I was on a speaking gig the other night and the title of the talk was ‘Search is Dead, Long Live Search‘. So I was up with:
Ciar?n Norris – Head of Social Marketing & Director, Invention at MindShare (social media)
Teddie Cowell ? SEO Director, Guava (SEO agency)
William Tunstall-Pedoe ? CEO & Founder, True Knowledge
Alan Patrick – Consultant,Broadsight
CHAIR: Jon Myers – Head of Search / Associate Director, MediaVest
I've got something important to say!
My big theme was around how Caffeine ( yes that one again ) is going to change the landscape where spamming is going to get tougher and tougher. Along with that will come the split out between:
- Boring commercial brand owned stuff that users don’t particularly want to look (you pay for prominence via PPC)
- Interesting stuff written by individuals about those boring brands, where they help makes sense of what is the best consumer wise. (you have to have something interesting to say & be on the consumer side as a brand)
For anyone not familiar with the BIG idea, it comes from a site called cluetrain.com where they say ‘markets are conversations’. Think of amazon and its reviews, then think ‘web wide’ where forums and ‘real conversations’ happen and imagine Google filtering the results so you get those ‘conversations’.
An interesting screen grab:
Its that red box!
So from trying a few searches, the multi links are still generally at the bottom of the page, but assuming users like this stuff, you will see that block rising and you will see stuff like this crowd out the ranking where the ‘brand sites’ used to live.
Here is my message from the Chinwag night. “If you are a boring brand, or not that clever with ‘social engineering’ I.e. creating a footprint so Google thinks your site is important to their users – then you will pay dearly through PPC. ”
And lest you forget, Google is a public company and so is only interested in sustainable maximisation of profits.
By the way, I do think there is a BIG future for SEO with Google, but it will take a very different route than the hack/spam route we hear so much about. And honestly I’m only beginning to really figure it out. [Read more →]
I was at a gathering of Twitter’ites orbiting around Jeff Pulver a substantial investor in Twitter and had the pleasure of briefly meeting Sarah Blow the person responsible for community on Tweetmeme.com.
TweetMeme is a service which aggregates all the popular links on Twitter to determine which links are popular. TweetMeme categorises these links into Categories, Subcategories and Channels, making it easy to filter out the noise to find what you’re interested in.
I’m glad I did meet her, since I’m now a fan of this amazing new site. I guess its a bit like Techmeme in that its not about users directly voting for stuff, but to me it’s a bit like Digg (but far better) because its about twitterers just doing whatever they do and tweetmeme picking up their output and organising it, i.e. the vote is a by product of normal activity, leading to a far better gauge of sentiment.
The problem is that sites like Digg and Reddit are user submitted content which are voted upon, with some algo filtering and some human filtering. Its the human stuff that causes problems since you get into the area of qualitative judgement on what is good. So you often end up with news sources on Digg being banned for some random reason and so there ends up a covert form of censorship. In other words popular is not necessarily represented on Digg or Reddit.
So I will be using this site along with Reddit for my ‘meme’ fix and I think you should too.
I’ve been catching up on my rss feeds this weekend and I’ve come across a few articles worth reading:
Price Comparison RIP
Andy Beal tells us that Google is getting into the finance business by offering mortgage quotes….
It appears that LendingTree, a leading online mortgage quote provider, has taken umbrage with the company, Mortech, that provides some of the power behind LendingTree?s service. As a result, Google gets to play as well.
?LendingTree recently learned that Google imminently plans to launch a loan aggregation service in late August or early September of this year that would compete with LendingTree,? the complaint says. ?Lending Tree has also learned that Mortech intends to make its pricing engine services available for use with Google?s new service and will send information related to mortgage loan offers to be displayed to consumer on Google?s Web site.?
This is MASSIVE news…for some time I have been saying its only a matter of time before Google point their technology at other profitable areas where search technology can be used to great effect…Price comparison. This? is made for Google and they obviously feel finance is a good place to begin.
So if you have a business that aggregates information where you have a slice of commission for a sale generated, then watch out.
Google release data to tell us that ad positions don’t affect conversion. So its a case of prominence giving more volume and your landing pages giving the extra performance. My take away: take more care over your landing pages.
The following ranking factors were rated by our panel of 72 SEO experts. Their feedback is aggregated and averaged into the percentage scores below. For each, we?ve calculated the degree to which the experts felt this factor was important for achieving high rankings as well as the degree of variance in opinion, estimated using the standard deviation of the contributors? answers. Thus, factors that are high in importance and low in contention are those where experts agree the most that the factor is critical to rankings.
I thought this comscore data might interest you…Its the global and international share of search. Global = everything. International = Everything except the US. And yes the big G is the gorilla.
I’ve been talking to one of the guys from a site called panabee.com. It’s essentially a comparison site where you can compare search results from a bunch of different sites side by side i.e. google V Bing
or ebay V amazon.
Clarence was talking to me about its SEO uses and having given this the weekend to think about it amongst doing the usual weekend stuff, I think I have an opinion…
It’s fine as a general quick look at the results, but for hard core SEO, typically you would want to use a rank checker. And when using that kind of tool, you would probably track Google / .Com / Co.uk / Bing / Yahoo.
By using this kind of tool, you get historical data an in tabular form, so you can get it onto a spread sheet.
So in conclusion, fun tool that I intend to carry on using as an on the fly comparison tool. My only big question is how they plan to make money out of this!?