SEO On-Air: Google Knowledge Graph Hacks For Small Businesses

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In this episode, we cover:

Today, we speak to Alan Bush, the VP of Strategy at Ignite Visibility. He’s also an instructor of SEO & Web Analytics at the University of California, San Diego. 

In this episode, Alan speaks about Google Knowledge graph hacks for small businesses.

Stay tuned for the next podcast episode, where our guest, Jake Fox, discusses SEO Jargon Busters 2020

Show notes

[02:23-04:22]  How does knowledge graph panel work?

[04:25-09:10] Is there any hack to improve the chances of getting featured on the knowledge graph?

[09:35-12:37] Are people are using this HTTPs version of their website?

[12:39-17:06] Is the first step to getting on the knowledge graph panel is to get the SEO basics right?

[17:10-21:07] How did you manage to pull out “SEO: the movie,”?

[22:54-26:30] Is there a correlation between structured data, the knowledge panel, and featured snippet?

Show Notes Explanation

Hello guys, welcome to another episode of SEO On-Air. This is Senthil and today we have with us Alan Bush. He is the VP of Strategy at Ignite Visibility and he’s also an instructor of SEO & Web Analytics at the University of California, San Diego. He is also a public speaker and has a special interest in social media marketing.

Alan co-created and co-hosted two premiere internet marketing podcasts, and co-host and produced two additional podcasts. His previous experience ranges from administrative to data coordination to financial analysis to sales.

In today’s podcast, we’ll discuss with Alan, Google Knowledge graph hacks for small businesses.

Time Stamp: 01:06-02:21

Senthil: We strongly believe that post the COVID situation, there’s going to be lots of new companies coming up. It’d be ideal for them to know what a knowledge graph is.

Alan: Knowledge graph appears above the organic listings in many cases, so we call it ranking 0. However, if you get the information in the knowledge graph, you may not want to click on any website on the search listing. So there’s a discrepancy whether or not it is beneficial because it affects the click-through rates of sites.

 Time Stamp: 02:23-04:22

Senthil: These days, there are quite a lot of knowledge graph panels, isn’t it, Alan? How do these actually work? Does it depend on whether you have a Wikipedia page or not?

Alan:  It’s funny how Google says not to copy data, but Google itself picks up data from websites and displays it on the knowledge graph. But it doesn’t necessarily have to be from a Wikipedia page.

If you write a lot of quality articles and blog posts in your niche and cover topics in-depth, your content might be displayed in the knowledge graph too.

Therefore, for a medical knowledge graph, Wikipedia might not be a reliable source for information, since it may pick up information from a reputable site like WebMD.

If you are a reliable resource and a thought leader in your niche, then Google will pick up the data from your page.

Time Stamp: 04:25-09:10

Senthil: I understand that there are many websites from where the knowledge graph can pick up information, so is there any hack to improve the chances of getting featured on the knowledge graph?

Alan: Yes, I think traditional SEO really helps. The four pillars of SEO, i.e., the site architecture, quality of backlinks, the content on the website, and code optimization, make up the most of website optimization, which can help you appear on the knowledge graph.

I’ve also noticed that Google considers some websites more important than others, such as Wikipedia, Wikidata, and Freebase. I noticed that links that were linking from those websites were redirects.

So if you have links from these sites, make sure they are direct links. I think it essential that whatever sources you’re getting links from, what we refer to as citations, are clearly representing your URL.

Time Stamp: 09:35-12:37

Senthil: I’m pretty sure many people are using this HTTPs version of the website. Am I right, Alan?

Alan: Yeah, right. As you know, HTTPs is a more secure version. However, some people just forget to switch over to it. My recommendation is that you don’t just rely on redirects because it is like taking a detour every time you visit a website.

Senthil: I believe that the non-www version to www version could also be an important thing to consider?

Alan: I think people have to be aware that SEO is not a series of fixes, but it is more about making it easier for search engines to digest the information. If you optimize for the search engines, they’ll reward you by putting you in the knowledge graph frequently.

Time Stamp: 12:39-17:06

Senthil: I think the first step to getting on the knowledge graph panel is to get the SEO basics right. Am I right?

Alan: Yeah. I always tell my class that you can audit websites even without tools if you know the basics. If you want quality backlinks and your content to rank, you have first to fix your site structure. I’ve noticed that if your content is presented in bullet points, the chances of it appearing in the knowledge graph actually increases.

Time Stamp: 17:10-21:07

Senthil: Wow, that’s a lot of insights. No wonder Ignite Visibility is one of the leading SEO agencies in the US. This is why we love bringing in people like you.

By the way, guys, if you are aware of “SEO: the movie,” these guys have done it. I want to Alan, how you guys have managed it?

Alan: John Lincoln is one of the best people I’ve worked with. He is a pioneer in the industry. He brought it up early on that he wanted to do a movie on SEO, and I was very impressed with the idea. A lot of people were interested in being a part of it like Barry Shwartz, Rand Fishkin & Danny Sullivan.

Through this movie, John wanted to tell people what SEO is, how did it start, and how did it evolve into an industry. John also did “Social Media: the movie,” so I think he’ll pick up all the individual SEO services and do a movie on them as well.

Time Stamp: 21:09-24:53

Senthil: Great! It’s nice to feel a part of the community with “SEO: the movie.” Initially, we thought that the movie is going to talk about black-hat techniques and all, but later we realized that it speaks about the positive side of SEO.

Alan: Yeah, when I talk about SEO, I want to tell my students things that are true. I believe in a strategy that we need to pioneer to get desirable results. One more thing I want to mention is that the knowledge graph pulls information from the schema.

Schema tells the search engines what your content is about. When search engines understand that, they pull the information to display in the knowledge graph.

Another tip I want to share is that if you use tools like SEMRush, you can try this feature in their keyword research tool that tells you which keywords are likely to appear in the rich snippet. You can target those keywords and address related queries to increase your chances of appearing in the knowledge panel.

Time Stamp: 22:54-26:30

Senthil: So, there’s definitely a correlation between structured data, the knowledge panel, and featured snippet. Probably a few years down the line, it is going to be all about structured data.

Alan: Absolutely. I stress the importance of the structure of your content as well. Make sure you’re providing information in your content that is adding value to your readers. Think of your website as writing a term paper for a professor. In this case, the professor is Google. So, create lists, cite your sources, and provide all the resources that can improve the user experience.

Senthil: Alan, I think people can take away a lot from this podcast. It was fun speaking to you, and I’d like to thank you for spending your valuable time with us.

Meet the speakers

Alan Bush

VP of Strategy – Ignite Visibility

Senthil Kumar

VP Marketing –
Stan Ventures