. Synonyms Antonyms Homonyms Misspellings Autocorrect  Goofs
  17. 17. Image  courtesy  of  Eric  Enge,  Stone  Temple Conversational  Language   Results
  18. 18. @rehor  |  #pubcon Things  you  can  do   today  to  optimize  for   Knowledge  Graphs
  19. 19. @rehor  |  #pubcon & Yourself! (or  your  brand)
  20. 20. @rehor  |  #pubcon Organize  your  digital   ecosystem
  21. 21. @rehor  |  #pubcon KEYWORD  STRINGS SEMANTIC  SEARCH/ENTITIES • Cars • Car Dealers • What is the best crossover for me? • Where can I buy a Ford Fusion? Web  Page Vehicles Brands Locations Types vs.
  22. 22. @rehor  |  #pubcon Microsites  …
  23. 23. @rehor  |  #pubcon Subdomains  …
  24. 24. @rehor  |  #pubcon Directory  Structure
  25. 25. @rehor  |  #pubcon – Your  new  favorite   website!
  26. 26. Organization  Schema @rehor  |  #pubcon
  27. 27. Person  or  Role  Schema @rehor  |  #pubcon <script  type="application/ld+json"> {    "@context":  "",     "@type":  "SportsTeam",     "name":  "San  Francisco  49ers",   "member":   {        "@type":  "OrganizationRole",         "member":  {            "@type":  "Person",             "name":  "Joe  Montana"        },         "startDate":  "1979",       "endDate":  "1992",         "roleName":  "Quarterback"    }}</script> <script  type="application/ld+json"> {    "@context":  "",     "@type":  "CollegeOrUniversity",     "name":  "University  of  Cambridge",     "sameAs":   " _Cambridge",    "alumni":  {        "@type":   "OrganizationRole",        "alumni":  {             "@type":  "Person",              "name":  "Delia   Derbyshire",            "sameAs":   " hire"        },        "startDate":  "1959"    }}
  28. 28.
  29. 29. Appendix
  30. 30. About  Elmer  … Marketing  Technologist  over  20  years • Started  building  websites  on  Notepad • 12  years  as  Corporate  Webmaster • Nearly  6  years  doing  agency  work • From  SMBs  to  Fortune  5-­sized  clients • Currently  work  on  large,  enterprise  clients @rehor  |  #pubcon
  31. 31. What  is  an  entity? An  entity  is  basically  a  noun • Person • Place • Animal • Thing • And  don’t  forget  that  brands  are  entities @rehor  |  #pubcon
  32. 32. Google  and  Bing  are  trying  to  mimic  human  behavior. Think  about  how  humans  develop  language  skills • Babies  understand  concepts  before  words • As  they  grow,  their  conceptual  understanding  and  their   ability  to  express  themselves  grows • As  they  get  into  adolescents,  they  continue  to  develop   the  connections  between  concepts  and  language The  search  engines  went  a  little  backwards • They  started  with  words • Then  they  moved  to  concepts • Could  be  considered  at  the  adolescent  stage
  33. 33. • SEOs  have  had  to  change  how  we  perceive  “success” • At  one  time,  being  on  page  1  was  pretty  good  -­ then  it  went  to  top  5,  then  top  3 • Now  with  Mobile  we  have  to  work  for  Position  1  or   position  0
  34. 34. • Google’s  Hummingbird  update  bought  about  significant   changes  in  understanding  of  query  subtleties  – like   “near,”  “versus”  an  other  intent-­focused  items • Google  and  Bing  look  at  words  on  the  page  – they  are   still  very  important.  But,  they  are  also  looking  at  the   context  of  the  content  within  the  larger  digital  ecosystem   (other  websites,  social  sites,  etc.) • Think  about  how  you  look  for  a  place  to  eat  and   research  online.  That’s  what  the  Engines  are  trying  to   piece  together  in  order  to  make  your  experience  with   them  as  seamless  as  possible.
  35. 35. • The  Engines  are  getting  really  smart • Local  search  aspects • Synonyms  and  misspellings • Understanding  Autocorrect  issues • Organizing  your  digital  ecosystem  is  of  great   importance • Microsites  often  cause  more  problems  than  they   solve  and  should  be  avoided  – with  some   exceptions • Subdomains  can  be  useful,  but  should  be  used   judiciously
  36. 36. • On  the  website,  it’s  key  to  organize  information  in   logical  buckets,  in  a  logical  folder  structure • SPA  applications  tend  to  force  all  content  into  1  URL,   which  really  makes  for  messy  SEO • Schema  is  critical   • Learn  about  the  types  of  Schema  tagging  that   apply  to  your  website • Implement  them  ASAP • 2  good  ones  to  start  with: • Organization • Person  or  Role  
  37. 37. Image  Credits Except  as  otherwise  indicated,  all  images  are  from Google  “Hummingbird”  Slide  from  Eric  Enge of  Stone  Temple Google  SERP  screen  shots  from­evolution-­5-­ways-­search-­engine-­results-­have-­changed-­over-­time/