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Connecting The Worlds of Information Retrieval & SEO - Search solutions 2019 dawn anderson

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The worlds of information retrieval and SEO are very connected and each benefits from the other as the amount of content and unstructured data on the web grows. Here I look at my experiences over the past few years of following both the IR and SEO worlds

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Connecting The Worlds of Information Retrieval & SEO - Search solutions 2019 dawn anderson

  1. 1. Connecting)The)Worlds)of)IR)&)SEO Dawn)Anderson)< Bertey
  2. 2. My#First#IR#Conference
  3. 3. A"Banquet"in" Winchester" Cathedral
  4. 4. SEOs%do%not% attend%our% conferences
  5. 5. Anyone&would& think&SEO&had& a&bad& reputation
  6. 6. Anyone&would& think&SEO&had& a&bad& reputation
  7. 7. Anyone& would&think& SEO&had&a& bad& reputation
  8. 8. Anyone& would&think& SEO&had&a& bad& reputation
  9. 9. Sandcastle* stomping* SEOs
  10. 10. Don’t&even&get&me&started&on&the&hats&thing
  11. 11. SEO$is$beginning$ to$‘grow$up’
  12. 12. The$Web$Conference$in$San$Francisco$2019
  13. 13. About&Me
  14. 14. Also…Meet)Bert)and)Tedward
  15. 15. Infinite'loops' &'dirty' architectures
  16. 16. The$World$ of$Crawling
  17. 17. Crawl& ‘budget’& noseyness
  18. 18. URL$ Importance$ Optimisation
  19. 19. A"knowledge"‘turning"point’
  20. 20. I"came"to"grow"my" knowledge"of"how" search"REALLY"works
  21. 21. Both%SEOs%&% IR%want%to% know%this% stuff
  22. 22. Both%fields%are%very% interested%in%search%(user% behavior%&%ranking)…% obvs
  23. 23. But$rarely$cross$paths$ (conference$&$community$ wise)
  24. 24. …"Which"is" unfortunate
  25. 25. Because'both'IR'and' SEO'have'GREAT' communities
  26. 26. Good$Times
  27. 27. ESSIR%2017
  28. 28. Learnings…* Huge* amounts* including • Duplicate*&*near*duplicate*content • Web*crawling • Query*intent*detection • Query*intent*shift • Conversational*search • Natural*language*processing*&*computational* linguistics • Recommender*systems • Contextual*search • Result diversification • Human*in*the*loop • Loads*more • Similarity*&*relatedness*(coDoccurrence)
  29. 29. Some%of%the% learnings% from%ESSIR% 2017
  30. 30. The$Zipf$Mystery$Blew$My$Mind
  31. 31. At#ECIR#2018# Still#More# Learnings# Important#for# SEOs
  32. 32. I"turned"into" a"superfan at" SIGIR"2019
  33. 33. SIGIR%2019%Banquet
  34. 34. Watching)IR) developments) helps)with)SEO) myth)debunking
  35. 35. Watching)IR) developments) helps)with)SEO) myth)debunking
  36. 36. A"few"of"my"thoughts" to"date
  37. 37. Both%IR%&%SEO%fields% appear%to%be%becoming% increasingly% fragmented%with% specialisms
  38. 38. Some%SEO%Specialisms Local%SEO Technical% SEO International% SEO Javascript SEO Schema% Specialist Content% Marketer Outreach% Specialist Digital%PR
  39. 39. I"am"sure" there"are" loads"more" IR" specialisms" too Mobile"IR Contextual"Search Natural"Language"Processing Conversational"Search Similarity"Search Recommender"Systems Library"Science Temporal"Search
  40. 40. Collboration* is*king*in*both* fields
  41. 41. Learning(about(IR( concepts(makes(me( infinitely(better(as(an( SEO
  42. 42. All#of#these# topics# matter#to# my#work • Duplicate#&#near#duplicate#content • Web#crawling • Query#intent#detection • Query#intent#shift • Conversational#search • Natural#language#processing#&#computational# linguistics • Recommender#systems • Contextual#search
  43. 43. I"have"yet"to"find" an"ecommerce" platform"which"is" perfect"for"SEO
  44. 44. The$‘natural’$ challenges$of$near2 duplicate$content
  45. 45. Canonicalisation* problems*with* many*facets
  46. 46. International* SEO* challenges
  47. 47. Potential)for)ambiguity)&) disambiguation)necessity
  48. 48. Even%though%I%find%the% field%of%IR%utterly% fascinating
  49. 49. I’ll$never$be$an$ engineer
  50. 50. I’m$not$a$ computer$ scientist
  51. 51. And$part$of$what$ makes$SEO$so$ interesting$is…
  52. 52. SEO$Connects$To$Many$Fields SEO Web' Dev PR Marketing Data' Science UX IA Content
  53. 53. And$I$am$interested$in$them$ALL
