How To Optimize For Semantic Search

Semantic Search is relatively misunderstood. It would seem that after authoring “The Definition of Semantic Search” there wouldn’t be such great debate. This is how the web works though you see, no matter how many times the truth is written, there will still be people with questions.

Is this why Google devised from a Boolean Search Engine to a Semantic Search engine? Probably not, but the simple mindedness of the human race probably is.

As a colleague and Social Media acquaintance — the forensic scientist of Semantic SearchMr. David Amerland, David has given me more insight toward wanting to further study Semantic Search through the Semantic Web and with this article, I would like to further elaborate upon how to optimize your content and blog, for Semantic Search.

Before moving forward, I dedicate this article to David Amerland:

After recently publishing a viral piece on the subject of Semantic Search, it has inspired me to further study Semantics. Before I attempt to enlighten you on how to optimize for semantic search — I feel I should first explain some things, such as the difference between Semantic Search and Semantic Web.

how to optimize for semantic search

We don’t want to confuse the two nor do we want to think they’re the same. Gaining a more clear understanding will help you to better understand how search works and assure you that your content is getting in front of the eyes of a relevant audience.

Semantic Web

The idea behind Semantic Web (brief idea): helping the average searcher to clearly understanding the wholeness of a search engine report page, as opposed to just the structure of a search engine such as Google. After studying a little bit from the Cambridge Semantics reports, it seems that Semantic Web is understanding more than one set of data (small or large) that is storing, and or giving information.

Semantic Web can also be looked at as an algorithmic filter in which doesn’t pull one piece of data from one page. Semantic Web is created via pulling small sets of data from many pages, to compile one complex (or small) answer.

Semantic Search

Some data normally includes textual content such as names, dates and strings. These textual sets can provide enough information to answer questions or provide a “meaning” of something and this meaning can often compile answers to very complex questions.

  1. Semantic Search is more textual focused.
  2. Semantic Web is more data focused.

What makes Semantic Search so interesting to me is the fact that Semantic Search pulls the whole of a data or information from a page, rather than focusing on keyword density. Remember when you could keyword spam an article and increase your keyword density — and easily rank for any search term you wanted to?

Those days are long gone, thanks to Semantic Search. Nowadays instead on focusing on the keyword density of just one page, Google wants to make sure that the entire site is relatively relevant to your main keywords, prior to positioning your site at the top of Google for irrelevant terms.

This helps Google to serve more relevant pages with higher quality content.

The Simplistic Nature of it all:

Semantic Search will take into account the contextual meaning of your search. Instead of Google returning listings that contain the keyword you’ve just typed into Google, Google will now be able to better understand what it is you’re looking for. Google can now more clearly understand assumptions, needs, desires, wants, questions, demands, etc.

Did this Help You To Better Understand?

I hope that the above examples helped you to more clearly understand the difference from Semantic Search and Semantic Web and gain a more clear understanding of the two and how they both work.

Now let’s try and understand how we can use the two to Optimize our content and rank better in the new Google. Sound like fun?

Instead of using keywords to rank, we will now want to start looking for and implementing supporting search terms, search modifiers, and synonyms for the terms you have in mind.

To start optimizing for Semantic Search your goals should be to use those in the context of your content, h1 , h2, h3 and other tags, as well as your title.

Your content should be long-form. Long-form content is lengthy content. The more in-depth and lengthy your content is, the better chance it has to compete in search nowadays.

The longer your content, the longer your visitor will have to remain on your web page and etc. Long form content has so many benefits, not to mention a much better chance of ranking well for “in-depth articles“.

Optimizing Images For Semantic Search:

To optimize your images for Semantic Search, you should include an alt tag the same as you would when optimizing an image for search any other time. Only when optimizing for Semantic Search, try to include more synonyms and more key phrases.

Semantic Search is all about providing a “meaning” for something.

How To Optimize For Semantic Search

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s continue to focus on our content marketing and in 2014 start creating a much better quality content. I see so many of you guys suffering to leverage the success you aim for, while all along it’s right in front of you.

While writing, never stop to think about what you’re writing or when you will stop. Continue writing and don’t ever think about stopping. When you have thousands of words written down, that and that only is a good time to stop and reread what you’ve written and then and only then if you’re comfortable, go ahead with editing.

[Tweet “How to optimize your content for semantic search! via @gregrysmith”]

In Conclusion

Please let me know if you have any questions about Semantic Search. I would like to hear what you have to say in the comments section below. Feel free to help me to spread the word about Semantic Search by clicking the social buttons and sharing this post with your friends!

I plan to continue following and studying David throughout his journey deep within Semantics.

Thank you David

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  1. says


    There is so much different stuff that’s wrote about seamtics that I never know what to believe. Why don’t all of you get together are agree on just one thing.


    • says


      Not sure what you’re referring to, but I’d like to try and help resolve your misunderstanding about Semantic Search, etc if you’d like to talk about it.

      Greg Smith

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