Google search change – The Knowledge Graph

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Google have announced a new way to search called the “Knowledge Graph”. The basic premise is that hitherto search has been all about matching specific keywords to search queries. That gives a set of results which doesn’t take into account your interests or give the Stumbleupon like ability to discover new and exciting things, or simply to find related information that might be of interest.

Google give three examples of how the Knowledge Graph could help you find what you’re looking for (or indeed what you weren’t looking for but will find interesting or useful.

1) Finding what you’re looking for: Google use the example of a search for the “Taj Mahal”. Google now understand the difference between a monument in India in front of which the iconic image of Princess Diana was taken and your local Indian restaurant by the same name. Google now understands the difference and can narrow your search results to just the “Taj Mahal” that you’re interested in removing results for others from view.

2) Key Facts Summarised: With the Knowledge Graph Google can summarise relevant content around the topic and present it as a side bar. For instance if you search for a famous person they could include biographical information and key facts about their life. Google use historical searches to discover what information people have previously searched for to determine what facts you’re likely to be interested in. They point out that it’s not simply a catalogue of information, but it’s the intelligence of understanding the inter-relationships that’s key.

3) Discovery: This is perhaps the most interesting aspect of Google’s Knowledge Graph – it can help you make unexpected discoveries. These are things you’d probably never have searched for because you never knew the information was relevant or even existed. Google’s example is a search for Matt Groening the creator of the Simpsons, Google’s Knowledge Graph reveals a surprising source for the names of the Simpson’s characters.

Google claim that they can now sometimes help answer your next question before you’ve asked it, because the facts they show are informed by what other people have searched for. How this will affect product search and selling on the Internet has yet to be seen, but it’ll most certainly affect your website ranking as it’s rolled out across the world. To date it’s being gradually rolled out to US English users and they’re also tailoring the experience for mobile users.

38 Responses

  1. ebay should ditch item specifics and all the other codswallop they use as a search and employ google

  2. Agreed. It is far easier to find relevent stuff on ebay using google than ebay’s own search.

    All the item specific details are either going to be in the catagory or in the listing anyway so why triplicate the workload for sellers.

    Even large outlets agree that item specifics should be ditched judging by previous reports on Tamebay.

    ebay claim that item specifics help international sales. Why then is there no consistency with this from one country to the next?

    If you don’t sell internationally then you don’t need it.

  3. most ebays categories are the work of someone 15 years ago ,
    thrown together in haste and hope, struggling to cope with the success of the idea

  4. Maybe ebay should ditch the user entered custom item specifics and go for user entered custom catagories instead?

    At least then catagories would be up to date brand and product wise. Why should I have to use the ebay catagory of “other” for a recently launched and popular brand or product or inovation?

    Not a problem for google search of course.

  5. how about just simply vintage postcard
    and then entering your specific in search
    eg vintage postcard english electric deltic nimbus
    richard ambrose being my point exactly what has trust and safety expertise got to do with actual selling

  6. you only need to go into any supermarket to see how is done they have signs above an isle saying
    they dont list every cake and type of loaf

  7. This clearly prooves why ebay search and item specifics are pants!

    Listings titles now have 80 characters.

    Plonk the county in the title and allow the search algorithm to do its job properly.

    Why bother having the counties in item specifics? It is extra work for sellers.

    ebay could extend titles to 120 characters which would allow every key item specific word that sellers deem are necessary to appear in the listing title. You could then get rid of item specfics as it would not be needed!

    Search would be simple and based around item title and catagory only. And buyers would actually be able to find what they want!

    In the bread example above the type of bread would be in the title. No need to create reams and reams and levels and sub levels of item specifics. (brown, white, granery, sliced, unsliced, loaf, rolls, bagette, cottage, tiger, giraffe, etc)

  8. The other thing of course is that GOOGLE searches for keywords in the title.

    Unlike ebay, GOOGLE does not use item specifics as part of its search algorithm. Maybe this is why it is easier to find stuff on ebay using GOOGLE!

    So the longer the title the more information there is for GOOGLE, Bing, Yahoo, etc.

    Do ebay ever think about this?

  9. The really annoying thing about item specifics is when searches return items that don’t have your search terms in their titles simply because quite by chance a search term is also an item specific. It would at least be nice to be able to search on “title only” and switch the IS off.

  10. My Father was into A4’s I was never that interested. Real Steam Locomotives were always painted Green with Copper Caps and lots of Brass and Cast Numerplates and named after Grand Buildings or Kings not after such as Racehorses or Ducks.


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