  54. 54. Brands'need'ALL'of'the' connecting'fields'…' Rarely'does'“if'we'build' it,'they'will'come”'apply
  55. 55. It#seems#Web#search# IR#still#has#many# unsolved#challenges
  56. 56. Adequate( precision( seems(elusive
  57. 57. Words&are$polysemous…$ synonymous…$homonyms$ and$homophones
  58. 58. Huge%growth%in%unstructured%data
  59. 59. Web$search$seems$ increasingly$complicated
  60. 60. Search'engines' appear'to'be'still' struggling'to'fill'in' lots'of'gaps'between' structured'data
  61. 61. Which%does%not%bode%well%for%conversational% search%into%the%future
  62. 62. Perhaps(IR(is( getting( harder,(not( easier(too?
  63. 63. Reproducibility. issues
  64. 64. Certainly*SEO*is*getting* harder…*not*easier
  65. 65. The$1996$table$of$ranking$factors
  66. 66. 2019%>%200% ranking%factors
  67. 67. Each%Section%Has%Many%Factors%Now
  68. 68. And,%of%course…% we%also%have%ML% in%the%mix%too
  69. 69. BLACK&BOX& ALGORITHMS
  70. 70. SEOs%may%need%to%wear% many%hats%nowadays • Image&Attribution/ShareAlike&2.0&Generic (CC& BY/SA&2.0)&/ https://www.flickr.com/photos/marcopako/27874 63889
  71. 71. SEO$is$ definitely$not$ dead
  72. 72. Both%IR%&%SEO%Help%with% Natural%Language% Disambiguation
  73. 73. Since&SEO’s&Assist& with& Inconsistencies&&& disambiguation
  74. 74. SEOs%continually%make% recommendations%to% clients%to%improve% search%engine% understanding
  75. 75. Growth'of'Structured' Data'Implementation' since'Google' adoption
  76. 76. Ruining&SEO& can&hit&the& bottom&line
  77. 77. “To$stay$competitive,$the$retailer$launched$ 200$versions$of$its$website$depending$on$ which$country$the$customer$is$in,$which$ had$a$negative$effect$on$Asos'$search$ engine$rankings.”$(BBC,$2019)
  78. 78. I"haven’t"seen"a"lot"in" web"search"IR"about" the"challenges" presented"by" modern"JS"website" frameworks
  79. 79. Search' engine' friendly' pages need'to'be: Discoverable Understandable Contain'quality'content' that'provide'value
  80. 80. Modern'web'frameworks'complicate'relevance'' matching'further
  81. 81. Javascript*SEO*is*now*a*field*in*its*own*right
  82. 82. Or#the#newer# challenges#two# stage#indexing# holds#for#brands
  83. 83. There%are%still%a%huge% amount%of%areas% where%search%engines% need%help%to%find%the% right%&%understand% quality%content
  84. 84. “…only'46.71%'of' mobile'pages' used alt attributes'on'all' of'their'images”'(web' almanac,'2019)
  85. 85. Despite'the'importance'of'on'page'headings'for'structure'and'context' over'10%'were'not'using'them'(web'almanac'2019)
  86. 86. Performance*is*a* ranking*factor
  87. 87. Yet…%“48%%of%sites%were%labelled% as%slow”%(using%CRUX)%(Web% Almanac,%2019)
  88. 88. “Just&under&half&of& websites&still&haven't& migrated&to&HTTPS&and&are& serving&non;secure&pages& to&their&users.”&(Web& Almanac,&2019)
  89. 89. I"suspect"like"IR" research…"SEOs"have"to" be"patient"for"findings" to"be"implemented"in" practice
  90. 90. Sometimes(we(wait(a(long(time(too
  91. 91. BERT%moved%from%research%into%production
  92. 92. BOTH%IR%AND%SEO% WORLDS%ARE% EXCITED%BY%BERT
  93. 93. BOTH%IR%&%SEO% FIELDS%ARE% EXCITED%BY% MACHINE% LEARNING
  94. 94. Both%IR%and%good%SEOs% see%user%happiness%as%a% primary%goal
  95. 95. Web$pages$that$don’t$ meet$user$information$ need$PROBABLY$won’t$ rank$well$for$long
  96. 96. Good$SEOs$know$ that$too
  97. 97. By#the#way…
  98. 98. A"lot"of"IR"conference" websites"are"missing" easy"win"SEO" opportunities
  99. 99. The$previous$ year’s$conference$ outranks$the$ current$one$for$ ages
  100. 100. They%mostly%don’t% ‘grow’%a%single%target% URL
  101. 101. HTTPS%is%also%an%issue%often
  102. 102. And$often$fail$mobile$friendly$tests
  103. 103. And$we$know$ these$things$ are$ranking$ factors
  104. 104. SEOs%are%becoming%increasingly%interested%in%IR
  105. 105. SEOs%are%collaborating% with%engineers
  106. 106. SEOs%are%Contributing
  107. 107. SEOs%are% Researching
  108. 108. SEO$is$ beginning$to$ ‘grow$up’
  109. 109. IR#may#be# ‘The#Upside# Down’#world# of#SEO
  110. 110. But$the$learnings$have$been$ phenomenal$from$stepping$into$it
  111. 111. Expect'more'SEOs'to' attend'IR'conferences' soon
  112. 112. Keep$in$Touch @dawnieando @BeBertey

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