A gaze into the crystal ball of Google - social, local and predictive search


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Social signals and location awareness are having an ever increasing impact on search engine optimisation and making exciting things happen with predictive search. In this presentation we explore some of the changes happening in search engines, and what this means in real terms for us as consumers and business owners.

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  • Good afternoon
    My name is Ruth Cheesley
    I'm going to talk for about half an hour about the future of search engines like Google
    and how we can get an idea of future developments by looking at their recent changes they have implemented – especially in the area of listening to social signals and understanding your location.
    You can tweet me at Rcheesley or circle me on G+ at google.com/+RuthCheesley.
    So, for many people you may feel a bit like this trying to understand search engines
  • Often we feel that we're fumbling around in the dark, bumping into things, tripping over, fumbling to find familiar surroundings.
    Sometimes we think we know where we are, and another obstacle comes up in our path which we trip over.
    Wouldn't it be great to be able to see outside the blindfold, to see what might be coming ahead?
    That's what I hope to cover in this talk.
  • Much of SEO is acutally educated guesswork. Only the search engines really know what's going on, where they intend to take their business.
    We look on, read patents, watch acquisitions, interpret changes, try to keep up.
    Guess work isn't always accurate – sometimes people get it wrong.
    The concepts I'm talking about in this session are my own educated guess – not fact, not definite, but my thoughts on where we are going with SEO and how you need to keep up.
  • To gaze, if you like, into the crystal ball and see what we find there
    But really, all we need to do is to look at what is happening right now, and look at how things are being developed, to get a good idea where things might be headed.
    In this presentation I'll be covering three key areas which I believe are going to become really important in the coming years.
    These are areas which are often spoken of in isolation, but when you combine them together you can get a good idea of both their importance and relevance.
  • There's no doubting that we are facing change
    Constant, evolving, keeping ahead of what we expect
    As web developers and designers we need to keep up to date with the changes – not something to be frightened of, but not something to ignore.
    You need to keep ahead of the game so that your clients stay ahead of the game
    So we all need to have a glance in the crystal ball at some point, make some educated guesses, watch what's happening around us.
  • So, let's start with what we know now.
    Recent update Hummingbird
    Architecture, Google, Change – epic
    Better understand links between things, associations, words and contexts which occur in similar situations.
    Understand linguistic differences
    Natural language processing and interpretation
  • Great quote! Understanding synonyms opens up a lot of potential.
    We know that the focus has shifted away from keyword density and cheating the system towards good quality content written by authoritative sources on reputable websites which have a good user experience and are well optimised so that search engine spiders can find them.
    Focus has moved towards serving the most relevant content, might not be the best optimised.
    People who lost out – long tail poor quality pages.
  • Doesn't mean you can flood your site with synonyms. Doesn't mean you should ignore them either.
    Need to be aware of the power of synonyms to set you apart from others, as well as to differentiate.
  • So, we're going to cover how three concepts are changing the way that search engines will be using our data in the future with this recent change in mind.
    Social interactions and social signals
    Localisation and personalisation of search results
    How these combine to allow for Predictive Search
    They are three areas where a lot of change is happening within Google and this often can mean they will be important in the coming months and years.
  • We know that Google launched Google+ a few years back, and that it is using this social network to try to understand human relaitonships and networking to better persnoalise search results and understand the relevance, authority and reputation of web-based content.
    Universal analytics also extends this beyond into apps, devices with embedded software and more.
    Google+ is the only social network to directly affect Google position
  • Never has there been a time in history when so much was known about our habits, lifestyle and interests than that which is known by search engines nowadays.
    By gaining a deep understanding of how we interact with the world, search engines can deliver a more relevant experience to us – indeed they are now begining to predict what we need before we even think we might need it.
  • Let's start with social.
    Google+ allows you to connect and interact with people from around the world. You can organise your connections in whatever way suits you – it's your own personal filing system.
    You can connect up your Google+ profile with anywhere you write content as an author, to both gain accreditation but also develop your personal brand, authority and reputation on particular topics – because it's all linked to your verified Google+ profile.
    Google can also interpret the social signals within Google+ - for example sharing and +1'ing – to better understanding the popularity, virality and quality of content. Good stuff gets shared, poor quality stuff doesn't.
  • Looks also at how content is shared – who shares it, when, how, with who, and who do they share it with
    Ripple effect
  • Things are changing, quickly. We need to start making changes to how we do things now, so that we are there tomorrow.
    Think about semantic information – explaining stuff
    Think about how your social signals are being used, and how they can help influence your search positioning
    Think about targeted marketing – these changes are like gold dust for marketers, we can understand our market so much more closely
  • There is a new way to do SEO.
    Write good stuff
    Don't try to cheat
    Think about quality, reputation and authority
    Encourage social sharing, interaction and engagement
    Think about adding value, not writing for search engines
  • It's about adding value to the community – which we do really well.
    Telling machines about your content so that they can interpret and serve it in the most relevant way.
  • Thanks
  • A gaze into the crystal ball of Google - social, local and predictive search

    1. 1. Ruth Cheesley - @RCheesley – google.com/+RuthCheesley A gaze into the crystal ball of Google Social, Local & Predictive Search
    2. 2. @RCheesley
    3. 3. @RCheesley
    4. 4. Ruth Cheesley - @RCheesley – google.com/+RuthCheesley @RCheesley
    5. 5. Ruth Cheesley - @RCheesley – google.com/+RuthCheesley @RCheesley
    6. 6. @RCheesley
    7. 7. @RCheesley “A synonym is a word you use if you can't spell the one you intended to use!”
    8. 8. An SEO expert walks into a bar, bars, restaurant, eatery, public house, grill, food, bartender, wine, liquor .... @RCheesley
    9. 9. Social, Local and Prediction @RCheesley
    10. 10. @RCheesley
    11. 11. @RCheesley
    12. 12. @RCheesley
    13. 13. @RCheesley
    14. 14. Ruth Cheesley - @RCheesley – google.com/+RuthCheesley Any questions?