So what does it really mean? Why do I think this is SOOOOOOO important?
Well first of all because Google thinks it is. Secondly and most importantly - your business will be affected by these changes.
Google has come out with some major changes in the last 9 months:
1. Google Launches Google+ - this allows people using Google services to connect. And provides "Profile Data" of its users
2. Google signs on to Schema Data - this allows site to better categorize data on their site so search engines know what it is. Things like a businesses proper Name, Address and Phone number.
3. Google Launches Business Pages - allowing businesses to add data about their business directly into the Google+ system. It also allows you to verify your business website making a site your "official" site in the eyes of Google.
4. Google launches Search Plus Your World - allowing you to see what your friends recommend.
5. Search Plus Your World results being given priority - anything Google gives priority placement on its page to is important to them
Now today the WSJ releases the article above. And now the term everyone will be talking about is "Semantic Search" - which is basically: "seeks to improve search accuracy by understanding searcher intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in the searchable dataspace, whether on the Web or within a closed system, to generate more relevant results."
Now re-read this: "Amit Singhal, a top Google search executive, said in a recent interview that the search engine will better match search queries with a database containing hundreds of millions of "entities"—people, places and things—which the company has quietly amassed in the past two years. Semantic search can help associate different words with one another, such as a company (Google) with its founders..."Emphasis is mine.......
Google is amassing its own database of information about people, places and things.....this data will become the "master database". This only makes sense. Google will trust more the data it has and the data it has confirmed. It will feature that data and give it more "voice".
This is a force that we can not fight. The changes are happening. You can see it in the changes they have been making.
If the data Google has collected is incorrect or if you ignore their quest for data, then your business bottom line will directly suffer.
You must make sure that every data location Google gives you the ability to have, is claimed and correct. Google Places, Google+, Google Profile all these must be claimed and filled out completely. Your website needs verified, you need to use author mark-up. Your website needs to include Schema Tags.
There's so much you need to do as a business to not only be found but to protect yourself. It's a must to get these things done, before everyone else in your industry does. It's a free business advantage to go ahead do this, but soon it will be a severe handicap if it is not done.
Google Semantic Search changes the game.........get ahead of the curve and take advantage of the opportunity you have, instead of waiting to be hit by the next new media tsunami.