Google Announces the Knowledge Graph – A Major Change to Search

Google today announced a major shift in the way it looks at search. Instead of focusing on keywords and phrases, the search engine will try to "think" more like a human.

The example they offer on their blog is the search phrase “Taj Mahal.” Instead of the search engine using those two words, they are trying to find a deeper meaning in what the user may be looking for. Google is trying tap into the real-world intelligence of the web to understand if you're searching for the famous monument, the renowned singer, the casino or maybe your favorite Indian restaurant.

From Google’s Blog:

“The Knowledge Graph enables you to search for things, people or places that Google knows about—landmarks, celebrities, cities, sports teams, buildings, geographical features, movies, celestial objects, works of art and more—and instantly get information that’s relevant to your query. This is a critical first step towards building the next generation of search, which taps into the collective intelligence of the web and understands the world a bit more like people do.”

You can find the entire article over at the Google Blog, along with a breakdown of exactly how the Knowledge Graph works. Obviously this is another shift in the way we’ll need to think about search optimization as a publisher. What are your thoughts about the Knowledge Graph? Will it help or hurt small businesses?