Reykjavik Internet Marketing Conference #RIMC13 – Day 1

by Dan Bell on March 21, 2013 · 1 comment

Duane Forrester from Bing – Overlap between Search and Social

Photo credit Thos003

Duane has 12 years in the industry, one of the the first SEOs to be hired by a search engine.

“following best practices then you are onto a good thing”

  • 1 in 4 queries deliver successful result
  • 42% of sessions require further refinement
  • 44% of session lasting day or more

Important for businesses to understand what a ‘session’ is.

The move from query to session

  • query is a single action, whilst a session is a collection of related actions over time.

What is in the consumer’s mind when they are actually using a query.

Important to understand the consumer better

Query – Dog

  • Session – Dog Beds, Dog accessories, dog toys etc
  • understanding the intent is critical
  • are they planning to make a purchase, moving towards the sales funnel ?

presenting the right form of content to engage the consumer more.

understanding why the consumer if engaging with you allows to deliver a greater ROI

  • 50% of all time spent searching in on sessions > 30 minutes
  • almost 50% of queries are returning to previous tasks

presenting the user with what they are actually looking for

“best new york hotels”

  • understanding user intent – what is the best for each individual user.
  • Web, Online Services and vertically integrated areas
  • again presenting the user with the most relevant app, social platform or whatever best suits the users intent.

Duane loves the Nokia City Lense and it pulls in suggestions for what is near that person’s location.

 When i type in the name of a famous singer who is also a friend, is my friend not the more important and relevant result ??

  • policing the system – example of child having smartphone playing a game, clicking an advert for a gambling site and having access as it is linked to your credit card – hard to police

Reinventing across 3 dimensions

Information architecture – creation of new information via social graph and geospatial index

Interaction Model – not just mouse and keyboard – now include voice, touch, gesture and vision

entry points – not just browser, but also devices, services and social networks – people no longer just rely on a search box

Real-time firehose

  •  dealing with information from a number of different services and trying to enhance the users experience
  • tablets are changing the way in which people consume data.

marking up data to provide the search engine with more information

links, social annotations all help to ensure the search engines produce the best results for the users.

Duane says “Mark up your content”

Deliver knowledge by computationally understanding users intent

user -> Query -> Intent Detection -> Task Derivation

  • Linda
  • Home Gym
  • Intent Detection -> who, where, others, semantic & research
  • Task derivation -> purchase, install, sell, set fire to & impress friends

This allows for refined results

everytime we get it wrong allows Bing to refine and improve results in the future.

9 billion mobile devices in the world in use today

25 billion in use by 2021

Google and Bing suggest the move away from for websites

people are expecting an enriched mobile experience

“the ability of these devices to feed in real time signals help us handle intent better”

Gone are the days of focussing on basics

Working out why people with a number of followers on Twitter are in demand, this allows for Understanding topical authority

Taking care of customer is ensuring they can engage with you socially, not just delivering basic customer service.

  • there will always be a social space for every niche – allows for businesses to go and engage with people who are looking for your brand.


80% of people wait to make a purchase online until they have spoke with a friend/family.

Social Search helps the user see their friend’s opinion faster.


  • Personalised search in Bing integrates Facebook discussing a particular subject based on what you have searched.


Social graph and patterns

Photo credit BBC

Like farm

  • search engines are great at visualising patterns of likes
  • natural patterns are what the algorithm is looking for.
  • “stay away from shortcuts”

Usability is the most important thing to Duane

SEO and LinkBuilding have a low priority as it should be more about the user.

If you want to become a topical authority – wow people when they come onto your website

6 major investment areas for SEO used by Duane for approaching SEO for MSN

  • crawl-ability
  • site structure
  • On-page
  • Content
  • Links
  • Social
Internet Marketing Book by Matt Bailey highly recommended by Duane for everyone to read
  • every area of your site has a value
  • determine what the value is
  • sort your site by value to see what really matters
Content Development
  • Engines respond to unique and useful content
  • how do you define content
  • match content to your audience
  • different mediums for different jobs
Keyword Research
  • creating share of voice reports are far better than ranking reports
  • “please stop doing ranking reports as it costs Bing money for each query”
  • don’t rely on rankings as only the engine has full control over these.
Encourage more sharing
  • create lists – people love lists
  • use hooks – be careful
  • participate in communities –  valued member of community
  • share others information – people love when what they share gets shared
Building Efficiencies
  • look for ways to streamline your time
  • identify a customer need and fill in the blanks
  • look to identify patterns
use Bing Webmaster Tools as its better !!

