The Role of NLP In SEO – Semantic SEO Explained!


If you’ve been on pins and needles since the last few Google updates — take a deep breath and RELAX. The more you worry, the more the topic of NLP in SEO will be hard to comprehend. So let’s try to understand it easily.

NLP isn’t rocket science; it’s a technique that helps computers understand human content much better. Understanding NLPs is essential for SEO because it allows us to create “high-quality content” that search engines understand and like.

To help you, I’ll break down everything I’ve learned in the past few years (and in the last few updates). I’ll share what NLP in SEO and how to use it. After reading this blog post, you’ll understand why NLP is important for SEO today. Let’s begin with the basics!

What Is NLP & How Does It Work?

NLP stands for natural language processing. It’s a field of artificial intelligence that helps a computer or a machine understand what we write. Simply put, NLP in SEO is about search engines understanding the human content to analyze and rank content.

It’s crucial because computers can’t understand human language unless it’s broken down into data machines can process. This was first introduced during the Google Bert update in 2019 (one of the main updates after Rankbrain).

After the update, I saw a massive change in Google search results. Before this algorithm update, the articles were ranked based on exact and related keywords. But now, it’s more about contextual meaning and search intent.

Thanks to the NLPs. It allows search engines to better understand the terms and concepts of human language by breaking it down into structured data:

  • Tokenization – Breaking down input text into tokens (words, numbers, punctuation).
  • Stop Word Removal – Removing common words like “the,” “a,” etc.
  • Part-of-Speech Tagging – Labeling words as nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.
  • Entity Recognition – Identifying key entities like people, places, and organizations.
  • Dependency Parsing – Analyzing grammatical relationships between words.
  • Sentiment Analysis – Determining positive, negative, or neutral sentiment.

How Google Uses NLP In SEO?

Google uses NLP (Natural Language Processing) to understand the content of website pages.

If you’ve been into SEO and blogging for 10 years, you would have known that Google used to rank content based on how many times a keyword was used in the article.

For example, for keywords like “veterinary clinic near me,” the data shown was pages with this exact keyword phrase instead of considering the clinic and users’ location.

However, Google now shows results for local keywords based on the users’ and the clinic’s location and content.

How does Google understand the clinic location? From NLP entities. 


Google combines the location entities from the query and the content to provide localized, hyper-relevant results – showing you actual veterinary clinics physically close to where you are searching.

NLP Terms Vs LSI Keywords

NLP terms and LSI keywords are different concepts, although they relate to how search engines understand and match content to user queries.

LSI Keywords

LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords refer to words and phrases that are semantically related to or have a similar meaning to the target keyword. For example, if the target keyword is “veterinary clinic near me,” some LSI keywords could be:

  • Free veterinary clinic near me
  • Cheap veterinary clinic near me
  • 24-hour veterinary clinic near me

NLP Terms

NLP terms are called entities. Entities refer to specific elements like people, places, organizations, etc. Some common types of entities include:

  • Person (e.g., “Sam Elliott,” “Dr. John Smith”)
  • Location (e.g., “New York City”, “Animal Hospital”)
  • Organization (e.g., “Google,” “ASPCA”)
  • Creative Work (e.g., “The Big Lebowski,” movies, books)
  • Event (e.g., conferences, holidays)

For a keyword like “Fettuccine Alfredo recipe Italian,” the NLPs would be:

  • Dish/Food (Fettuccine Alfredo)
  • Cuisine (Italian)
  • Ingredients (fettuccine pasta, parmesan cheese, butter, cream)
  • Cooking Method (tossing hot pasta with Parmesan and butter/cream sauce)
  • Origin (Rome, Italy)

If you include the right entities, such as the dish name, ingredients, etc., in the content with the best information, your chances of ranking are high.

Methods To Find NLP Terms For Your Content

Both free and paid tools exist to find NLP terms (entities) for your content. The free ones require time and some extra research, while the paid ones will provide a list of NLP terms in a few seconds.

