From Knowledge Graphs to AI-powered SEO

From Knowledge Graphs to AI-powered SEO

Using taxonomies, schemas and knowledge graphs to improve search engine rankings and web publishing workflows

Structured data has became the avenue toward advanced functionalities in Google (check out our rich results guide) and at the same time, the bridge between traditional search and voice search.

Here is an abstract of Andrea Volpini‘s presentation at Connected Data London.

It all started with… Schema.org

The starting point of all this process started was the foundation of schema.org, the de-facto standard for Linked Data development, developed by and for search engines.  While structured data implemented through Schema is a critical element for successful SEO campaigns; to enable a brand to resonate via Google’s search results, it becomes crucial to leverage open linked data standards.

Why Semantic Open Data are Relevant for SEO Today

Semantic Open Data are the foundation of the Semantic Web and make a Knowledge Graph possible.

Following an EU regulation introduced first in France, Google used structured data as implicit consent for content to become open on the web. In short, structured data enable publishers and content creators to have wider control over their content and how they want Google to repurpose it in its search results (read structured data as an opt-in mechanism for rich results).

Thus, schema.org and structured data become a wider mechanism than what we see from rich results. They enable publishers of content to have:

  • wider visibility for their brand
  • more control over their content.

The rise of synthetic queries

Another key element is given by the fact that Google uses structured data to generate queries in its Knowledge Graph. What Bill Slawski called synthetic query, as we discussed in the interview with him here. What that means is that if Google doesn’t have enough volume on a query, it might still create it by scraping structured data.

Therefore, you can generate demand for your own brand by using structured data.

Structured Data and Voice Assistants

With Speakable Schema Markup it’s possible to prompt answers within the Google Assistant, which are fetched from website content, thus making the content prone to be reused within Google Assistants.

Now it’s possible also to claim Actions from the structured data provided from the content of a website, which makes it possible to build custom experiences within the voice assistants.

All the above is possible by enabling within the structured data, the Linked Open Data Standard, and create your Knowledge Graph.

If you want to learn more, download the full presentation by Andrea Volpini.

 

How to integrate WordLift Semantic tracking with Google Analytics via Google Tag Manager

How to integrate WordLift Semantic tracking with Google Analytics via Google Tag Manager

Semantic Web Analytics is a powerful feature that was introduced with Wordlift 3.20 which allows you to better track your content and understand your audience. With the help of this feature, you can track entity usage across pages which in turn allows you to uncover the topics your visitors are interested in (thus you need to write more on those topics) and the topics which are not that popular among visitors.

If enabled, WordLift will send the Semantic Web data directly to your Google Analytics, which is perfectly fine if you have the Google Analytics tracking installed directly on the site or via a plugin. However, if your Google Analytics tracking is installed via Google Tag Manager, the default integration will not work so a custom integration via GTM will have to be performed.

Luckily, integrating the semantic entity tracking via GTM is really easy (as you will see below) so you don’t need to hire a Google Analytics expert for this.

To integrate semantic web analytics via Google Tag Manager you need to do 5 things:

  1. Enable “Analytics Settings” in WordLift plugin;
  2. Create the “Entity Type” and “Entity URI” custom dimensions in Google Analytics;
  3. Add the required variables in Google Tag Manager;
  4. Create the trigger to fire the GTM entity tag;
  5. Create the tag which sends the event with the entity data to Google Analytics.

Enabling “Analytics Settings” in WordLift plugin

In your WordPress dashboard, navigate to WordLift / Settings / Analytic Settings and enable the analytic settings.

Enable analytics settings WordLift

Creating the “Entity Type” and “Entity URI” custom dimensions in Google Analytics

After you have enabled analytics settings in WordLift, you need to go to the admin area of your Google Analytics account, and under property settings, click on “Custom dimensions”.

create_entity_type_URL_Google_AnalyticsIn there, you need to create 2 custom dimensions with the scope set to “Hit” type. In our example we have named the custom dimensions “Entity URI” and “Entity Type”.

Custom dimensions entity_type and entity_URL

Adding the required variables in Google Tag Manager

After creating the custom dimensions in Google Analytics, we need to create the variables which we will use to pass data from WordLift to Google Tag Manager and from there, to Google Analytics.

In total, in this step we need to create the following variables: wl_event_action, wl_event_category, wl_event_label, wl_event_value, wl_event_uri, wl_index_uri, wl_event_type, wl_index_type.

For this, open Google Tag Manager, navigate to “Variables” from the left menu and click on the “New” button.

