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Enhancing Search Engine Optimization with Web Content Mining

August 04, 2014 by Mainak Biswas under Digital Marketing Marketing305 views
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As businesses constantly strive to make their web content more accessible, they increasingly find themselves seeking the help of SEO professionals. However, the SEO arena has changed in recent years and what used to be the norm a few years ago has no place at work today.

One of the newest trends in the realm of SEO is web mining. This rapidly growing research area consists of web usage mining, web structure mining and web content mining. Web usage mining refers to the analysis of user access patterns on usage logs. The structure of hyperlinks, which is crucial to SEO is studied under web structure mining. Finally, web content mining helps SEO professionals to analyze information and trends using web page content.

What is web content mining and why do we need to understand it?

Though web content mining is related to data and text mining, it is fundamentally different from the two. Web data is either semi-structured or not structured at all. Data mining analyses structured data, whereas, text mining analyses unstructured data. Web content mining, on the other hand, analyses the semi-structured quality of the web. By using creative applications to mine semi-structured data on the web, SEO professionals can easily understand where they need to focus, which keywords they must target and why certain pages are not receiving enough traffic, in spite of having great content.

What are the different kinds of web content mining?

Web content mining can be differentiated under two broad categories: Database View and Information Retrieval View. Database View helps analysts to arrive at better information management. It also helps them with querying on the web by trying to analyze the structure of the website and transforming it entirely into a database itself.

On the other hand, Information Retrieval View analyses both unstructured and semi-structured data. Studies reveal that most searches consist of a bag of words or a key phrase. These key phrases help people at arriving on pages that are distinctly textual in nature. For semi-structured data, HTML structures inside the documents are used.

Some of the most important techniques in web content mining are:

  • Data/information extraction:
    The first step towards understanding SEO is to understand the nature of the web itself. As web is made of information, web content mining involves understanding this huge database of information. Firstly, one needs to understand structured data, which includes products and search results. Machine learning and automatic extraction techniques are used to tackle information extraction.
  • Schema matching and information matching:
    The next technique is to understand how data is represented. Though Internet has a lot of information, it is displayed differently on each of the websites. Consistency of content is not possible as different people write different things on the same topic. In this technique, semantic matching of similar data is done in order to categorize websites that offer similar content.
  • Opinion extraction:
    Thanks to social media, extracting opinions and beliefs has never been so easy. This process also includes analyzing content from blogs, editorials and other content that offer varied opinions.
  • Knowledge synthesis:
    This process includes generating concept hierarchies so that we can get a coherent picture about what is important and what is less important. If manually done, it takes a very long time and it might not even be possible to engage in ontology with all the information that is available on the internet.
  • Restructuring SEO strategies:
    Last but not the least, web content mining needs to lead to responsible restructuring of SEO strategies. It includes re-structuring of key phrases and keywords that needs to be targeted.

It is important for SEO professionals to know that web content mining can yield very important information. It tells them what topics need to be given attention to and how clients can build their web copy to make sure that they are reaching the right target audience. Modern software makes it much easier to engage in web content mining than it used to be, a few years ago. If SEO consultants spend a little time trying to understand the various web content mining software programs available today, it will not only help them to gain knowledge but will also help in growing their businesses.

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