Semantic Search: Why is it matters For SEO in 2021

Nov 12, 2021 | 0 comments

As we know that search engine technology evolved by making semantic search essential for SEO. So, in this blog, discover what it is and why is it matter for SEO.

Many things have changed since 2010. SEO was more concerned about the backlinks and keywords as much as possible.

However, in 2021, its focus is shifted to understanding intent and behavior, as well as the context, Semantic search behind them.

Nowadays, the understanding of search engines has evolved, and we have changed how we optimize for it as a result. Identifying the keywords is no longer enough. Moreover, the reverse engineering content that ranks high is also behind us.

Now, first, you need to understand the keywords, what it means you have to provide brief information that basically contextualizes those keywords, and determinedly understand the user intent.

In an age of semantic search, these things are most important for SEO.   Machine learning and natural language processing help the search engine to understand context and consumers in a better way.

In this blog, you will learn about semantic search. What it is and why is it important? Moreover, you will also learn that how to optimize your content for it.

What is Semantic Search?

Semantic search basically describes the search engine’s effort to generate the Authentic SERP result. It is possible by understanding the context, search intent, and as well as relationship between words.

Importance of Semantic Search

This is important as:

  • People say things and as well as query things in different ways, language, and tones
  • Search queries can be confusing in nature
  • For understanding the relationships between words
  • Relationship between entities and personal choice is important as well

As we know that Google spends a lot of money on patents that are related to it. This basically works when the user search on internet about the queries such as (Top 10 songs of 2021) then Google turn different kinds of the website to the user for visit.

In layman’s terms, semantic search basically refers to seeking a natural language like humans.

For example, if you asked your friend some question let’s suppose you asked him that “what is the largest mammal?” and you will continue to follow the same question that “how big it is?” your friend obviously understand that “it” refers to the mammal: a blue whale.=However, before 2013, search engines were not able enough to understand the second question.

Instead of answering how big is blue whale Google shows the result related to the keywords how big it is.

Nowadays, we see a different result that is actually related to the context behind the question with more extra information.

Basically, semantic search allows Google to differentiate numerous kinds of entities like people, places, and things and interpret them on the basis of different types of factors. These are:

  • User search history
  • location of the user
  • Spelling variation
  • Global search history

This all things basically helps google to reach its goal and provide a better experience to users by delivering quality and as well as giving preferences to relevant content results.

A Brief History of Semantic Search

Knowledge Graph

The knowledge graph of semantic search is introduced in 2012. It was Google’s first step for developing the importance of entities as well as context over strings of keywords. Basically, google phrase it as “things, not strings”.

Basically, the purpose of knowledge graphs is to set the stage for large-scale algorithms for change to come.

As we know that there is a huge amount of database of public information so, the knowledge graph basically collects the data by considering the public domain e.g. distance of the moon as well as properties of each entity like people, occupations.


The update of Google hummingbird is actually rolled out in 2013. It was actually the beginning of the semantic era that we know nowadays.

Basically, hummingbird uses the NLP to ensure that the pages are actually matching with the meaning better instead of matching with only just words. It means that the pages that match better actually the match searcher context and intent will rank better than pages and as well as keywords and nauseam.

Rank brain

Google launches the rank brain in the year 2015. It is a machine learning system that is basically ranking factor as well as smart query analysis AI.

The rank brain is basically just like a hummingbird. They seek to understand the intent of queries. The critical difference between them is to rank brain-machine learning content.

The rank brain is basically always learning and it always analyzes the best search result well it looks at the similarities between pages and shows the pages that are valuable for users.

So, as a result of this rank brain may estimate a page to be a good response to queries even if they can’t understand the exact words from the question.


The abbreviation of BERT is Bidirectional Encoder Representation from Transforms. It was basically introduced by google in 2019. The purpose of this is to focus on the further understanding of the conversation and intent of the content.

BERT basically allows the user that they find valuable information more accurately and easily.

However, according to google, it represents the most significant information over the past five years and as well as one of the greatest in the search history. Moreover, it gives marketers the direction to work with more long-tail theories and as well as more than three content words and ensure user address information.

So, it meant that the SEO specialists basically had to shift their focus on writing for humans with clear and concise content that is easily understandable and readable.

How Does Semantic Search Impact SEO?

The user now turns to voice Search

Semantic search actually rises due to the rise of voice search.

The voice commands in mobile are common nowadays. Approximately 33% of high-income households use mobile devices for voice commands.

Optimizing voice search is basically very different from a traditional type of SEO because you have to direct come to the point and you have to keep your content conversational.

What you can do

Create the content that answers the query at the top of the page in a concise and clear way without any type delving into more details.

Moreover, always make sure to use the structure data so, the search engine can easily understand your content and context.

Focus Shifts from keyword to topics

It is the time where we should stop creating content around keywords. Instead of this, think about the topic that you can cover in-depth as well as the topic must be in the niche.

The major goal is here to create original, comprehensive as well as high-quality resources.

What you can do

Instead of creating a shorter topic focus on creating a guide that contains comprehensive information about the topic and the user can also find it valuable.

Search intent becomes a priority

It is one of the best approaches to not targeting the keywords instead of keyword targeting focusing on intent targeting.

By examining the queries of users you will be able to find and come up with a group of topics that is ideal for building content around.

What you can do

You can make a list of different types of keywords and separate them by user intent.

Once you will understand the user intent then you will start creating content according to the intent of the user around individual keywords and or you will cover the broad topics

Technical SEO matters as much as the content

The algorithms still do not drive enough meaning even from the google transition from string to things.

For Semantic Search You have to optimize your site so Google can understand your content in a better way.


Yes, we can say that the keywords still matter.  so, you must have to use the content analysis tool to find out the question and then use keywords related to them so you can easily incorporate your content. Use the keywords in your title, tags, body, Meta tags, and as well as headers tags. It will be long and fits naturally in the content.

Links building

The authoritative Backlinks still remain one of the most important ranking signals. Prioritize content that attracts the links naturally. Moreover, don’t forget to use an internal link structure. It develops the deep-link to the valuable content you have created.

Structured data

Use schema markup to help the user that they can easily find your business and as well as a search engine can index your site. You can add more details by using organization markup.


Whenever possible try to eliminate the errors and redirects. For missing pages only rely on 301 redirects. Always keep in mind that you should not have more than one redirect per page. For your website also use the rel=canonical tags.

Site speed

For optimizing your site speed follow the google checklist, compress images, minify resources as well as leverage the coaching browser.

Optimize site structure

If you maintain the logical site structure it will helpful for search engines. It can easily index your website as well as understand the connection between your content. However, logical site structure also improves UX by providing the logical journey through your website.

Focus shifts to user experience

In the age of semantic search, user satisfaction should be guiding all of our SEO efforts.

Basically, Google cares about user satisfaction. They continuously understand the searcher and satisfy the customer in a better way.

Moreover, the SEO specialist should be focused on UX too.

What you can do

Improve the page speed as much as possible. Make sure that your website is mobile optimized as well as keep your eyes on matrices bounce rate and duration of the session.


It is essential for SEO that how google understands the intent of the content. Whenever you are creating content must keep the semantic search in your mind. In conjunction, don’t forget how this works on google E-A-T principles.

The content should be relevant and as well as high quality. But it is also zero on searcher intent and optimized for indexing and ranking by Google.

However, if you manage to strike the balance then definitely you are on the right way.

How to write the SEO content- A Complete guide


Iffat Shaheen


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