Using Tools Like SurferSEO & Neuronwriter

You can use tools like SurferSEO and Neuronwriter to get a list of NLPs. The only requirement is the main keyword. Once you enter the main keyword in the tool, it will analyze the top competitors on search engines and extract the best entities.

Like Neuronwriter did for the main keyword, “Fettuccine Alfredo recipe Italian.”


Using An AI Tool Like ChatGPT

This is a free method with AI tools like ChatGPT, but it takes time. After fixing the primary keyword, you may utilize this resource through an ideal prompt like “Give me a list of NLP terms for my keyword.” You will get the result like this!

How To Use NLP Terms For Content SEO?

Using NLP terms for content SEO isn’t difficult, especially with tools like SurferSEO or Neuronwriter. These tools provide the list of entities you need to add to the blog posts; the more entities you need, the better the content score, but this is a paid solution.

If you’re looking for a free solution, you must spend some extra time.

Identify The Key Entities

First, you have to identify key entities. You can get help from ChatGPT or any other AI tool. For example, the entities for the keyword Fettuccine Alfredo recipe Italian will be:

  • Dish/Food (Fettuccine Alfredo)
  • Cuisine (Italian)
  • Ingredients (fettuccine pasta, Parmesan cheese, butter, cream)
  • Cooking Method (tossing hot pasta with Parmesan and butter/cream sauce)
  • Origin (Rome, Italy)

Add Proper Headings & Context

After finding the entities, add proper headings. For instance, you can’t use ingredients like butter and parmesan cheese anywhere in the blog. Add headings to provide proper context, such as the ingredients for the recipe, the cooking method, etc.

Explain the origins and history of Fettuccine Alfredo in Roman cuisine and describe the texture and flavor profile (rich, creamy, cheesy, etc.). You can also provide tips on achieving the perfect sauce consistency.

This allows Google’s NLP to truly understand your content, which covers an authentic Fettuccine Alfredo recipe, comprehending the entire context rather than just keywords. As you are not adding just the matching keywords, the search engines can understand your content better.

Can NLP Boost Your Website Performance?

Yes, NLP boosts website performance by helping create relevant content for search engines. Entities help search engines understand the depth of your content. It can even analyze the sentiment behind your content.

It’s not just about whether you’ve used the LSI keywords like “ingredients for Fettuccine Alfredo recipe Italian.” It’s more about whether your content includes specific entities related to the topic, such as cream, Parmesan cheese, and other relevant components.

By including these entities, your content signals to search engines that it thoroughly covers the topic. This enhances the relevance and quality of your content in the eyes of search engines, leading to better rankings.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the use of NLP in SEO?

NLP in SEO helps search engines understand the context and nuances of human language, leading to more accurate and relevant search results. It enhances content relevance by recognizing entities and their relationships, improving ranking.

What are NLP keywords?

NLP keywords refer to entities such as people, places, organizations, and other specific elements. Search engines use these entities to comprehend and rank content based on context and meaning rather than just exact keyword matches.

How should SEO optimize web pages for NLP?

To optimize web pages for NLP, identify key entities related to your content and incorporate them naturally within your text. Use proper headings and context to ensure search engines clearly understand these entities.

Final Thoughts on NLP Optimization In SEO

So, what is NLP in SEO? Natural Language Processing helps search engines understand what your content is really about. Instead of just looking for exact keywords, search engines now try to understand the context and meaning behind your words.

To optimize for NLP, you must identify and use key entities (like specific names, places, or things) related to your topic. Ensure your content is well-organized with clear headings and covers the topic thoroughly. I recommend using a paid tool rather than a free one!

by Nirmala
Nirmala Santhakumar is a professional blogger, WordPress enthusiast who has been blogging since 2010. She always loves to write useful WP tips, tricks and tutorials on this active blog. Sharing her SEO knowledge is her keen interest.

1 thought on “The Role of NLP In SEO – Semantic SEO Explained!”

Leave a Comment