How do video, social media and advances in mobile effect search? What are the search engines changing?

These were just a few of the questions answered at The Net Impact’s Search Engine Strategies Session on Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010. The seminar covered current trends in search engine optimization and highlighted the best presentations from the The Net Impact’s SEO team’s recent trip to the Search Engine Strategies Session held in Chicago December 2009. The three presentations presented focused on B2B, Blended Search and Linking.

The first presentation, presented by Angela Cicerelli, Web Account Manager at The Net Impact, covered blended search. Blended search enhances user experience and is another way to engage with potential customer. If you are having troubles ranking for a keyword, blended search just may be the answer. The presentation discussed why we should care about images and videos in search. Social media sites, such as Flickr and YouTube, are now becoming major sources of  website traffic and are appearing in search results. What to take away from the session regarding blended search – The web isn’t about pages anymore, it’s all about streams, feeds and syndication. If information is important, it will find you.

The next presentation, led by Lauren Williamson, Web Content Manager at The Net Impact, highlighted the importance of linking. Link popularity measures the quality and quantity of links pointing to a web page. Recently, social media marketing has become one of the most practical and high quality ways to earn links. The Chicago Search Engine Strategies Session touched on three main reasons why it is important to have a linking program: improve rank, boost traffic and to increase brand exposure. Lauren closed with the statement: “Building links is similar to building relationships – it takes works and is all about quality, not quantity”.

Sonya Sawall, Web Account Manager at The Net Impact, led the final conversation on B2B. Business buyers and decision makers are online, using search engines. Business professionals engage in social networking in order to build relationships that bring business. They rely on search, sometimes throughout the whole buying cycle, and in order to be successful, Internet marketing experts must align their messages with buyers needs throughout each phase of the buying process.

The most important thing learned at The Net Impact’s SES Session: There is one certainty about SEO – the game is always changing. “If you are following a best practice that dates back to 2008 or earlier, toss it away.  It’s now wrong”. 2010 is the year of real-time, personalized results, growing importance of social, community and web mobility. We need to continue to adapt our SEO strategies to stay ahead of the curve.

We hope you all enjoyed the presentation as much as we did, and we look forward to seeing you at the next TNI event!

Check out some great pictures from the event on Flickr!

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