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The Knowledge Graph (aka. Knowledge Panel) is one of the most popular SERP features offered by Google. I am sure, all of you are seeing this several times each day even so you might now know about it’s name. This Search Engine Result Page (SERP) feature is also the most important one and still the biggest since the Google Ads space vanished from the right side of the search results. Below you can see a more or less typical example for a Knowledge Graph integration (red frame).

Knowledge Graph for the search term "cloud" in Google

The Knowledge Graph is filled with extracted semantic data from the web as well as information provided by human editors. For most people or sites to have their own is most likely far out of reach. But for SEO it’s still good to know that there exist various types of graphs on a search results page. It’s prime real estate on every SERP as users can instantaneously access hyper-relevant information without having to leave the Google universe.

Where that data is coming from

One of the questions I am asked the is where the data actually comes from. As mentioned above, parts of it can be user edited by Google staff. But other, known sources are:

  • Wikipedia
  • WikiData
  • Freebase
  • CIA World Factbook (for country specific information)
  • Google MyBusiness (for local results)
  • Google Images
  • Structured data on your website on e.g. company data
  • Incoming Links or Backlinks to your website
  • Human reviewed and edited content based on whether you claimed your graph but also based on change requests Google might have received via the “feedback button” below each graph.

Different versions of knowledge graphs

For different search requests, Google provides us with different Knowledge Graph manifestations.

The Standard Graph

Graph for brands like Coca-Cola
Standard Knowledge Graph provided for brands like Coca-Cola.

In case there is a standard, it’s more likely that this knowledge graph shown above can be called a standard. Searching for a brand like “Coca-Cola” you get some basic information about the company but also about the drink from Wikipedia and other sources.

The Company Graph

Another, quite common graph that you will get to see very often appears as soon as you are searching for a company name or brand. In my case I used the reinsurance company Munich Re which is based in my hometown and that I’ve been working for for several years.

Munich Re, insurance company for reinsurances
This shows up when you search for “Munich Re”.

One interesting thing to mention here is: Google is listing their LinkedIn Profile as well as their Twitter Profile, as well as their current revenue, stock price, subsidiaries, their headquaters location, their CEO and an excerpt from Wikipedia but also other (re-)insurance companies users have been searching for. For some reasons the social media profiles for Coca-Cola does not show up in their search result.

The famouse people (no actors!) graph

All information about Bill Gates
Go to Google and search for “Bill Gates”.

What a massive result for a single person (still not long enough for the things that follow). You can get as much information as important from this graph. You can see all social media profiles of Bill Gates, Books he has writting, again, other famouse persons people have been searching for, quotes he said or wrote as well as some general information from Wikipedia as well as a link to his private website. This knowledge graph hasn’t been claimed by anyone so far… but believe me – you would not be able to claim it as long as you aren’t Bill Gates.

The Actors and actresses Graph

Graph for Robert De Niro.
Result presented by Google when you search for “Robert De Niro”.

Here we get some different information, so Google is able to understand the “entity” actor or actress very well. We get a list of some movies he acted in, information about his kids and spouse(s), upcoming movies, when and where he was born, etc..

The movies Graph

the longest graph I was able to find appeard for movies
It’s all about the movies ツ

This is one of the largest knowledge graphs that I was able to find during my research. I guess there are just too many search requests for movies online so Google decided to put that much emphasis on it. The most interesthing things is the reviews section inside of this graph, which makes it really unique.

The bands Graph

Graph for bands and musicians
Bands and Musicians get their own space.

Text for bands

The Science Graph

Knowledge Graph for scientific things
A scientific knowledge graph provided by Google.

Science is knowledge and knowledge is power. That’s maybe the reason why there are knowledge graphs around common topics or special interest search requests (like you can see here around “chemistry”).

The Country Graph

Graph for countries and continents
This is what appears when you search for “South America”.

It’s not the only graph that shows us a map, because there are still local listings that are occasionally hidden inside a Knowledge Graph. Due to Google Flights and location based information, Google is able to tell how long it will take you to get to the continent or country from your location.

Special interest Knowledge Graphs

The Nutrition Graph

It's all about nutritional facts here.
Search for (any) food and you get the nutrition values.

This is an interesting Knowledge Graph as it shows the nutrition values of almost any kind of food to the users directly within the SERPs. You can even change to other variations with a dropdown provided in the search results to e.g. a different type of donut.

The Local Search Graph

Local Listing within Google Search Result Pages
Typical local listing with some extensions from Google Shopping thanks to structured data usage.

This so called “Local Listing” is one of the most important knowledge graphs for any retailer, gym or store with a physical location. This is where you usually can really outsmart your competitors by owning more generic search requests like “gym new york” or “furniture store munich”. That’s where we get some music into our SEO performance and loads of click throughs if done properly.

Knowledge Graph, Backlinks and Traffic Impact

So now we are talking about the important stuff for SEO. How huge is the impact on your traffic coming from organic search results? Well, that depends. If we keep talking about local listings (which are informational) you will see more likely some foot traffic, but combined with Google Shopping ads and well written structured data as in the example above, you’ll be able to see some tremendous results in sales.

With other graph results you might not gain that much of a direct impact on your traffic. But neither nor, you are able to get your brand or your name out there for free if done right! So don’t miss the chance on that.

Last Updated On September 02, 2019