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Using semantic markup with WordPress to improve your search results

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Search engines are always changing the way they do things. In just a few years, we've gone from a strict keyword-based search algorithm to a semantic search algorithm that prioritizes context over match over exact keywords.

The months of keyword stuffing are a long way behind us now and if you want to make sure your site ranks as high as possible and gets as many clicks as possible, you need to think about the semantics.

Again, it is about the context. And if you want your WordPress site to use everything that is nice about Google, you need to make a few changes to the way your site looks on the search engine. You also need to think a little differently about your approach to content creation.

We're going to dive into all of these fantastic details in a moment, but I think it's important to go through some background information.

What is semantic search?

Semantic search refers to a process performed by search engines that uses multiple resources to produce search results. It basically collects information from different databases to compile the most relevant information relevant on the list of results he can at any given time.

But we are not talking about technical precision, which means that semantic search, according to Techopedia :

Semantic search is a data search technique in which a search query aims to find not only keywords but also the intent and contextual meaning of the words that a person uses for the search.

By considering a multitude of sources when delivering search results, semantic search goes beyond traditional keyword searches and even delves deeper than a dictionary definition of searched words. According to , it accomplishes this by trying to understand the intent of the query in a specific context. Search engines now do this by learning what people have searched for previously to link individual searches.

Par exemple, si vous avez cherché “les résultats des élections primaires” hier en France, et une nouvelle recherche vous recherchez le mot “primaire” aujourd’hui, Google va probablement livrer les résultats des élections dans le second cas, aussi bien parce that he knows what you expect.

No, semantic research is not the dawn of lifting machines. It's artificial intelligence, more is distinct from AI in the way the algorithm learns and adapts the results provided to individual users based on said previous research of the individual user.

Need more examples?

We see a form of semantic search served all the time while using Google when you misspelled a search query:


We had this function a long time before the semantic search deployed with the Google Hummingbird update in 2013. After this update, we started to see much more intuitive search features like the ability to ask Google a question in the conversational language:

But how does it work?

Since the Hummingbird update, Google is now paying attention to the meaning of entire sentences rather than the meaning of each word. It is about context here. And semantic search will not exist without the ability of these algorithms to deduce the meaning of requests. Thus, the SERPS result are not based on exact keyword matching but on sentence semantics.

Why do you need semantic search optimization?

Since the launch of Google Hummingbird a few years ago, there has been a resumption of focus on semantic optimization. Of course, not everyone jumped on board right away.

Basically, there's no better time to jump on the running semantic research bandwagon. First of all, the journey will be long. And secondly, putting a little extra effort on optimization will only do your website good.

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Avant commencer à discuter de l’aspect “how-to” de la recherche sémantique, laissez-moi vous parler des avantages de la recherche sémantique.

Optimization for semantic search:

1. Improves the rand on the search engine

While the former Google engineer Matt Cutts has said in the past that adding semantic data to your site (which we'll get to shortly) doesn't improve your search engine rank, it does assure you that your content will be visible to a wider audience, and it assures people who are really looking for your content can find it.

2. Improve the click rate

The beauty of semantic search optimization is that it ensures that you links to your website in search results in the most visually appealing way possible. A traditional search result looks like this:


An optimized result looks like this:


3. Improves accessibility of content

The wonderful benefit of semantic search optimization is that your site automatically becomes a bit more accessible. The titles of articles and pages on your site will be clear and concise, as will their descriptions. This means that disabled users will be able to access your site a little easier on screen readers. Note: This doesn't mean your accessibility efforts should end. You can always take steps to improve accessibility on your blog

4. It considers the intention of the users

As we said before, optimizing semantic search means thinking about what your users are looking for. And while you might have the clearest semantic data in town, a lack of contextually relevant content could be a handicap. On the flip side, thinking about semantic research and user intentions during the content creation process means you'll make posts more useful and relevant to your readers.

How to optimize semantic search in WordPress

Now that we've gone through a few details about what semantic search means, how it works, and why you should care, we can start to focus on ways you can optimize your WordPress site accordingly. Here are some key steps.

Step 1: Think about the end user.

In truth, the major part of semantic search optimization is that of user intent. We covered this in the perks section above. But from a practical standpoint, it's important to take a moment to think about what your target audience is looking for. Think about what your ideal visitor or customer wants when they land on your site.

Then take it one more step and consider what they would be looking for to see your site in the search results. It will definitely get you to do a bit of mental gymnastics on how to go about things, but the end result will be a website that speaks more directly to your visitors, as it was created with active recognition of what people want. and wait. The idea behind semantic search is to determine the intent of users and deliver search results and content that meets their expectations.

