Trusting intranet sites to improve search results

Trusting intranet sites to improve search results
Photo by Eric Ziegler
Authority of a site or page is crucial for determining how a page or a site will show up in search results. That is the case for the internet and that is the case for enterprise intranets.  So, how do you measure the authority of a page or site in an intranet? Can the interactions of employees on sites help determine the authority of a site? How much does trust play in the role of authority? If the employees trust the page, should that have an impact on the authority rank of the site? Can you measure how much employees trust a site?
My opinion? Yep.  
And in many cases there are ways to systematically determine the authority of the site because of the actions of the employees on the site. One way of determining if a site is trust worthy is to measure the frequency of employees viewing a site. As enterprises embrace social though, there is the huge potential on how improving intranet search results.

David Amerland's book, Google Semantic Search, talks specifically about the internet and the influence of social on search results. Specifically, he states that based on individual interactions (social included) the search results are influenced. The ideas discussed in David's book easily translate to an enterprise intranet that has an Enterprise Social Network (ESN). David's list of influencers include:
  • Commenting in a blog post on the website
  • Responding to comments on a blog post on the website
  • Commenting about a website in social network
  • Responding to comments about a website in social networks 
  • Resharing the content of websites and adding a comment to the reshare
  • Resharing the content of websites without adding any comment
  • Following websites that have a presence on a social network
  • “Liking” or “+ 1-ing” the content of websites
  • Interacting with the social network posts of websites
Why is this list so important? Because the list provides a way for people to show that they trust the content. And if they show they trust the content, than the there is a higher chance that the page or site should have an increased authority.  And if the content has a higher authority rank, then it should show up higher on the search results.  Without this type of interaction, enterprise search will continue to fall short.  

This note was inspired by +David Amerland 's book, Google Semantic Search - Amazon location 1560.