SearchLove London 2013 Preview and Predictions

News, Events 2nd Oct 2013

Search Love has always been one of my favourite conferences, and this year is no different, which is why I am back again with my predictions for the major talks of the show. I’ve picked ten talks, but there’s actually far more than that, which would also give you a great insight. These are just the ones that I wanted to particularly shed a light on because they seem really different and interesting.

So, first of all, we’ve got Wil Reynolds, who’s going to look at Google approved paid links. If you saw my video on AdWords alternates, you’ll know I love sites like Zemanta and StumbleUpon and Outbrain. And Wil’s going to be taking a look at those kind of sites. What he’s done is he’s given his team $10,000 to spend on various sites like that, and instead of spending it on paid links, they’re going to go down that route instead. And he’s going to see what that does in terms of social shares and links and coverage of the things they’ve got. So I’m really hoping that helps justify the sites that I’ve always been saying are good, and hopefully they will have tried a few that I’ve never tried before. That would be fantastic.

Peep Laja is going to look at “Five Steps to Persuasive Web Design.” He’s got some really good research, actually, in this one on neurological studies and the way people interact with web pages. He’s a fantastic source for CRO studies anyway, and I can’t wait to see what he brings up in his talk.

Will Critchlow’s looking at “Making Your Mark Online In Local.” I’m really glad there’s a local SEO talk this year. I know a lot of people who think local SEO is just for small businesses or local businesses, but there’s a lot you can use it for even if you’ re the biggest company in the world. You still need to do local SEO, even if you don’t have shops people can walk into. There’s a lot you can get out of it. So, hopefully, Will’s going to have a look at how it can impact small and large businesses and help more people see that it really is an essential thing everyone has to do.

Paul Madden’s going to look at “Goodbye Spam, Hello Data.” Paul’s always great to see talk because he used to do a lot of the old ways of link building, shall we say, so your kind of quick wins, bulk link building tools. And that’s really helped him build things like LinkRisk, which is good for analysing backlinks, and also taught him what actually makes a good link. So in this talk, I presume, he’s going to have a look at the data that he’s learnt from LinkRisk and presumably what is seen as a good link and how you can get more of them.

Aleyda Solis is going to talk about “How To Succeed In Real International SEO Scenarios.” She’s always fantastic to see talking about mobile SEO or international SEO. This time around we’ve got international SEO. I’m hoping she delves into a lot of the common questions people have like: “Should we have a sub-domain? A sub-folder? Should we use hreflang or canonical tags if we’ve got multiple sites in different languages?” There’s a lot of misinformation out there on how to best cope with having multiple sites in different languages and locations. I know she’s done talks before that have had a series of questions and answers. So I’m hoping we get something along those lines that will answer just a ton of misinformation people have and give everyone a massive long list of things they need to do.

Marco Montemagno is looking at “Fifteen Years of Unconventional Marketing.” He actually hosted a show on Sky News I think it was, for seven years, where he talked to people in tech. So I think that’ll be interesting to see how the big boys in tech view our tiny little SEO industry, because we are seen as a small industry sometimes, and I think this will be a good bigger picture kind of talk to see where we fit in with the entire marketing mix.

Abby Covert is going to look at “Lessons from an Ontology Nerd.” Ontology is a fairly new topic for me, and it’s great to see something a bit more big picture thinking here. You know, not every talk can be a list of actionable tips. She’s going to look at how your organisation can work better and faster with what you are doing for clients, which is always good as well, because you can’t keep doing the same thing every day, every day, over and over, so it will be good to see what she suggests.

Kelvin Newman’s looking at “Graph Theory.” I saw Kelvin talking about EdgeRank before, so I know that he can talk about technical topics in a really easy to understand way. Graph theory, of course, not the easiest theory to understand, unless you’re prepared to read a few bulky textbooks. So it will be good that we’ll be getting 45 minutes worth of information, rather than having to go through all of that. Obviously, a lot of the way that search engines and social media sites work now is still using graph theory. So if you want a bigger picture understanding of how these things work, rather than worrying about 200 algorithm signals, graph theory will help you do that, and Kelvin’s talk will do that too.

Nathalie Nahai talks about culturability and whether you’re alienating half of your audience. I’ve always wanted to see her speak, and every time someone else sees her speak, they tell me she’s amazing, and I missed out. So I can’t wait to see what she has. She’s fantastic about psychological topics, and obviously, in this case, it’ll be good to understand how culture plays a role in websites, because let’s face it, if you do a CRO test, and it tells you that x percent of the people did this action and x percent did this, that’s looking at people as numbers, as opposed to their actual traits and who they are and what they like and why they did those actions. So it looks like she is going to take CRO a step further than just the numbers. At least that’s what I’m hoping we get.

And last of all, Simon Penson’s looking at “The New Rules of Big Content Promotion.” Simon does a lot of big content pieces at Zazzle, so I know he’s certainly the right man to talk about this, and it’s good to see content marketing represented on there as well. There actually are a few other content marketing topics, but he was the one I had the most interest in. And again, we’re all doing content marketing now. It’s a massive part of SEO, and there’s a lot of people out there just throwing loads of things out there to see what works and what doesn’t. So I’m hoping that Simon will come along and help people get some perspective on how they can focus their content marketing efforts, rather than taking a scattergun approach to see what works.

Okay. Those are the ten talks I can’t wait to see. As always, we’ll have a write-up on at the end of the first and second day of the conference. We have all the information that we have [room] for. I’ll be there as well, if you want to come chat, and Anna will be with me. So please come find us at the show. We’d love to chat with you. And for more information on what we do, visit or any of the profiles coming up now. Thanks for watching.

What do you think?

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