Step 2: Create accurate and clear content.

According to Neil Patel in an article about CrazyEggSemantic search optimization means making every bit of content you write doubly sure.

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“Les moteurs de recherche sont adaptés pour identifier la signification de votre contenu,” dit Patel. Donc, cela signifie chaque article que vous créez doit avoir un objectif ponctuel, rester sur le message, et offrir des plats à emporter clairs pour les visiteurs.

Step 3: SEO basics under control

All this talk about search results and semantic contextuals might make you think keywords are no longer of any use, which is just not true. The use of keywords to display results is drastically reduced. Still, optimizing your content for keyword phrases can be helpful in narrowing the scope of your content so that it is more useful to your readers.

And you want to be sure to maximize the effect of each page or post by filling in all the relevant SEO information when you can. There are plenty of plugins that can help you get this task off your to-do list with ease, but we tend to like All-In-One SEO Pack.

Step 4: Prioritize the long tail.

Another thing that falls in direct line with mastering SEO basics is understanding and implementing a long tail of used keywords. Ok so I know I just said keywords don't matter as much as they used to, but the long tail of keywords can be extremely helpful. Why? Well, because they come from searches that people do that are related to your primary keywords. By their very nature, they are contextual. Long tail keyword optimization is actually one of the first ways SEOs got involved in all of this semantic research.

And as a site owner, you can use the long tail of keywords for allow search engines to understand exactly what you are saying. Long keyword phrases provide context for your content and show search engines the relationships between different ideas in the content.

Donc, si vous avez un site qui parle des styles de danse, il serait utile d’avoir les noms des différentes danses incluses dans tout votre contenu. En incluant les mots “Le Robot” dans votre contenu, Google saura contextuellement que vous parlez de la danse avec ce nom, pas des robots réels. La meilleure partie sur l’optimisation de la longue queue de mots-clés est que vous ne verrez pas de difficulté dedans. Souvent, les phrases que les gens peuvent rechercher naturellement en regardant le sujet de votre article suffit.

Step 5: Use the markup scheme.

Markup scheme is also known as structured data markup and it basically gives search engines more information so they can show your site in the most semantically derived search results possible.

You need to add semantic data to your website if you want to get the benefits over semantic search. It might seem intimidating at first, but don't worry: you won't have to redo it on your entire site. In fact, there are plenty of plugins available that will help you speed up the process in just a few steps. We'll talk more about this in the next section.


In the meantime, however, it's important to focus on one plugin, especially one that can help you through the necessary steps in adding markup scheme to your site. He is called Schema Creator by Raven.

This plugin is easy to use and adds a form on your site that automatically inserts microdata in your articles or pages. You can embed the data you create using a shortcode, in addition you can edit the data after insertion, customize styles, and it adds a schema icon on the visual editor for convenience. All you have to do is choose what type of diagram you want to create: person, product, event, organization, movie, book, or magazine. Then enter the appropriate information and that's it.

Some useful plugins

If trying to optimize your site for semantic search seems too intimidating, there is a good selection of plugins out there that can help you in the effort.

All-in-One SEO Pack



I already mentioned this plugin above, but it deserves its own little description here. All-in-One SEO Pack is a fairly comprehensive plugin for optimization, which makes it easy to use to accomplish all SEO related tasks. It includes support for XML sitemaps and Google Analytics and it helps you create advanced canonical URLs, optimize custom post types, automatically generate meta tags, defined custom titles and meta descriptions, and more.

Il est également compatible avec de nombreux autres plugins, permet d’éliminer le contenu en double, comprend sécurité “Nonce”, et a été traduit en 57 langues. All-in-One SEO Pack est gratuit mais une Pro Version exists and includes a feature manager, XML video sitemap compatibility, category control, tagging, SEO custom taxonomy, WooCommerce compatibility, and more for $ 79 per year.

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Semantic tags



The Semantic Tags plugin focuses exclusively on the semantic side of things by making it easier for you to optimize on how Google understands the relationships between your content. Once installed, this plugin allows you to edit the labels on your posts and pages by adding tags for them. This allows you to create semantic tags that have a deeper meaning than a traditional tag you place on an article or page.

You can even link to other resources inside these tags to provide more context for your content. This plugin is free.

In short

Semantic search may seem like the most intimidating thing to implement at first, but hopefully after reading this article you will have a better understanding of what it means, how it works, and how you can best optimize. your WordPress site accordingly. At the end of the day, your efforts will pay off in the form of a website that is easier for your target audience to find. And that's certainly a good thing, right?

This article features 3 comments

  1. Hello,
    And what do you think of Yoast SEO? (That seems to be better rated than All in One SEO Pack.)

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