Shari Thurow from - Site Architecture the Right Way

Photo credit Nordic eMarketing


Anne Kennedy introduces Shari Thurow with a story from 1998 – Shari was presenting and described how engines see 2 things – content and crap.

covering 3 things:

  • SEO, Architecture and the User Experience
optimizing a website for search engines
optimizing a website for people who use search engines
“in the long-run, technology centered design is generally counterproductive to project and business goals”
SEOs are concerned with :
  • labelling website content so that is is easy to find
  • organizing website content so that it is easy to find
  • ensuring search engines have access to desired content
SEO is not about algorithms
The Big Picture
keywords and labels/architecture and design/ link development & social/searcher goals
aboutness/infrastructure & scent/ validation & credibility/ searcher goals
people dont type “add to cart” into a search engine, but they expect to see it on the page
on-page and off-page criteria balanced allow for long term successes
Site Architecture
a blending of humans and technology
information architects help make website content easier to find
if your credibility goes down, people are less likely to interact with your site
a site will rank better over time if the architecture is right
findability – query, browsing and asking
- people scan web pages for trigger words to validate their search
people expect works to appear in a subsequent page
as information scent gets stronger, users/searchers get more confident
different types of navigation
  • global
  • formal/local
  • supplemental- page interlinking
  • headings
all these things need to work together
Technical architecture
refers to hardware and software used for serving web content
information architecture has a big bearing on SEO – eg. sitelinks show a navigational query
  • benefit of IA – +30% increase in CTR on 2-line sitelinks
  • affects rankings and conversions
  • searchers are happy with both the site and the search engines provide the most accurate result
expectancy test – what do you think you are going to see if you click a link (never do in a group)
usability is not testing the human it is testing the interface.
once you have lost a user, you have almost always lost him for good 
Information architecture is good when people can complete theirs tasks
  • IA decisions have a clear impact on SEO
  • organisations consantly skip the IA process
  • technical staff need to take direction and advice from IAs
Problem with technical seos
content can be arranged :
  • by task/process
  • topic/subject
  • target audience
  • type
  • alphapbetical
  • chronological
  • spatial/geographical
  • attributes
only SEOs organise something via Keyword Tool
using the right tools but for the wrong reasons
usability test – show someone a page and take it away after 8 seconds – user should be able to tell you what is most important part of the site.
Be proactive rather than reactive – not the algoholic approach
Dont skip the IA process – will cost you a lot of money to fix.
Shari takes a mirror to meetings so you can explain to the client that they are not creating a site for a mirror of themselves
How human’s think
can i eat it, can it eat me – can i have sex with it
relates to website architecture
eye tracking – considering where people are actually looking on your site
how would you organise and label content for adults and children
organise your content for your target audience
interpretation of labelling by different audiences
GAS – how it was interpreted by different audiences
petrol, flatulence, natural Gas
how + why = ROI


Kristine Schachinger - Web Strategy

Photo credit : Twitter

We are in a constant evolving industry where what was current 6 months can be now outdated.

Website strategy is as simple as it is complex

Defining strategies – what, who, where, why and how

If you cannot answer why you are creating your website  - STOP !!!!

Spending money and effort creating something that will be worthless.

Who are my users ??

  • technologies and devices
  • geolocation
  • gender
  • age
  • income
  • education
  • browsers & platforms
Biggest mistake site owners make is build a website for a user that is like them.


Pinterest – 90% of users are women – KNOW your users !!!

Geolocation -looking at where users are when they visit and interact with your site.  Consider whether they are at work, travelling, shopping or at home – this changes the way they use your site.

Our strategy is not based on guesswork and hunches, but data & fact & understanding our users.

Don’t design your tablet site like a mobile site, users use them like a desktop.


90% of people who hate a website never return to the site.  They decide within 1-3 seconds whether they are going to interact with the site.

  • Homepage pathing – you have 3 clicks to get someone on the journey.  Once you have them, you should be able to keep them.
  • Site Architecture – should limit to 6/7 dropdowns as this is all the user can handle.
  • Content Development – maintaining it and who is in charge of it ?? 
  • Social Media Strategy – what is your voice ? who is your voice ?
  • Usability -  this will become an Algorithm check


The most overlooked part of the site is the technology.

  • non www’s and www’s resolving differently
  • robots.txt
  • sitemap – updated every week
  • page speed
  • page weight
  • url construction
  • use of scripting where important content is concerned

“If it is good for users, it is good for search”

Where is the SEO ?

Everything we do is SEO now, if you run a website your SEO team is essential.  They should be involved from Day One !!!

Search “Experience” Optimisation – hint from Google about where SEO is going – less about the engine, more about the user.


