The Google Knowledge Panel: How It Works and Why It Matters.

Google Knowledge Panels are boxes of helpful information that appear next to relevant search results. While Branded/Personal Panels are usually reserved for famous people, places, or organizations, any local business can be featured in a Local Panel. Knowledge Panels offer information at a glance and save visitors time by presenting it all in one place.

What is the Google Knowledge Panel?

Google Knowledge Panels are boxes of helpful information that appear next to relevant search results. While Branded/Personal Panels are usually reserved for famous people, places, or organizations, any local business can be featured in a Local Panel. Knowledge Panels offer information at a glance and save visitors time by presenting it all in one place.

Knowledge Panels are a part of Google’s Knowledge Graph which contains billions of data points for easy access to common questions. Google wants users to stay within the Google ecosystem as much as possible. This means presenting information without the user needing to click on a link to an external website. Knowledge Panels allow for specific facts and highlights about a search query to be displayed without the user even scrolling down the page to see more search results.

 

There are two different types of panels: Local and Branded/Personal Panels

LOCAL PANELS
Local Panels show important information about local businesses when they appear in local search results. Any local business can have a local panel provided they meet the requirements. There is no guarantee that a Local Panel will be presented to a user, but according to Google “relevance, distance, and the prominence of the business” are major factors in the algorithm’s decision.

Exactly what appears in a Local Panel will differ from business to business. For example, a hotel might have a list of amenities while a restaurant will likely have a link to the menu or reservation service. That said, business hours, contact information, location, and reviews are all fairly universal. Along with this critical information, there will be links to any social media pages associated with this business.

NOTE: It is especially important for multi-location businesses to review these links and make sure they are redirecting to the right location. We will review how to edit and make suggestions to a Knowledge Panel later in the article.

BRANDED PANELS
Unlike Local Panels, Branded or Personal Panels are reserved for famous or otherwise influencing entities. They display information like a company’s CEO, date founded, and stock price. For individuals, it will often link to a Wikipedia page or an associated body of work.

How to Claim and Edit a Knowledge Panel.

Any business can have a Local Panel provided they have a verified Google Business Profile. Your Google Business Profile is also how you can claim and make suggestions to your Local Panel. Once claimed, you still won’t be able to edit the panel directly, but you will be able to make suggestions that Google will have the chance to implement. The steps are outlined in this article by google, but to summarize: 

Find your business’s Local Panel

Click the “Suggest edits” button. If you don’t see that you either haven’t claimed your Knowledge Panel or you claimed it on a different Google account

Select the information you want changed, what you want it changed to, and if applicable, any URL that proves the information you are suggesting is correct (for example, the hours of operation section on your business’s website)

Things are significantly different when it comes to Branded/Personal Panels. There is no direct way to have a Branded/Personal Panel created, but once it becomes available you can attempt to verify ownership.

Why You Should Care.

A Local Panel lets you stand out from the competition when it comes to local search. Your information will be displayed prominently and clearly apart from the sea of other search results. But because this information is the first thing users will see, it’s even more informative to stay on top of it and make sure that information is up to date. Think of a Local Panel as just another listing like Facebook or Yelp that you should be checking regularly.

Knowledge Panels allow for information to rise above the crowd of local search results and allow users to identify it at a glance. By claiming your Local Panel you can make sure that these key pieces of information like hours of operations, phone numbers, and website addresses are correct and up to date.

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