Create new variables

In the panel that appeared, we need to enter the name of the variable (ex: wl_event_action) and set the variable type as Data Layer variable with the “Data Layer Variable Name” field set to the name of the variable (ex: wl_event_action). After configuring the variables, we need to click on the save button.

We need to repeat this process for all of the variables mentioned above. Next, in the “Google Analytics Settings” variable (if you don’t have one you need to create it), by clicking on “More Settings” (1), open the “Custom dimensions” options (2). In there, click on “+ Add Custom Dimension” button and in the “Index” field, click on the “+” button (3) and select the “wl_index_uri” variable while in the “Dimension Value” field select the “wl_event_uri” variable.

Creating tagsNext, in exactly the same way, add the “wl_index_type” – “wl_event_type” variables in the next custom dimension and click save (4).

Adding custom dimensions

Creating the GTM trigger

After creating the required variables, we need to create a trigger that will fire our entity event tag. For this, navigate to “Triggers” menu and click on “New”.

Creating GTM trigger

A new box will appear and in there, choose the trigger type as “Custom Event” (1) and in the “Event name” field, enter “Mentions”(2). In the “This trigger fires on” section, select “Some Custom Events” (3) and choose “event_action” equals “Mentions” (4). Give the trigger a descriptive name such as “Mentions” (5) and click save (6).

Mentions custom trigger

Creating the entity event tag in GTM

After we have created the variables and trigger, we can create the tag which will send the data to our GA property. For this, in the “Tag” menu, click on “New” and in the panel which appeared, click on the “Tag Configuration” area and select “Google Analytics: Universal Analytics”.

Creating entity tag GTM

After this, set the “Track Type” to “Event”, category to {{wl_event_category}}, action to {{wl_event_action}}, label to {{wl_event_label}} and value to {{wl_event_value}}.

Create tag GTM
We also need to set the “Non-Interaction Hit” option to “true” so that this event would not affect the bounce rate and in the “Google Analytics Settings” section, we need to choose the variable “Google Analytics Settings

In the trigger section of the tag we need to select the “Mentions” trigger which we created earlier.

After saving the tag, you can enable the preview and debug mode to check if the tag is firing correctly and if data is being sent to Google Analytics. If everything is working fine, you can go ahead and publish the container.

With this integration, you will be able to track page entities in Google Analytics, both as events and as custom dimensions. Later, you will be able to view and analyze the data either in the “Events” report from Google Analytics or if you want to take your reporting and analysis to the next level, you can use Google Data Studio and import this beautiful dashboard created by Martin Reichhart from Salzburgerland.

 

Tricia helps business owners and online marketers to get a better understanding of their marketing efforts and how users are using their website. She does this with the help of her Google Analytics audit which outlines the current state of tracking installed on the site and the ways it can be improved in order to enable business owners and marketers to make better decisions about their marketing efforts.

Tricia Borg

Tracking Expert, Analytics Help

Rich Snippets on Google’s SERP you can Obtain in 2019

Rich Snippets on Google’s SERP you can Obtain in 2019

Rich snippets and other features that you can obtain on Google’s SERP using the schema markup in 2019

Within the past 10 years, the appearance and function of Google’s SERP have drastically changed with the inclusion of several rich snippets and SERP features that provide additional functionalities for users and adds challenges for SEO experts. 

In fact, these rich snippets provide unique opportunities to increase CTRs as well as lower opportunities of appearing on the SERP with a simple blue link. This guide will introduce you to the various forms of rich snippets you can find on the SERP and then will focus on using structured data to optimize your content for rich snippets.

Let’s start with the basics…

What are Rich Snippets and SERP Features and why they are important?

When you search for Neil Armstrong on Google, you will receive different results both in the form of snippets and blue links. What distinguishes a rich snippet from a normal one is that a rich snippet is a specialized form of search result that is tailored for a particular task or function rather than a simple blue link.

In this example, you can see a Knowledge Card about Neil Armstrong, a collection of movies about him, a group of people who are usually searched together with this astronaut, and a series of Top News which refer to this search.

SERP result displaying rich snippets of Neil Armstrong

Other examples include: the movie schedule for a given cinema when searching for movies in your area. When searching for a chocolate cake, a photo, item description, nutritional information and recipes pop-up.

What makes rich snippets important in SEO is that now, these snippets have become more important than the regular blue links. Rich snippets are more engaging as they can contain pictures, highlighted information and links more closely associated with the search terms. In addition, they are viewed as both more trustworthy and convenient as not only does the content stand out from the other search results, but it is far more likely to be much more closely associated with the official content such as an official website and social media.

