In a webinar, a search developer advocate for Google, Martin Splitt, explained how different parts of a webpage gets analysed and weighted.

martin spiltt from google

Source – Search Engine Journal 2021

In the webinar, he explained a concept called Centerpiece Annotation. He also discusses how Google separates boilerplate content (same/similar content found across many other pages across the website), then analyses the rest of the copy to determine what the page is about.

 

Martin explains Centerpiece Annotation:

That’s just us analysing the content and, I don’t know what we have publicly said about this, but I think I brought it up in one of the podcasts episodes.

So I can probably say that we have a thing called the Centerpiece Annotation, for instance, and there’s a few other annotations that we have where we look at the semantic content, as well as potentially the layout tree.

But fundamentally we can read that from the content structure in HTML already and figure out so “Oh! This looks like from all the natural language processing that we did on this entire text content here that we got, it looks like this is primarily about topic A, dog food.

 

He goes on to say that, separate from the Centerpiece, the rest of the copy then gets analysed and weighted differently based on how important a page element is. So boilerplate content like menus, standard footer text used across multiple pages, etc., as well as links to related products or blog posts, gets weighted lightly and won’t typically impact rankings.

What if the webpage contains content that’s not related to the main topic of the page? According to Martin, off-topic content doesn’t get much consideration (presumably for ranking purposes).

So if, for example, you have a page that’s mainly about peanut butter and makes mention of jelly, the webpage will probably not rank for any jelly related terms. 

Here’s Martin in action:

 

In Conclusion:

The Centerpiece Annotation seems to be a summary of the page’s main topic and gets weighted heavily for ranking purposes. Other sections of the webpage then get weighted differently, some heavier than others, based on structure. Any off-topic content won’t earn the page any ranking benefit.

 

Why Should You Care?:

The structure of your page is key for ranking purposes, and the amount of content related to the main topic should outweigh the amount of content in other sections of the webpage. 

From what Martin has said, it’s clear that every targeted keyword group should have its own dedicated (well-structured) landing page, and that multiple keyword groups should not be targeted on a single page.

While we know that content is king, Google explains to us exactly how that content gets weighed.

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