  • search engines – authorship and subjectship to improve results
  • social media integration – facial recognition theory by Kristine in relation to Facebook and Bing
  • Device Chaos – responsive design
  • Mobile vs Everything Else
  • mobile seo
  • mobile design
  • schema
  • content
  • social
If you arent doing any of the above, then you are already a long way behind.
where is strategy going ?
  • Identity – Google+ will impact on this
  • Search without Search
  • Device entropy
  • non-website based data presentation
  • content APIs
  • identity for SEO
  • True Linguistic Search
The Holy Grail of Search is integrating all of the above and making it happen.
Responsive Design – so important right now due to device recognition no longer being possible.
Shrinking your site until it becomes ugly and then review with responsive design.
Authorship is important – it builds up rank over time.  When hiring authors be aware of their background (bad history could hurt your site) and also be aware that if an strong author leaves then you will have to replace them with an equally strong author.

Elísabet Grétarsdóttir – Head of Marketing at Arion Bank

Photo Credit
Online gaming  platform with as of February 2013 had over 500,000 subscribers.
Users of the platform developed an interest in the game, meet like-minded people and gradually it becomes a part of their lifestyle.  This includes people getting EVE tattoos or naming their children “Eve”.
Elísabet has translated working for a gaming company into her new role now working for a bank.  Going from videos about frozen corpses in space to a video promoting the bank with a family theme.   Not all the time do they speak the same language but there is an element of crossover.
Going from a platform where players may be online for 8 hours, through to people relying on the service of banking although very different, still has the element of people developing an infinity with brand.
  • 40% of YouTube views in 2012 were on mobile devices – shows where the future is going.
  • The changing face of the Music Industry, with the introduction of platforms such as Spotify.
  • TV as we know it is now dead, more people using streaming services such as Netflix
The Internet is so segmented with language barriers, the recognition of speech and machine translation is something we have been trying to overcome for 60 years.
  • Ericsson estimates 50 Billion connected devices in 2020
Hello, this is the future calling. is someone there ??
Elísabet’s hope for the future is that we can learn how people behave through their connections, and how people mistreat each other.  Can we learn to make things better ?
Fixing a broken society through the changes that are coming.  It is important that the connections that happen are beneficial rather than detrimental.

Big Media & Content Consumption Through Social – The Power of We 

Todd Wilms – leads strategy for Digital, Social and Communities at SAP

Photo Credit : Todd Wilms Flickr
Our Content Problem
Content Pollution – what happens in an Internet Minute ?
Photo Credit : Intel
How to Solve It ?
Need – empathize with your audience
  • Most of us think about what we want as humans
 As content creators that is the wrong approach, we are trying to connect with others through our content.
Creation – “connect not pollute”
start thinking about being the mentor to your audience to create better content.
Connection – actually connecting with your audience
The 3 c’s
 Apply these to your content creation.

Rob Garner –  Independent Consultant

Photo Credit : Eventbrite

Rob has written a book -> Search and Social by Rob Garner

  • Your audience, your customers are always addressable – through many different channels.
  • You are publishing to an audience that expects a real-time response.
  • You have to think like a scientist – listen to your customers and remove any bias
Search and Social are linked through Natural language, to not only speak to them but understand your audience.
Looking at trends and buzzes allows you to see what people are talking about and where a conversation is going.
Integrating Search and Social to work the initial spike achieved in social to benefit the SEO in the long term.
Social signals reveal high velocity content and interests, including shared links and content.
Passive content distribution vs Active content distribution
  • sharing starts in the active phase – your Facebook friends share with their friends
  • Search Engines perform deep network analysis – Bing and Google have placed a value on every website.
  • Search data provides market research and show your audience’s tastes.  The Bing Ad Intelligence Tool provides great feedback for your campaigns.
The social signals that impact SEO include :
  • likes
  • retweets
  • linkedin share
  • number of subscriptions
  • ratio of followers to those followed
Google+ Authorship – the manifestation of true social search
They are not looking at your website, they are looking at your identity
Google+ is not a destination – it’s a platform
Understand the bigger picture, dont just publish content

Craig Kannalley – Huffington Post Senior Editor

Photo credit : Twitter
Craig started a blog called Breaking Tweets for fun, chasing news stories as they happened.  For one particular story based on Madagascar, he noticed he had a glut of traffic from Madagascar despite writing for a US audience.
  • Crowd-sourcing he was able to break news faster than the mainstream sites such as CNN on big stories
He wrote an email to Arianna Huffington after googling her name to try and get a partnership.  By reaching out and impressing her, it led to a job.

Overall a great day’s conference here in Reykjavik and another packed day tomorrow, with an early start at 8am.

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