Yesterday, I attended sessions entitled "What's Different About B2B?", "SEM Toolkit", and "Web 2.0 and Search Engines". Here are some final thoughts from the Search Engine Strategies Conference & Expo Toronto 2008.
Measure Everything, But Don't Forget to Act - Bryan Eisenberg referred to the abundance of data we record as data diarrhea in his keynote presentation. It sure can seem that way. We're measuring everything, as we should, and we're trying to analyze all this data, but if there's not action to improve matters, it's all one huge waste of time. We should measure, analyze, report and act, in that order. Acting upon analysis is the entire raison d'être, and we shouldn't forget it.
Blog! - Starting a blog will do wonders for your search engine rankings. The long tail is fed by your entries, and whether you're selling books, software, widgets or simply passionate about a hobby, if you don't have one you're missing the boat. Blog!
Web 2.0 Means Something - Many will argue it's a bullshit term. In a sense, these people are exactly right. Just try and define Web 2.0 without stumbling, it means different things to different people. It might be a bullshit buzzword, but it means something. The web is now collaborative. There's interaction, and real change will come from online discussions. If Prima sells you a crap television and provides abhorrent customer service, you have a voice.
SEO 2.0? - One of my favourite speakers yesterday was Ambles from Yahoo!. Ambles spoke about Yahoo!'s Search Monkey, their new opt-in search strategy that allows web authors to give their content context. That's the essence of the semantic web, and Ambles believes it's the future of search. In a nutshell, this involves those who write for the web, like me, adding microformats to my content, which actually gives my words meanings when they're indexed by search bots and non-human devices. This may be the future, but it's not here now. So long as it's an opt-in function of Yahoo! search I doubt many web authors will bother implementing this new code.
They gave us all a hardcover copy of Seth Godin's Meatball Sundae: Is Your Marketing out of Sync? and the Search Monkey guys were handing out bananas. Nothing beats a meatball sundae with bananas.