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The future of search: localisation, personalisation and socialisation


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Keynote given at the 11th Southern African Online Information Meeting held in the Sandton Convention Centre, 5-8 June 2012. Presented by Karen Blakeman

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The future of search: localisation, personalisation and socialisation

  1. 1. The future of search: localisation, personalisation and socialisation 11th Southern African Online Information Meeting Sandton Convention Centre, 5-8 June 2012 Karen Blakeman RBA Information Services Slides available on, authorSTREAM and Slideshare Twitter: @karenblakeman This presentation is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
  2. 2. Trends in searchNo longer straightforward text searching of web pages and documents Mobile Localisation Personalisation Social11/06/12 2
  3. 3. What its all about...... MONEY! 11/06/12 3
  4. 4. Its all about money! Google 2011 Revenues $37,905 millions (up 29% on 2010) Net Income $9,737 millions (up 26% on 2010) 2011 – 96% of revenues are from advertising Google has a problem.... 11/06/12 4
  5. 5. Googles problem "How People Spend Their TimeOnline – Stephens Lighthouse" 5
  6. 6. But Facebook isnt a search engine – is it?Already has a search option (sort of) using BingFacebook Delves Deeper Into Search - Businessweek Facebook improves its web search many users will not botherleaving Facebook to go to Google for search, which meansGoogle loses a significant amount of ad revenue11/06/12 6
  7. 7. Search engines and social networks – need to know more about you – where are you – need to know what sort of information you are interested in – need to know who your contacts are on-site and elsewhere – need to know about your activity elsewhere Personalise results11/06/12 7
  8. 8. Your browser, device, operating system... Panopticlick 8
  9. 9. 11/06/12 9
  10. 10. You are here! =11/06/12 10
  11. 11. Location information gone wrong!11/06/12 11
  12. 12. Mobile search 20-25% of volume of search via mobile Local search 20% via desktop, 40% via mobile (including tablets) But low CTR on mobile 12
  13. 13. "Over the past year, smartphone ownership among American adults has risen from 35% of adults in 2011 to 46% in 2012. This means that the overall proportion of U.S. adults who get location- based information has almost doubled over that time period, from 23% in May 2011 to 41% in February 2012. The percentage of adults who use geosocial services like Foursquare has likewise risen from 4% in 2011 to 10% in 2012." 13
  14. 14. PersonalisationAmazon Online shopping (Ocado) Targeted advertising 11/06/12 14
  15. 15. Encouraged to share11/06/12 15
  16. 16. Personalisation location past searches viewed in the past11/06/12 16
  17. 17. This is not like a loyalty store card or online store personalisation Not just you Your network connections, friends, followers, circles Everyone else?11/06/12 17
  18. 18. How far does personalisation go? Is Google really filtering my news? 18
  19. 19. How far does personalisation go?An Awfully Big Blog Adventure: The answer to your question...depends on who you are (Anne Rooney) Borromeo vs Borromeo11/06/12 19
  20. 20. Word cloud of top 20 results for a Google search on Prague (web history and social networks switched off, cookies cleared) Word cloud of top 20 results for a Google search on Prague (signed in to Google+ account, social networks and web history enabled)11/06/12 20
  21. 21. Googles new Privacy Policy "Our new Privacy Policy makes clear that, if you’re signed in, we may combine information you’ve provided from one service with information from other services. In short, we’ll treat you as a single user across all our products, which will mean a simpler, more intuitive Google experience." "were more excited than ever to build a seamless social experience, all across Google" Toward a simpler, more beautiful Google 21
  22. 22. Impact of changes on YouTube Targeted advertising?! I wonder how Google will customise my web search based on my YouTube viewing? Gives me videos based on my web search history, linked to my location (Reading) plus a long list of videos mentioned by people in my11/06/12 Google+ circles. 22
  23. 23. Google Enables Cross- Platform Local Search (As Carrot To Relinquish Your Privacy) Introducing a new local search experience across your devices - Inside Search 23
  24. 24. Google Now Forcing All New Users To Create Google+ EnabledAccounts Plus Your World (SPYW) referred to as Search+ nowavailable in and is the default. Gives priority tocontent from people in your Google+ network if you are signed into your account.(And the next Google killer is….Google! )11/06/12 24
  25. 25. SPYW currently being tested on Google.comTop results (blacked out for privacyreasons) were from one of my Google+circles and from people who restrictedaccess to the postings.Take care when providing information tousers. 11/06/12 25
  26. 26. Google Knowledge Graph11/06/12 26
  27. 27. Google Knowledge Graph11/06/12 27
  28. 28. Facebook profile Google+ profile11/06/12 28
  29. 29. Bing Relaunches, Features New Social Sidebar : 29
  30. 30. Social can affect all types of web activity Article "recommended" by a friend on Facebook. Advertising based on Facebook friends interests & work Details of Facebook friends activity using Economist app 11/06/12 30
  31. 31. Logged out of Facebook Advertising now based on part of my search history (renewable energy) Am I being told off for not being logged in to Facebook?11/06/12 31
  32. 32. The Independent newspaper11/06/12 32
  33. 33. Facebook Social Readers Are All Collapsing 33
  34. 34. Signing in and sharing to gain access to data 11/06/12 34
  35. 35. Allow local, personalisation and social? Not necessarily a bad thing Fantastic when youre on the move A different point of view But does bias results What I see on my screen is not what youll see on yours Be aware of potential privacy issues regarding friends and contacts in social networks when providing results to your users and clients11/06/12 35
  36. 36. Really dont want it when searching? Log out of all search and social accounts Try a a search tool with less or no personalisation: DuckDuckGo,, Blekko, Chrome Incognito (still keeps location) Actively manage/delete search cookies11/06/12 36
  37. 37. Social, personal and the law collide - the "cookie law" Cookies Regulations and the New EU Cookie Law - ICO 11/06/12 37
  38. 38. Mobile is here to stay and will increase Localisation, personalisation and socialisation are here to stay As part of search they can give an important, alternative point of view. Understand how they influence results, how to avoid their impact when necessary, but also how they can be used as part of a better search strategy.11/06/12 38
  39. 39. Thank you. Please share!11/06/12 39