A Summary of Danny Sullivan’s SMX Keynote

The conference kicked off bright and early at the Santa Clara Exhibition Center on Tuesday morning. Even for a Brit abroad the location was easy to find. Unlike some venues where parking is either impossible or hugely expensive at Santa Clara Exhibition Center it was a breeze and even free of charge! Next a great selection of food was served up for breakfast and by the time the first keynote of the conference was given by Danny Sullivan everyone was raring to go.

Search Landscape & market share

Danny showed the packed crowd the average share of searches based on a range of data he had gathered from Comscore, netcompete and others. The data that was primarily focused on the US market showed Google had moved from 60% to a 70% market share. Yahoo’ share had dropped a few points from the 20% range and Microsoft Live were around the 10% mark.

Is Search Weathering the Recession Storm?

By Peter Young

Depending on who you decide to subscribe to it appears to have been a bit of a mixed bag for search spend during the final quarter of 2008. Recent reports by both Covario and Efficient Frontier have both released slightly differing reports on how search has fared, however there is one consistency that seems to be common to be both—search in comparison to nearly every other channel appears to be holding its own, in what can only be described as extremely trying times.

According to a report by online analytics firm Covario, search spend actually ‘surged’ during the final quarter of 2008, 43% YOY increase over the same period in 2007—a 7.2% gain over 3rd quarter 2008 spending. Such figures are all the more impressive given the circumstances experienced during the latter part of last year. It however should be noted this report was based on 12 of Covario’s U.S.-based high tech and consumer electronics customers—and thus is fairly limited in terms of scope.

Google Testing More New Features: Enhanced Listings, Pagelinks, and Spelling Corrections

Man, I feel like my favorite search engine is going through puberty! So many awkward changes! Yep that’s right, it appears that Google is once again planning on changing the way it displays search results. Danny Sullivan reports on three changes that are currently being tested live. This news comes in just a few weeks after other major changes have been implemented.

Enhanced Listings

These are listings that contain price ranges and ratings of different products and services from businesses that include this type of information on their site. So far only Yelp, Citysearch, CNET, TripAdvisor and Download.com are a part of the testing phase. One would assume that when this feature launches to the public it will be available to any site that has reviews and price ranges with in content. Danny says that this feature is similar to Yahoo’s Search Monkey.

An Interview with SMM Guru: Brian Chappell

By Joe Hall

Brian will tell you that he doesn’t call himself a guru, but in my opinion, others should. Last week, I came by a video on IM Broadcast that caught my attention. In this video social media marketer, Brian Chappell, responded to people that claim they are Social Media Marketing Gurus, but in reality they lack any real experience. Brian’s video reminded me about the constant discussion in the SEO community about fake SEO’s. I wanted to get a better understanding of what exactly successful social media marketing looks like, so I asked Brian if he would be willing to answer a few questions for the Marketing Pilgrim community.

Here is my interview with Brian Chappell (an active member of the SEO community, works at Ignite Social Media and blogs at BrianChappell.com)

How Branding Will Replace SEO

After yesterday’s firestorm, I feel the need to clarify a few things and then explain what I mean by branding.

1) Was I linkbaiting? No. Telling the truth as I see it even when it is unpopular is not necessarily linkbaiting. I do have a small gift for provocative titles though.

2) Do I really believe what I said? Yes, every word. Some people seem to find it stunning that I would actually believe what I wrote. Trust me when I say I do believe it.

3) Do I know what I am talking about? You can be the judge of that. I have been pretty successful selling online for ten years though.

4) Can a small company actually brand themselves? Yes, and if you keep reading, I will tell you how.

Is SEO a Dying Industry?

According to Shoemoney, SEO has no future. I do not always agree with him, but in this case, he is dead right. Let me pull on my flame retardant suit before I explain why.

First, understand that the only reason SEO has ever worked is because search engines were not advanced enough to always show relevant information. I remember when I started selling online. At the time, I had only a few competitors in my industry and it was easy to beat them in the SEO game. It took only a few metatags and such, and within weeks, I was dominant.

SMX London 2007 Conference Notes: Part 1

(GSINC‘s Gareth Davies couldn’t resist the lure of SMX London and took excellent notes while he was there. Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4)

On the morning of Nov 15th I headed down to the inaugural SMX in London held at the Hilton Metropole. The night before I had the rather dubious honour of staying in a cheap Bayswater hotel that had no internet connection, subsidence and only served up two thin pieces of cheese and bread for breakfast. So it was a joy to walk into the rather upmarket Hilton Metropole (and I vowed never to skimp on hotels again).