Ever wonder what that box is on the right hand side of the Google search results page? First introduced in 2012, it’s known as the Knowledge Graph and it forms part of Google’s attempt to better respond to search queries by understanding context and intent. Ideally, the Knowledge Graph provides the searcher with the information she is seeking without forcing her to click on a website on the results page. For brands, it also provides a window into that brand, practice, or company and gives searchers links for further information. For some industries, like the restaurant industry, it returns a list of restaurants in the area. As the Knowledge Graph becomes an increasingly important component of the search engines results page, it will also become an increasingly important facet to any digital marketing strategy.
Google’s Knowledge Graph is a work in progress, and you can come to expect a lot of adjustments to how it works and what information is displayed. In a recent change, Google has contextualized Knowledge Graphs by giving the searcher’s physical location more weight in determining the results that show up in the box (or whether a box shows up at all).
Your Business, Local Search, and the Knowledge Graph
If you own a business, you may be part of this Knowledge Graph in that if a user searches for the name of your practice or business they may get a box with information about your business in it. This includes a small snippet of information on the practice or business, along with its physical address, a map, links to reviews and social media accounts, among other things. Let’s say that your practice has a Knowledge Graph; does it show up for everybody, everywhere? As it turns out, your location — the city, or even neighborhood, you’re searching from — also plays a role in generating that box.
Case I — Here is a search for “Now Media Group” with the location set to San Diego on the first try and New York on the second:
Case II — here are the results for “J Price McNamara” with one location set for Baton Rouge (where his physical office is located) and one set for San Diego:
If your business or practice has a physical location, the Knowledge Graph is more likely to show up for patients or customers in those areas than for non-local searchers. For dental practices, which provide services to local patients, this is a good thing. It means that Google is better matching your practice to prospective patients. Some businesses, however, sell their services online to a wider geographic area. In these cases, the effects of this Knowledge Graph change are more ambiguous, since it can affect how non-local searchers find your brand.
The good news is that Google seems to be able to differentiate between local and non-local businesses. Here are San Diego results for an internet-based law firm with a physical location in Kansas, but with country-wide clients:
The challenge is figuring out how to communicate to Google the nature of your firm. This isn’t always straightforward, since even Google can be cryptic about these details. Fortunately, at Now Media Group you have a team of experts at your disposal to execute a digital marketing strategy that fits your business like a glove.
Learn More About How the Knowledge Graph Impacts Your Business
The modern world is one of fast-paced change and in the digital industries this is doubly true. Keeping up with updates to the technologies you use to market your practice or your business can be difficult when you have other things on your plate, like your business. Now Media Group is here to help you. Should you have any questions or concerns about Google’s Knowledge Graph or about any other aspect of your marketing strategy, give our team of marketing consultants a call at 858-240-4544.