We are all in this unprecedented time of changes as far as the WEB (Internet) is concerned, these are exciting times but along with that, these are the times which will make difference in our lives. Our WEB is evolving every second and moving fast towards the idea of Semantic Web, where the information will be well organised and the searcher will get (almost) the perfect possible answer for her / his queries, there will be no need to explore a lot of documents or links to reach that perfect answer as is the case today.
Google has already embraced the concept of Semantic Search in its algorithm called Humming Bird and it is going great. Semantic Search takes into account many aspects into account for providing the searchers with great results, to name a few, it takes into account, the searcher’s location, searcher’s search history, searcher’s friends’ tastes and preferences, time of search, quality of the provider website’s content, people’s engagement in the provider website and many other signals to provide the most relevant results. In a nutshell, the intent of the searcher and high-quality content is taken into account by semantic search.
All this is nothing short of evolution going on the Internet, it has affected the internet marketing as a whole and it will affect it quite substantially in the coming future as well. Internet marketers have to adapt their marketing strategies accordingly and the process of this adaptation has to be quite expedited as semantic web is not so far away, in fact, it is knocking on the doors. However, it is not going to be a piece of cake, big decisions are to be taken by internet marketers, it has never been easy to get rid of traditional ways of doing work and accepting the change, this dogma will stand true this time as well.
How Semantic Search affects Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
SEO has revolved around keywords and back links from the time of its advent, but now is the time when change in SEO is inevitable. SEO is not dead but SEO is resuscitated and the new SEO is called Semantic SEO. Semantic SEO no more takes into account just the keywords or back links, it rather takes into account searcher’s intent and searcher’s requirements as well. Traditional SEO was search engine focused but the Semantic SEO is searcher/ user based.
Semantic SEO is entirely user/ searcher focused but there are certain activities which will require an SEO’s attention to make a website search engine friendly as well. Semantic web is about data categorization and organization and this is done through microformats or schemas. Microformats or schemas are conventional codes or syntaxes which help in information retrieval and extraction for search engines. Google and other major search engines have put combined efforts to put together a website “schema.org” which consists of the schemas that webmasters can use to make their website’s data structured and easily available for search engines.
Using schemas or microformats will not directly improve a website’s rankings in search engine results, but it will make the information on your website easily understandable and available to search engines so that they could use it without facing any impediment in the information retrieval and extraction process.
Semantic SEO emphasizes on high-quality and original content, which creates value for the user. Content without a value to the user is futile. High-quality content need not necessarily consist of target keywords, anchor texts, links from some web pages or other similar traditional SEO activities, high-quality content simply creates value for the user and that’s all. No rocket science in that.
How Semantic Search affects Social Media Marketing (SMM)?
Semantic Search is about understanding the intent of the searcher and providing him/her with the best answer that will fulfill his/ her requirements. Semantic Search engines will be able to find the information about a business if it has a good presence on the internet, which means, that the business is talked about on the web by the people interested in its services. In order to improve a business’s overall presence on the web, marketers have to embrace a holistic approach to carrying out Social Media Marketing (SMM), as SMM is the best way to improve a business’s overall internet presence.
A holistic approach of Social Media Marketing suggests that, it is not only about getting few fans and likes on Facebook or doing some tweeting on twitter or getting some plus ones in Google Plus. It’s more than all of that, it is actually about engaging your target audience, indulging in conversations with them and the most important thing, try not to sell your products and services on social media platforms directly, it simply, won’t help. In a nutshell, focus more on “SOCIAL”, then on “Media” and “Marketing”.
Content Marketing can be a great choice when trying to engage target audience and social media marketing plays an important role in improving the reach of the content to the target audience. Therefore, it will not be wrong to say that content media marketing can be hugely benefited by social media marketing, and vice-versa, also stands true. I will not go that far to say that, the social media marketing and content marketing are interdependent but, they are certainly quite closely related and can do wonders if used together in Semantic Web.
To summarize it all, Semantic Web is about people and high-quality information. To be successful in modern times of Semantic Web, marketers have to engage people with high-quality content/ information which could create value for people (the target audience).