Tips from Search Engine Strategies NYC

A few tips about Universal Search, optimizing video, link popularity and web analytics from the SES NY show

We’re in NY this week at the Search Engine Strategies conference. After sitting through a few sessions, it has become clear to us that they aren’t talking to publishers. They are talking mostly to marketers, retailers and lead generators. Most attendees, and most sessions, are geared toward paid search, while we at Mequoda, as you know, strongly value organic search.

The heavy focus on paid search at this conference is pretty reflective of the spending trend, which SEMPO just released for 2007. A summary:

  • The North American SEM industry grew from $9.4 billion in 2006 to $12.2 billion in 2007, exceeding earlier projections of $11.5 billion for 2007.
  • Paid placement captures 87.4% of 2007 spending; organic SEO 10.5%, paid inclusion, .07% and technology investment, 1.4%.
  • North American SEM spending is now projected to grow to $25.2 billion in 2011, up significantly from the $18.6 billion forecast a year ago.
  • Marketers are finding more search dollars by poaching budget from print magazine spending, website development, direct mail and other marketing programs.

It’s important, for us as publishers, to recognize that a true online publisher shouldn’t need to buy traffic. As online content providers, we need only to focus on ranking high organically, because we know Google prefers to send traffic to online publishers. Job number one is doing keyword research. Until you know what your market is searching for online, and you build your site and write your online content accordingly, you will be forever invisible in Google.

We pulled together a few tips from the conference that we thought might be useful. We covered Universal Search, we learned a little about optimizing online video, we went back to the basics on link popularity and we heard our new favorite speaker, Avinash Kaushik, talk about Web analytics.

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