We are hearing a lot more about the semantic Web lately and skin care business owners should pay attention. This collaborative movement led by the World Wide Web Consortium promotes common data formats throughout the Web. Web pages will someday include semantic content, forming a web of data that can be shared across applications, communities, and enterprises. Scholars are exploring the social potential that the semantic Web holds for the business sector including the skin care industry.
Google has been hinting of moving into a new era regarding search and as a start, began rolling out the Knowledge Graph last year. This tool links different sets of search results based on the contextual meanings of search terms, provides topic summaries and key facts, and offers information boxes based on related queries. No longer is the search engine relying only on keyword mentions and link graphs when attempting to understand the relevance and hierarchy of topics.
The semantic Web will shake up search in a different way. It focuses on the intent of the searcher, providing results that include metadata regarding an entity. Open-ended search phrases will yield a wealth of information as search engines attempt to understand why people are looking for particular information. Data sources will reveal the personal preferences and habits of searchers and results will reflect an array of options to guide a search in different directions.
Operating as part of the semantic Web, search engines will present all the information people need without the requirement to continually search for it. Data organization is the foundation of this endeavor. Through strategic acquisitions, Google is already developing the data and structure to create entities of knowledge.
Facts regarding relationships between objects and in-search information regarding places, people, and things are the points on the semantic map. Business marketers must ensure that their companies are associated, or mapped, with relevant entities. With Penguin, Google is forcing sites to remove irrelevant links, making it easier for the search engine to determine relevancy. View this as a helpful move rather than one that relegates the business site to oblivion.
The semantic Web represents a huge structural change to the way businesses will market themselves. Companies within the skin care industry can prepare for this by integrating semantic association into their daily processes. Thinking laterally, taking advantage of schema opportunities, integrating metadata into search, and solving problems for target audiences are a few recommended moves.
*Photo Courtesy of Duncan Hull via Creative Commons License