An Important Note on Structured Data

Much of these rich snippets require the development of structured data to fully utilize their benefits. Structured data is an on-page markup that adds additional information to your website and provides it to users seeking relevant information on the SERP. It utilizes HTML coding and Schema markup to communicate with the search engine regarding your content. 

Here is what Google states on its introductory guide to structured data:

Google uses structured data that it finds on the web to understand the content of the page, as well as to gather information about the web and the world in general.

In this article, you will find more specific information on how to optimize your content for each type of rich snippet using structured data. 

We at WordLift can help you develop structured content for your website, not only to be on the Google SERP, but to appear in the newer, much more engaging content found in rich snippets. We’ll go through the types and uses of much of this data using the schema markup. If you’re wanting more specific uses of structured data or how best to utilize it for your content, we’re always happy to provide our services and assistance.

Localized Content Marketing for Local Businesses – What You Can Blog About

Localized Content Marketing for Local Businesses – What You Can Blog About

If you own a local business you may have been wondering how you can direct the right customers to your website. You might be looking into localized content marketing but you’re just not sure where to start or what sort of content to provide. You’ve probably even heard that you should be blogging, right?

In this article, we’re going to be talking about why localized content marketing for businesses is so important, and we’ll be sharing some ideas you can use to attract your ideal customers to your blog.

So many local businesses still overlook the power of localized content marketing. But you won’t! By getting your content strategy in place now, you can stay strides ahead of your local competition.

Why do local businesses need a localized content marketing strategy?

You might be wondering why your local business would need a localized content marketing strategy when the majority of your customers are already locals. Especially if they know you through reputation or word of mouth. Well, I’ll ask you this… Wouldn’t you like more customers? 

It’s important that your business can be found easily online. 72% of consumers who performed a local search visited a store within five miles and 28% of those visits ended in a purchase. So, it pays to be seen in the SERPs.

Here are just a few benefits of having a local content marketing strategy:

  • You can reach even more people in your local area
  • You’ll build trust and familiarity with people who may not have previously heard of your business
  • You can be more easily identified by visitors or newcomers to your local area.
  • You’ll improve your domain authority and SEO
  • It’s a great opportunity to build your email list among local people
  • It increases engagement with your ideal customer and keeps you in the forefront of their minds
  • It means you can retarget local readers with social media ads
  • You’ll have content to share on your platforms
  • You can build internal links for on-page SEO through your blogs
  • Websites with a blog have 434% more indexed pages and generate up to 126% more leads

If that hasn’t not convinced you, there’s nothing that will. 

Bonus tip: A good content strategy drives traffic to your website. If you don’t already have a self hosted site with your own domain name, now is the time to get one so your business can be more professional and memorable.

What should a local business blog about?

The key to writing blog posts that attract local people is either creating content that will specifically interest locals, such as things related to the City or the town your business operates in, or creating content around popular keywords that people in your area are searching for.

While keywords are important, it’s even more important to create engaging content that your ideal customers will want to read and share with their friends. So, let’s take a look at some things you can blog about…

Share your story

This one is a great idea for your first blog post. Introduce yourself, your business and share your story. How did you get started? What makes you different? Do you have any funny anecdotes about your business journey? 

Stories like this humanise your brand, making your business feel more friendly, positive and approachable. Which is exactly the type of business local shoppers appreciate.

Your expertise

It is likely that you are more knowledgeable about your field of business than most of your customers. Share your expertise with your audience by blogging about things that they might find useful, such as ‘how to’ guides, or posts that offer solutions to problems they might have. 

If you are a cleaning company, share your knowledge about how to remove mold, clean at the end of a tenancy, or make an oven look new again. 

A person searching for these tips online is likely to need the services of a cleaner. Even if they don’t need anything but advice from you now, you’ll be in the forefront of their minds when they do.

Share the success story of one of your customers

Share before and after pictures of a project you have been working on. If you are a builder or decorator, it could be a renovation project. If you are a hairdresser, the customer who’s look you’ve drastically changed. And gardeners could share before and after pictures of landscaping projects.

Top 10 Best In your City

Create a list of 10 of the best shops/restaurants/events/art galleries in your city. The key here is not to list your direct competitors, but other local businesses that your customers would find useful. So, if you run a wedding venue, list the top 10 florists in the area. 

People love to celebrate their local area. These kinds of posts help them do just that. And, you have the added benefit that the businesses you mention are likely to share your content on their social media channels or reciprocate by including your business in their future content.

