Google recently rolled out an update to their search engine called the Knowledge Graph. The knowledge graph aims to improve a users experience by helping them discover new information quickly and easily. The knowledge graph takes into account the fact that when you search for a phrase, you are not just searching for a combination of words but you are searching for things – people, landmarks, celebrities, cities, sports teams, buildings, geographical features, movies, celestial objects, works of art, etc. By focusing on “things rather than strings”, Google hopes to help you find the information you need more quickly. By using the collective intelligence of the web the search engine can begin to understand the world a bit more like people do.
So what does all of this have to do with small business? While I am sure there will be much speculation to come about how all of this will effect SEO, I think the real lesson is Google’s focus on continually improving the experience of their users (customers). For their search engine, this means helping you find what you are looking for as quickly and easily as possible.
Does your small business have that type of focus? Do you continually look for ways to help your customers solve the problems you help them with faster and easier? I know I can always improve in this area.
One of the features of the knowledge graph update is a mechanism to ask the user what they meant by a seemingly ambiguous phrase. If you search for “Taj Mahal” you may have meant the monument, the singer, or the casino – so the search engine will ask you which you meant (click on image to enlarge)
Small business owners don’t need a team of Google engineers to build feedback mechanisms to help them improve their products and services. Sometimes we can get bogged down in all of the different and complicated ways we can solve a question when all we really need to do is ask questions.
Let’s all take a cue from Google and work to ask questions and collect feedback to help us continually improve how we serve our customers.
If you are interested in learning more about the Knowledge Graph, watch this quick video from the folks at Google.