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SEMANTIC CONNECTIVITY AND CO-OCCURENCE

Semantic search is something I’ve been interested in ever since Google first started displaying relevant search suggestions in their SERPs (search engine result pages).  Semantic search is basically using language, meaning and relationships between words to understand the intent of the searcher. On a basic level I believe that Google and other search engines may be looking for words they expect to see on a page aside from the exact keyword phrase match to determine relevancy. For example, if you had a blog about football that you hope to rank on the first page of Google for the search query ‘football’, Google may expect to see words or phrases such as NFL, sports, Indianapolis Colts, soccer, touchdown, etc.

If your website contains the word ‘football’ hundreds of times throughout your website, but does not see other likely keywords related to this keyword, then they may assume you are not as relevant as other websites containing the keyword ‘football’.

An example of this is if you conduct a search on Google for ‘AROD’. Google will bold ‘AROD’ as well as ‘Alex Rodriguez’ in the titles and descriptions of the SERP listings. This proves that Google recognizes that these words have a relationship.

Semantic Search Example AROD

Semantic Search Example AROD

This further supports the theory that keyword consistency and topical relevancy are more important than keyword density. The point is that you want to write original content that reads well, contains your main keywords a few times throughout the content, and incorporate other phrases one may expect to see relating to those keywords.

This is good news for everyone in and out of the SEO industry. Who wants to write or read keyword stuffed content? We all want more relevant search results.

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