Interviews with local experts

We’re talking local heroes, business owners working in related fields, academics and researchers. Anyone who has something relevant to say that your audience will care about. 

Thinking back to our cleaning company, something their audience would find useful is an interview with local estate agents about ‘end of tenancy cleaning mistakes people often make’. 

Local events and activities – What’s on this month in *Your City*

Create a list of events and activities in your area. This is the type of blog post that is likely to get lots of shares on social media from locals. You can capitalize on this by inviting them to like your page, including your business’s details in the post, or placing links to your key landing pages.

Final Thoughts

Digital marketing is an important part of your business, regardless of whether you are a global or local brand. Localized Content marketing can be a great way to organically reach new customers. It’s easy to get started, so all local businesses should be taking advantage of this strategy to stay ahead of their competitors. With the right approach, you will soon start to see your ROI rise and watch your business continue to grow.

If you’re interested in more details about content marketing or would like to find new ways to improve your localized content marketing, check out Emil Kristensen’s article on How to Create Smart Content to Improve Your Marketing Strategy.

 

Jodie is a Creative Copywriter, SEO enthusiast and graduate of the University of Cambridge. She’s been generating profit with her words for over a decade. In her 10-year non-profit fundraising career, she raised over £2million for NPOs through face-to-face sales, management and expert training. She writes copy that inspires action and loves to help ethical and creative business owners, solopreneurs and non-profits find their voice and get ahead online. 

Jodie Manners

Freelance Copywriter

Turn on the engagement rate of your website with WordLift

Turn on the engagement rate of your website with WordLift

Increasing your Engagement Rate

Optimizing your site to appear among the first search results and intercept new users interested in your content is only part of the job: because once they’ve landed on your pages, it is important that your visitors feel encouraged to stay and increase their engagement on your website.

The engagement rate represents a key factor for all the companies and publishers wanting to establish a deep connection with users. The aim being to consolidate and increase interactions on their site.

The engagement rate is also one of the values ​​that Google takes into account to understand the relevance of a site in relation to the users’ research intent. Therefore, we are talking about an essential piece of the puzzle in achieving success with your SEO strategy.

So, the longer a user spends his time on your site, the better chance you will have of seeing your content emerge within Google’s search results.

In terms of content, this means building a strategy aimed at creating the perfect environment to keep your users’ engagement rate high. How can this be done?

The WordLift team has developed a new release of their plugin, enriched with new features that will help make your content more meaningful and interactive. This is in order to give your users a better experience and increase the engagement rate of your website.

The new release allows:

  • For users: to access your content and easily browse between different levels of information (from entities to related pages) without having to leave your website and make new searches.
  • For your business: to increase user interactions with your website, taking advantage of customizable features, which will improve the quality of the user experience and your engagement rate.

Let’s see what’s new in WordLift 3.22!

Context Cards allow users to learn more about your content in a smart way

We’ve created the Context Cards to allow your users to deepen your content in a simple and meaningful way. It is now possible to read and preview the entities annotated in your pages, simply by placing the cursor over the highlighted words.

This implementation turns your pages into interactive and metadata-rich environments: in a nutshell, you can make your users and search engines happy in one go! Let’s see how.

Context card on this webpage

One of the context cards on this page

Context cards allow your users to access the different levels of information within in your content, without having to carry out further research or take too many unnecessary steps to explore the topics they are interested in.

You can also optimize your Context Cards with extensive and captivating texts and images to enhance the level of user interest and increase their interaction rate on your website.

This process turns into an actual SEO strategy, which focuses on the quality of the user experience as an indispensable value for search engines.

Do you want a concrete example? I am a Context Card!

A new customizable navigator for your related articles

The WordLift navigator is one of the most popular features of our plugin, so we worked to make it more effective and customizable.

With the WordLift 3.22 release you can:

  • Customize the style of the navigator template.
  • Choose the navigator title.
  • Divide the navigator into two blocks, to be placed in different spots of the content.
navigator blocks

On Windows Report, two navigator blocks with an advertisement between them.

The improvement of the navigator will allow you to highlight related content, encouraging users to visit more pages and creating a smooth and engaging browsing experience.

To summarize

The implementation of the Context Cards and navigator will help you optimize your website and enrich your SEO strategy in order to:

  • Improve the quality of your content and user experience.
  • Increase the time spent by users on your site.
  • Help Google detect the relevance of your content.

If you want to create smart and interactive content to improve the engagement rate of your website... you're in the right place!

Try WordLift for free for two weeks!

Stand out on search in 2019. Get 50% off WordLift until January 7th Buy Now!

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