Google's Knowledge Graph

What is the Knowledge Graph?

The Knowledge Graph is a huge body of data sourced from a variety of trusted sources on the internet:

  • Wikidata (which now includes Freebase data)
  • The CIA World Factbook
  • Wikipedia

"Things, Not Strings"

The Knowledge Graph is built on a few key concepts. Google is seeking to understand the meaning behind words, not just the queries ("strings" of words) in themselves. It's also seeking to answer questions for users within the SERP, which is why you might get all sorts of different Knowledge Graph results in the SERP.

Some of the most well-recognized types are:

  • Carousels appear at the top of the SERP. They're often seen for sports teams or movies and are used to display individual mini profiles for a group of items that's related. For a football player, it might have his name and a few stats, and then the same for his teammates.
  • Panels appear to the right of the organic listings, especially for brands. They include a short description of the brand, the logo, related brands, social profiles and other noteworthy information. They may also appear for other topics, such as biographical profiles.
  • Answer boxes provide a small bit of scraped information within the SERP. These are especially common as answers to questions. Publishers and content creators contend these results lower CTR to their websites, and they're probably right in a lot of cases.

Own Your Brand's Knowledge Graph Result

First, a caveat: while you can implement the right markup, Google doesn't have to respect it or include the marked-up data in the SERP. However, if you do implement the markup, you have a better chance at getting it included in the SERP.

There are three elements Google says you can influence if you're a webmaster for your site:

In order to customize these three elements, you simply need to implement the respective markup in the page source on any crawlable page on your site.

Once you've implemented the markup, go ahead and test it with Google's structured data testing tool.